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Dairy advances reproductive efficiencies – Audio

Maria “Connie” Cordoba, Outreach Specialist
Department of Dairy Science
UW-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
Phone (608) 219-5297, (760) 821-9529

02:58 – Total Time

0:21 – What the program is
0:45 – Why dairy reproduction is a challenge
1:16 – New dairy reproductive technology
1:42 – Participating dairy farms
2:01 – More dollars per cow
2:28 – Amazing what you can accomplish
2:48 – Lead out


Sevie Kenyon: Helping dairy farmers increase their herds. We’re visiting today with Connie Cordoba, Department of Dairy Science, University of Wisconsin – Madison Extension and the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences now celebrating 125 years and I’m Sevie Kenyon. Connie, start off by describing for us what farmers are trying to accomplish.

Connie Cordoba: Well I’m running an extension program that is helping farmers troubleshoot reproduction. So the more cows pregnant they have, the more calves they have, they can expand their herd and also they can produce more milk. So you want to have a lot of cows pregnant with a lot of claves so you have the calves and a lot of milk production.

Sevie Kenyon: And Connie, why is this such a challenge?

Connie Cordoba: Farms get bigger, they need more help in that regards. They need to have a system for breeding cows and also there’s a lot of new technologies out there so also the program helps them showcase all this possibilities that they may have and some are useful for them and some are not so useful for them so they will know which one to use and what is beneficial and what is not.

Sevie Kenyon: Connie, perhaps you could give us an example of new technologies being used on dairy farms.

Connie Cordoba: The newest technology out there, it’s a system that is called Accelerometers. The idea is that you put this collars with sensors on the cows and then that shows up in a computer screen. Like the cow tells him when she is in heat.

Sevie Kenyon: Connie, perhaps you can describe for us how many farms are participating in this program?

Connie Cordoba: So far we have 45 farms that enroll in the program. It is all over the state, I think 80% of them were extremely satisfied with the program, they wanted to continue even after the program was over, so it was a great success.

Sevie Kenyon: Connie can you give us an idea what kind of improvements you saw in some of these farms?

Connie Cordoba: We saw a lot of improvement. The one that we measured the most was the economic gain of increasing the pregnancy rate, which is the rate of cows that become pregnant. For that we increased 2-percentage point. It results in at least a potential gain of $30 per cow per year so it’s quite a bit of money that you can potentially gain.

Sevie Kenyon: Do you have any real big success story you can describe?

Connie Cordoba: Not only one but I’m happy to make the farmers aware of what is happening. Just getting down and dirty with numbers and troubleshooting and being the glue for the whole team. You know, this is a team approach so everybody sits down at the table, people were really amazed. Amazed what they could achieve.

Sevie Kenyon: We’ve been visiting with Connie Cordoba, Department of Dairy Science, University of Wisconsin – Madison Extension and the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences I’m Sevie Kenyon.