Have you cooled your dry cows today?

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The greater the amount of heat stress during the dry period, the more you can expect milk production to decline during a cow's next lactation.

According to research conducted at Mississippi State University, each one-point increase in the temperature-humidity index (THI) above 72 results in a 21-pound drop in milk production during the first 200 days of a cow's lactation. For example, a dry cow exposed to an average THI of 80 - eight points higher than a THI of 72 - would be expected to produce about 168 pounds less milk during her first 200 days of lactation than a cow exposed to an average THI of 72.

The table below left summarizes this loss.

THI – Milk loss* (Pounds)
73 – 21
74 – 42
75 – 63
76 – 84
77 – 105
78 – 126
79 – 147
80 – 168
81 – 189
82 – 210
83 – 231

* Indicates pounds of milk lost during the first 200 days of lactation.  



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