Sixty multiparous Holstein-Friesian dairy cows were allocated one of three forages (fodder beet, kale or grass silage) at one of two feeding allocations (high and low). Cows offered the high allowance system received 9 kg of kale or fodder beet DMin-situplus 5 kg of bale grass silage DM per day,or ad libitumgrass silage offered indoors. Cows on the low allowance system were offered 6 kg of kale or fodder beet DMin-situplus 3.5 kg of bale grass silage DM per day,or 9.5 kg of grass silage DMoffered indoors. Treatments were imposed for 70 ± 16 days before parturition. Post-partum,all cows were turned out to pasture and received 14 kg of perennial ryegrass DM plus 4 kg of concentrate/cow/d for the first five weeks of lactation. Cows offered grass silage had a greater gain in body condition score pre-partum than animals offered kale or fodder beet systems. Cows offered the fodder beet system pre-partum had a greater fat yield compared to those offered kale and a greater protein yield compared to those offered grass silage, resulting in a 9 % increase in solids corrected milk yield during the first five weeks of lactation.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 68, Brisbane, Australia, 16-19, 2008
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