With spring training in the air, baseball is a great analogy for knowing what it takes to win in the area of cow transition! Effective management of the transition period sets the stage for the cow’s subsequent lactation production and reproductive performance. As in baseball it takes more than a single, double or triple to score – it takes covering all the bases.
In the Equation of Reproduction
(Heat Expression/Detection x Technician X Herd Fertility X Semen fertility)
We talk about the factors that affect reproduction performance. The overall reproductive performance is a result of multiplying the herd’s performance for each factor. The overall herd’s performance will always be lower than the factor. Put it another way, a chain is only as strong as its weakest link.
You can break that down even closer and the overall “Herd Fertility” is affected, in part, by the transition period. University studies and researchers have concluded that the smoother a cow moves through the transition period, the better she will produce and reproduce. Out of the research comes several strategies and recommendations for caring for your cows during that time. There are three different segments to consider: Logistics (Routines), Nutrition and Facilities. Each of these are equally important but as previously mentioned, results will be no better than the weakest link.
Logistical items would be:
1. Separation of close-up first-calf and multi-lactation-calf cows
2. Length of time in close-up pen
3. Stocking Rate – 30 inches of bunk space per cow
4. Available feed at all times
5. Limit number of pen moves
1. Phase feed requirements
2. Dry Matter Intake (DMI)
1. Water availability
2. Heat abatement
3. Bedding and stall management
All West/Select Sires has trained people to help you evaluate and work alongside your nutritionist, veterinarian and management team. SRS (Select Reproductive Specialists) Specialists are well trained in the Equation of Reproduction, record analysis, identifying those weakest links and providing solutions to help you cover all the bases.
Spring is in the air and there’s no better time to get your “team” ready for the season! Contact your local All West Select Sires sales or support staff if you would like to learn more about our RePRO ReVIEW and SRS Consulting Services, or call the office at 800.426.2697 to get connected to an SRS specialist near you.