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Agroscope is the Swiss centre of excellence for agricultural research, and is affiliated with the Federal Office for Agriculture (FOAG). Agroscope makes an important contribution to a sustainable agriculture and food sector as well as to an intact environment, thereby contributing to an improved quality of life.

Journal Article

Journal article

Activity and resting behavour of dairy cows in barns with automatic milking systems (AMS's)  [2011]

Helmreich, S., Landwirtschaftliches Zentrum fuer Rinderhaltung Gruenlandwirtschaft, Milchwirtschaft, Wild und Fischerei Baden-Wuerttemberg, Aulendorf (Germany); Gygax, L.; Wechsler, B.; Hauser, R.;

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Where AMS's are used, cows have the freedom to determine their daily rhythm themselves. Various cow-movement systems governing access to specific areas of the barn limit this freedom, however. Consequently, a cow's individual time budget is an important indicator of well-being. Resting time that is cut short or low feeding times may indicate an absence of ease in the animals. This study measured the time spent by cows in various areas of the barn on 4 farms by means of a tracking system. In addition, resting behaviour was recorded on 8 farms with the aid of an acceleration logger. Data was statistically analysed using generalised mixed-effects models. Analysis of the tracking data shows that animals with a longer milking interval ( 14 h) spent more time daily in the feeding area (F1,207=3.88; p=0.05). With age, time spent in the resting area per day and per resting-cubicle visit increased to F1,207=5.79 (p=0.02) and F1,207=32.41 (p0,0001) respectively. Time spent in the waiting area tended to rise with an increasing number of incomplete milkings (F1,207

From the journal

ART-Schriftenreihe (Switzerland)

ISSN : 1661-7584