The potential of New Zealand cows for milk production remains substantially under-utilised as a consequence of pasture-based feeding systems. One means to increase per cow production is to balance pasture diets to provide the correct quantities and ratios of nutrients to meet target levels of milksolids production, but this needs to be done in a manner which is profitable and consistent with good pasture management. The dairy farm simulation model, UDDER, was used to evaluate supplementation strategies for early and late lactation in order to increase milk yields per cow and the farm gross margin. A sample of diets from UDDER were then tested with a ration balancing model (CAMDAIRY) to identify nutrient limitations to milk production. Undegraded protein (UDP) was limiting in all diets. It was concluded that, ration balancing would be useful aid to feed management on New Zealand dairy farms, but in practice could only be sensibly used if feed and animal monitoring systems are in place to determine the type(s) and period(s) of supple
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 56, , 285-288, 1996
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