Fresh cows are one of the most important groups of animals on the dairy farm therefore, it is critical to monitor them closely. After a cow calves, she is more likely to experience a health issue as she fully transitions to the lactating herd. Making fresh cow checks on your farm to monitor for health issues can easily and efficiently fit into your daily routines by utilizing reports and alarms to find exception cows that require immediate attention.
Fresh Cow Reports for Monobox/DairyRobot R9500 Users
The transition period for a dairy cow is defined as the time from when the cow is a pregnant dry cow to when she calves and enters into the lactating herd. It is a very critical time of the cow’s life. This period plays a primary role in how she will perform throughout the duration of her lactation. This means that close monitoring and quick action is needed if/when a concern is noticed, such as a drop in production, decreased visits to the robot, and reduced consumption in feed, for example. By using the data that can be found in DairyPlan through reports, and daily monitoring, a producer can take swift action to correct any issues or treat the animal accordingly.
A couple specific reports that are useful to monitor fresh cows in DairyPlan include:
- Fresh Cows Monobox Attentions – This shows data from cows that are 1-21 DIM, including production and conductivity data.
- Monobox Fresh Cow Report – This is another useful report that shows the visits of fresh cows along with feed consumption data.
These key reports, along with a multitude of original base reports available in DairyPlan (some of these are further discussed below) can assist you in finding the data you need to help ensure a successful transition period for your fresh cows.
Left Herd Reports – Focus on Fresh Cows
When a cow perishes or is culled from the herd, we recommend that you enter a “left herd” reason to categorize why the animal is no longer in the herd, making it much easier to track disease incidence on your farm. Because DairyPlan is used on a wide-range of herds around the world, there are no pre-defined “left herd” reasons, so each farm is able to define a list that works for them. For instance, if you do milk testing, the organization that does the testing, may have their own “left herd” reasons and you can use those for your farm. Or, you can define those “left herd” reasons on your own. Either way you need to be consistent in recording “left herd” reasons to be able to track the data and determine the predominant reasons that cows are leaving the herd.
Additionally, and very importantly, by looking at that “left herd” data, when it comes to fresh cows, can help you determine what problems you are facing in the transition cow area.
Suggestions for “left herd” reasons:
- Feet and leg issues
- Business purposes
- Low production
- Reproduction problems
- Mastitis issues
- Udder problems
A good report that can be utilized is the “Fresh Cows Leaving the Herd” report. This report can be easily downloaded (ask your local GEA dealer for a link if needed). Download the file and then paste it into C:\DairyPln folder of the DairyPlan computer. Then, you can open the report from the main DPMenue choosing the “S” then “Evaluation” programs, and then, “DPList”. Then you can open the report and adjust the date range in the upper left hand corner. If you are metering in pounds the date format is MM-DD-YYYY. If you are metering in kilograms then the date format is DD-MM-YYYY.
As you can see in the report below, the top section is a summary area to show an overview of each of the “left herd” reasons. At this farm we have animals that left the herd between 1 and 60 DIM, and the “left herd” reasons that were used are 1, 3, 4, 6. For example, on this report we had three (3) cows leave the herd for reason 1 (which is feet and leg issues) that were between 1-60 DIM. They averaged 20 days in milk, the average age was 4.6 years old, and on average these cows were in their third lactation. Additionally, we can see the breakdown details of the individual cows in the two lower sections by lactation number. The first lactation animals are shown in the middle section and second lactation and above cows are shown in the bottom section.