22 September 2020
Metricheck early for higher in-calf rates
12 August 2020
Money in the bank
Find dirty cows early & reap multiple rewards
Imagine if you could improve your 6 week in-calf rate in ‘dirty’ cows by nearly 10% and increase your number of early calvers with just one change on farm.
It may sound unlikely, but that’s exactly what happened with 29 seasonal calving herds in a recent New Zealand study on endometritis.
Instead of the standard practice of metrichecking all the cows in each herd a month prior to planned start of mating, local researchers did something quite different. They metrichecked cows in batches much earlier, i.e. just 2-4 weeks after calving, and as a result detected and treated endometritis in dirty cows much earlier. This meant a change from simply metrichecking all the milking cows as mating approached. But as detection and cure for endometritis was so much better from metrichecking smaller groups of cows earlier, even with the cost of extra treatment included, the return on investment was well over 400%!
As well as a 9.6% improvement in 6 week in-calf rate, cows metrichecked and treated 2-4 weeks after calving had a 3% higher final (12 week) in-calf rate. The cows also conceived 8 days earlier than herd-mates who were treated with antibiotics at the traditional time of 4 weeks prior to PSM.
That’s money in the bank no matter which way you look at it. Better yet, that’s a cleaner, healthier, more sustainable herd. The gains are so definitive we now recommend early metrichecking and subsequent treatment of infected cows with MetriVet as standard practice.
Here’s how it works. Endometritis is a sneaky infection in its own right, because ‘dirty’ cows often show no sign of illness. But the longer we wait before checking for infection, i.e. using a Metrichecker to find pus in the vagina, the harder dirty cows are to find.
That’s because the cervix closes up after calving, stopping the pus exiting the uterus. In these cases it’s easy to assume infected cows have cured on their own, when in truth the disease is still there but just can no longer be readily identified as needing treatment. These hidden dirty cows only show themselves later as non-cyclers or from lower conception rates, disappointing in-calf rates and/or more empties.
Use the ‘Ready To Mate’ App to plan and manage repro programs including metrichecking, tail painting, non-cycling cow treatment and Why Wait programs.
So don’t just imagine a better 6 week in-calf rate and more early calvers next year – call us now to help make it happen.