More milk and healthier cows with AHV
Richard Van der Heyden milks 400 Friesian Cross cows just outside Putaruru. He operates a cost-effective high input system which results in approximately 660 kg MS per cow. The cows receive maize, PKE and sunflower pellets to supplement their grass intake. The herd is split calving with 220 autumn and 180 spring calving. Richard is always open to explore how he can improve production while keeping his cows happy and healthy. He got a tip from a neighbour about AHV and Janneke van Wagtendonk, Managing Director AHV New Zealand, visited for the first time in October 2022.
Richard started with AHV udder health solutions and with the most recent autumn calving he used the AHV Proactive Fertility Protocol which supports cows to have a better start to lactation while promoting improved fertility and less uterine and other health challenges. 160 of his mixed age autumn calvers received the AHV Opti Bolus and AHV Milk Start Paste as soon as possible after calving. He added an AHV Aspi Bolus after hard calvings from twins or an assist to help these cows recover. On-farm demonstration work in New Zealand shows that this protocol can help cows cycle 36 days earlier giving them more opportunity to get in calf earlier in our seasonal farming system (which means more milk and a more condensed calving pattern). It also reduces the number of noncycling cows before the start of mating, meaning less traditional intervention methods which are less effective, slower, more invasive and more expensive. For late calvers, this lowered the empty rate by 11%.
“The cows come into more milk faster”
Richard observes, “So far, I’ve seen a lot less metabolic challenges after calving, the cows do not seem to lose so much condition in early lactation, SCC was good even with this wet autumn and winter, and the cows are cycling well. We are in the 5th week of mating now and only 2 cows have not cycled yet. The cows have come into more milk faster, which will benefit the entire lactation.”
The AHV Opti bolus supports the uterus to recover fast after calving which means energy can flow to milk production rather than to cleaning up the uterus. The AHV Milk Start Paste gets a cow eating fast, which means they close their energy and mineral gaps themselves with the feed they receive. The macro minerals in the Milk Start Paste also support the Opti bolus. By end of July, the pregnancy rates will be known.
Richard continues, “ We scan the cows 4 times a year. When we check the empties of the spring herd, we also check the autumn herd for cysts or dirty cows. This autumn, we only had 3 dirty cows with retained membranes, two of them had twins with a bull and heifer calf. I am pretty happy with the overall results and I have decided to give all spring calving cows the AHV Opti bolus and Milk Start Paste again.”
AHV (Animal Health Vision) is the global leader in quorum sensing-powered animal health solutions and advisory services, giving #PowerToTheFarmer to optimise their animal health. Since opening in New Zealand February 2022, AHV has tailored a range of protocols to New Zealand farming challenges to power herd longevity, productivity and profitability. Reach out to your local Territory Manager or call AHV New Zealand at 0800 424 869 to learn more about how AHV can support your farm.
These products are mentioned by Richard:
AHV Opti Bolus
AHV Milk Start Paste
AHV Aspi Bolus
Get in touch!
Would you like to be visited by an Territory Manager to discuss the health challenges on your farm together? Our AHV Territory Manager will be happy to visit you to jointly assess the health of your cows and come up with appropriate farm-specific advice.
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