The production performance of Holstein and Fleckvieh x Holstein cows in an intensive feeding system

Metaxas, L. (2016-03)

Thesis (MScAgric)--Stellenbosch University, 2016.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The aim of the study was to determine the effect of crossbreeding using Fleckvieh sires on Holstein cows on milk production and reproduction parameters, veal and beef production and growth parameters of heifers in an intensive feeding system. The study was conducted at the Elsenburg Research Farm using Fleckvieh x Holstein (FxH) and Holstein (H) cows, bull calves and heifers. Twenty four heifers from both genotypes were initially sourced from a commercial dairy farm and reared to first calving at Elsenburg. Male and female progeny from these cows were subsequently included in the trial. Holstein cows and heifers were inseminated with H semen and FxH cows and heifers were inseminated with Fleckvieh semen. Similar standard management practices with regards to feeding of dairy cows, heifers and bull calves were followed for both genotypes. Production parameters, corrected for a 305-day lactation period, did not differ, being 6330±117 vs. 6108±97 kg milk, 252±4.7 vs. 251±3.9 kg fat and 202±3.5 vs. 200±2.9 kg protein for H and FxH cows, respectively. Protein and fat percentages differed between genotypes being 3.20±0.02 vs. 3.3±0.02% and 3.98±0.03 vs. 4.13±0.0.02% for H and FxH cows, respectively. Using a dual-purpose breed in a crossbreeding programme on Holstein cows did not reduce the production performance of crossbred cows. Some fertility parameters of H vs. FxH cows differed significantly, i.e. the interval from calving to first service being shorter for FxH vs. H cows at 86.2±5.3 vs. 104.7±5.0 days, respectively. However, days open tended to differ between genotypes being 153.1±6.8 and 135.3±7.1 for H and FxH cows, respectively. The number of services per conception did not differ between genotypes being 2.24±0.14 and 2.30±0.15 for H vs. FxH cows, respectively. While more FxH cows conceived within 100 days after calving in comparison to H cows, being 37±6 and 48±6%, respectively, the proportion of cows conceiving within 200 days post partum did not differ between genotypes, being 76±4 and 81±4% for H and FxH cows, respectively. Fertility parameters for H vs. FxH heifers did not differ, i.e. age at first insemination was 15.4±0.30 vs. 15.5±0.33 months, age at conception 17.2±0.35 vs. 17.3±0.34 months and age at first calving 26.4±0.37 vs. 26.5±0.24 months of age, respectively. The birth weight (BW) of FxH and H heifers did not differ, being 37.70.65 vs. 37.40.71 kg respectively, while the average daily gain (ADG)(determined with a linear regression fitted to obtain individual ADG’s) of FxH heifers was significantly higher than that of H heifers, being 0.8130.021 vs. 0.6960.017 kg/day. However, the live weight, stature, girth circumference and age at first calving of heifers did not differ between genotypes. Bull calves were divided into four groups, the treatments being genotype (H or FxH) and marketing age, i.e. veal (marketed at a live weight of about 200 kg for a carcass weight not exceeding 100 kg) and as beef marketed as steers at 18 months of age. Veal calves were reared in an intensive feeding system while steers were put on kikuyu pasture. For steers reared to 18 months of age, birth weight (BW), live weight (LW) at 18 months of age and ADG did not differ between H and FxH steers, being 38.3±1.3 and 41.2±1.3 kg, 450±16 and 468±20 kg and 0.741±0.022 and 0.778±0.023 kg per day, respectively. For veal calves, the BW, LW at marketing and ADG did not differ between H and FxH, being 39.6±0.70 and 41.4±0.91 kg, 203±1 and 198±2 kg and 0.929±0.020 and 0.953±0.021 kg, respectively. In conclusion, with the exception of fat and protein percentages, milk production parameters did not differ between H and FxH cows while some fertility parameters differed between genotypes. Crossbred cows showed a positive internal growth rate of 9.4% while H showed a negative internal herd growth of about 5% over the trial period.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die doel van die studie was om die effek van kruisteling met Fleckvieh bulle op Holstein koeie op melkproduksie-eienskappe, reproduksie-eienskappe, kalfsvleis- en beesvleisproduksie en groei-eienskappe van vervangingsverse in ‘n intensiewe voedingstelsel, te bepaal. Die studie is op die Elsenburg Navorsingsplaas uitgevoer met Fleckvieh x Holstein (FxH) en Holstein (H) koeie, bulkalwers en verse. Die studie is begin met 24 verse van beide genotipes wat vanaf ‘n kommersiële melkprodusent aangekoop is. Die verse is sowat vyf dae na geboorte verkry, na Elsenburg vervoer en daar groot gemaak tot eerste kalwing. Die manlike en vroulike nageslag van dié koeie is hierna in die studie opgeneem en toepaslike data is vervolgens van verse en bulle versamel. Holstein koeie en –verse is met Holstein bulle en FxH-koeie en –verse is met Fleckvieh bulle gedek. Dieselfde bestuurspraktyke is toegepas op diere van die verskillende genotipes en groepe. Melkproduksieparameters, gekorrigeer vir ‘n 305-dag laktasieperiode, het nie tussen genotipes verskil nie. Die melk-, vet- en proteïenproduksie van H- en FxH-koeie was 6330±117 vs. 6108±97 kg, 252±4.7 vs. 251±3.9 kg and 202±3.5 vs. 200±2.9 kg onderskeidelik. Die proteïen- en vetpersentasie het statisties betekenisvol tussen genotipes verskil, naamlik 3.20±0.02 vs. 3.30±0.02% en 3.98±0.03 vs. 4.13±0.0.02% vir H en FxH-koeie onderskeidelik. Om ‘n dubbeldoelras in ‘n kruistelingsprogram op Holstein koeie te gebruik het dus nie die melkproduksie van koeie benadeel nie. Sommige vrugbaarheidseienskappe het statisties betekenisvol verskil tussen H- and FxH-koeie, naamlik die periode vanaf kalf tot eerste inseminasie was korter vir FxH-koeie as vir H-koeie (86.2±5.3 vs. 104.7±5.0 dae onderskeidelik). Hierteenoor het die periode van kalf to konsepsie geneig om te verskil tussen die rasse, naamlik 153.1±6.8 and 135.3±7.1 vir H- en FxH-koeie onderskeidelik. Die aantal inseminasies per konsepsie (2.24±0.14 en 2.30±0.15 vir H- en FxH-koeie onderskeidelik) het nie verskil tussen genotipes nie omdat dit meer ‘n aanduiding is van die inseminasievermoë van die insemineerder. Meer FxH- as H-koeie het beset geraak binne 100 dae na kalf, naamlik 37±6 and 48±6% onderskeidelik terwyl die persentasie koeie wat binne 200 dae na kalf beset geraak het, nie tussen genotipes verskil het nie, naamlik 76±4 en 81±4% vir H- en FxH-koeie onderskeidelik. Vrugbaarheidseienskappe van verse het nie betekenisvol tussen genotipes verskil nie. Die ouderdom met eerste inseminasie, ouderdom by konsepsie en ouderdom met eerste kalf was 15.4±0.30 vs. 15.5±0.33 maande, 17.2±0.35 vs. 17.3±0.34 maande en 26.4±0.37 vs. 26.5±0.24 maande vir H- en FxH-verse onderskeidelik. Die geboortegewig van FxH- en H-verse het nie verskil nie en was 37.70.65 vs. 37.40.71 kg onderskeidelik. Die gemiddelde daaglikse liggaamsmassatoename van FxH-verse was volgens liniêre regresssievergelykings statisties betekenisvol hoër was dié van H-verse, naamlik 0.8130.021 vs. 0.6960.017 kg/dag, onderskeidelik. Hierteenoor het die liggaamsmassa, skouerhoogte, borsomvang en ouderdom by eerste kalf nie tussen genotipes verskil nie. Bulkawers is in vier groepe verdeel is, naamlik genotipe (H en FxH) en bemarkingsouderdom, naamlik (1) kalfsvleis (bulkalwers is grootgemaak tot ‘n liggaamsmassa van sowat 200 kg om ‘n karkasmassa te lewer wat nie swaarder is as 100 kg nie) en (2) 18-maande ouderdom vir beesvleisproduksie. Vir kalfsvleisproduksie is bulkalwers intensief grootgemaak terwyl in die beesvleisproduksiestelsel is ossies op kikoejoe-weiding aangehou. Vir ossies wat op 18-maande ouderdom bemark is, is die geboortegewig, liggaamsmassa op 18-maande ouderdom en gemiddelde daaglikse liggaamsmassatoename vir H- en FxH-ossies 38.3±1.3 en 41.2±1.3 kg, 450±16 en 468±20 kg en 0.741±0.022 en 0.778±0.023 kg per dag, onderskeidelik. Die geboortemassa, liggaamsmassa by bemarking en gemiddelde daaglikse liggaamsmassatoename van H- en FxH-bulkalwers wat vir kalfvleis grootgemaak is, het nie betekenisvol tussen genotipes verskil nie en was 39.6±0.70 en 41.4±0.91 kg, 203±1 en 198±2 kg en 0.929±0.020 en 0.953±0.021 kg per dag, onderskeidelik. Die finale gevolgtrekking van die studie is dat met die uitsondering van die vet- en proteïenpersentasie van melk wat betekenisvol verskil het, het melkproduksie-eienskappe nie tussen H- en FxH-koeie verskil nie. Tesame hiermee het sommige vrugbaarheidseienskappe tussen die twee genotipes verskil. Die FxH-koeie het oor die duur van die ondersoek ‘n positiewe interne kuddegroei van 9.4% per jaar getoon terwyl die H-koeie oor dieselfde tyd ‘n negatiewe kuddegroei van sowat 5% getoon het. Dit beteken dat die aantal koeie in dié groep verminder het.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/98300
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