The reproductive performance of the national dairy herd has declined (Harris et al. 2006). Heifer rearing is one of eight "ingredients" for achieving good reproductive performance identified by the InCalf project (Burke et al. 2007). Many New Zealand dairy farmers graze their heifers on a run-off or pay a grazier to grow the heifers, with heifers commonly leaving the dairy farm at weaning, or nine months of age and returning at around 22 months of age.

LR, McNaughton, and TJ Lopdell

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 72, Christchurch, 120-122, 2012
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