Department of Animal Husbandry, University of Helsinki
Comparisons are made between different methods to find the peak production (maximum daily milk yield) and methods to design the average lactation curve at the ascending phase in dairy cows. It was noted that in order to determine the height and location of the maximal producing capacity of a cow in a known lactation period, it is preferable to choose the peak production as a mean of three subsequent best days. It was also noted that the usual methods for drawing the average lactation curves do not give a true picture of the height and location of the peak. The author suggests a method for determining the average lactation curve at the ascending phase by using the averages of both milk productions and times involved in reaching the peak and known fractions (e.g. 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and 5/4) of it. In this lactation curve the peak production is the mean of the peaks of individual cows, and the time involved in reaching it is the mean of the durations of the ascending phases of the individual cows.
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