A large scale retrospective study was undertaken in2005 on the impact of the policies for induction of early calving (either undertaken during study period, stopped in previous 2 seasons, or continuing to induce) and other factors on herd reproductive performance. Data was gathered from whole-herd pregnancy testing data and farm visit records, and electronic records from the LIC database. Data analysed included records from 3 consecutive seasons from 82 herds, and included 34,729 cows, 72,593 calvings, 237,884 individual herd test records and summary pregnancy test results for each herd for 3 seasons. Factors that significantly influenced herd reproductive performance were herd induction policy, season, herd predominant breed, 4 week submission rate, average milk protein percent at herd test within 60 days following the start of the breeding programme, and length of breeding programme (all P< 0.01). Induction usage was found to be declining over time, implemented at a later stage of the calving programme and unlikely to meet Code of Practice requirements, and under-reported to the LIC database. This large-scale epidemiologic study provides important information for herd owners, their advisors, and other scientists on herd reproductive performance.

S, Meier, P Gore, E Minnee, and N Thomson

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 66, Napier, 329-333, 2006
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