The Extension Dairy Program strengthens the competitiveness of the Wisconsin dairy industry through statewide leadership in education and research.
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Over the past two decades, a reproduction revolution has occurred in the dairy industry. Twenty years ago, the 21-day pregnancy rate in U.S. dairy herds averaged about 14% with conception rates rarely exceeding 40%. In 1998, the annualized 21-day pregnancy rate goal was 20%, which few herds could achieve.
Healthy soil is the foundation of a productive farm. Monitoring soil health and maintaining soil integrity can improve water filtration, boost crop production and health, and foster biological and physical components of soil. Fields that receive dairy manure are likely to receive higher copper concentrations than non-dairy manure.
Keeping your livestock safe from microbes, including bacteria, viruses, and fungi, is the biosecurity goal that all farms should have. Wearing clean, sanitized footwear helps meet this goal as foot traffic moves microbes to and around the farm.
A footbath is one of the most important tools used on dairy farms to prevent lameness and maintain hoof health. When used properly and paired with a disinfectant, a footbath can prevent and control foot rot and digital dermatitis on dairy farms. Recently, the recommendations for footbath dimensions have changed after new research was conducted at the UW School of Veterinary Medicine.