Cornelius dairy farm uses new synchronization breeding program
By Dr. Richard E. Lee, Communications
|The Cornelius milking herd is fed a TMR made up of food produced on the farm. Dallas and Cary check on them regularly.|
"Brothers Dallas and Cary Cornelius currently have a milking herd of 248 Holsteins on their 700-acre farm in Buchanan County and their rolling herd average for milk is 23,000 pounds," according to Scott Poock, University of Missouri Extension Commercial Agriculture program, dairy veterinarian.
In their continuing eff ort to improve their operation the brothers have been working with Dr. Poock since late 2006.
With Poock's help the brothers have developed a reproductive synchronization program that speeds up cows coming in heat. Dallas now has a computer program that weekly identifies cows to receive the medication to synchronize heats.
The brothers select the heifers that they prefer to add as additions or replacements to their milking herd. They also select choice bulls to sell to other producers. The new system increases the number and quality of replacements that can be added to the dairy.
|The 100-heifer housing unit is located on a southern slope and is full on a regular basis. As new space is needed older heifers and bulls are moved on to the main feed lot where the heifers are bred and the bulls are sold.|
The top twenty percent of the bulls are raised and sold for breeding purposes. The demand for bred heifers has remained strong.
"The reproduction synchronization programs are being implemented on dairy farms," Poock said. "Cows being milked are often slow to come in heat and the synchronization program speeds up the process. Dairy producers are rapidly accepting the new protocols."
Dallas and Cary produce their own dairy rations on their 700-acre farm. Their ration is a total mixed ration (TMR) made up of forage products produced on the farm. Family members and four part-time workers round out the work force.
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