ELECTRONIC MONITORING ON BEHAVIORAL PATTERNS OFDAIRY COWS IN A COOLING FREESTALL
Keywords:Evaporative cooling, resting area, behaviour, dairy cows
This research aimed to use electronic monitoring for evaluating behavior patterns oflactating cows in a cooling freestall. Four video cameras were strategically installed ineach treatment for capturing in real time images of animal displacements and activities,as intake, rumination and resting. The trial was carried out during 28 consecutive daysof November 2003, in which images were daily recorded from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. during 7days. Fifteen multiparous lactating cows producing 20 kg of milk per day were used.The tested treatments were: non-fan (F0), fan (F) and fan plus misting (FM) in directionto animal bedding. Dry bulb temperature (DBT) and air relative humidity (RH) inside andoutside of facility were measured every 15 minutes during 24 hours. The RH was higherin non-fan (61.8%) and fan plus misting (61.8%) treatments than in fan (60.3%) treatment.Also, the temperature and humidity index was higher in fan (75.0) treatment than in non-fan (74.5) and fan plus misting (74.3) treatments. In the treatment with fan, animalsspent more time in the feeding area (108.3 min) than those of non-fan (60.7 min) andfan plus misting (72.5 min) treatments. Fan treatment cows spent more time (19.3 min)in waterers in relation to non-fan (8.3 min). Different patterns were observed in thecow’s preference relative to resting area. The resting areas include the bedding adjacentto feeding area and bedding adjacent to waterers. Cows of non-fan (189.0 min) and fan(167.3 min) spent more time lying in the bedding adjacent to feeding area. However, thecows of treatment fan plus misting (164.0 min of total) spent more time lying in thebedding adjacent to waterers in relation fan (26.7 min). The cows of fan plus mistingtreatment also spent more time (35.0 min) standing in passage area (drinkers) than ofnon-fan and fan (10.0 min). In the current experiment, the results indicate difference infreestall occupancy. The cow’s preference was always related to the availability of coolingsystem.
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Copyright (c) 2014 Soraia V. Matarazzo, Iran J. O. Silva, Maurício Perissinoto, Sérgio A. Fernandes, Daniella J. Moura, Irineu Arcaro Júnior, Juliana R. P. Arcaro
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