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General Health

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Cows with bells! The beauty of alpine pastures…

By |2019-08-23T14:43:37+10:00August 23rd, 2019|Categories: General Health, MilkWise|Tags: , , |

If you look down at a mix of clover, daisies and dandelions in Australia it doesn't seem particularly special. But high up in the mountains of France or Switzerland, they become something amazing! These mountain pastures, known as "alpage", are part of a particular type of farming that holds an important place in French and

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Sight and safety: looking at the world through cow-coloured glasses…

By |2019-07-23T07:49:50+10:00July 23rd, 2019|Categories: General Health|Tags: , , , |

I was recently asked how a cow sees the world and thought it would be worth posting something that I prepared for The Milk Maid Marian a number of years ago. The biology of how cows see the world and the behaviour that results is an interesting topic! Where it all began... Domestication of wild

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Do cattle get the flu?

By |2019-07-17T12:05:45+10:00July 16th, 2019|Categories: CalfWise, Farm Services, General Health, HerdWise|Tags: , , |

There’s a lot of talk about this year’s flu season and how it’s earlier/worse than usual (as you can see from the graph above). So we thought we’d answer the question: do cattle get the flu? A plethora of respiratory viruses There’s lots of viruses that can affect the respiratory system of birds and mammals.

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Minimising lameness this winter

By |2019-07-17T11:26:40+10:00June 26th, 2019|Categories: Farm Services, General Health|Tags: , , , |

Lame cows are frustrating, especially when the weather – which we have no control over – plays such a big part in increasing the risk of sore feet. Below are several things you can do to minimise the risk of lameness in wet conditions. This, in turn, will reduce the stress on your farm team

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Dairying in Taiwan – food for thought

By |2019-07-17T11:29:44+10:00June 26th, 2019|Categories: General Health|Tags: , , |

After several visits to Taiwan, this year was a little bit different in that myself and vet/nutritionist Liz Bramley circumnavigated the island and finally got to see the sights of the East Coast. There is only a small area for living and farming on this side as Taiwan - but it provided lots of

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Milk Trivia

By |2019-07-17T11:39:09+10:00June 24th, 2019|Categories: General Health, MilkWise|Tags: |

The first of June was World Milk Day, but over in the USA the whole of June is National Dairy Month. So how about some milk trivia to celebrate - you never know when it might come in handy at a trivia night! Who invented the milkshake? In Chicago, 1922, Walgreens' Ivar "Pop" Coulson added

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Is bull testing a worthwhile exercise (and are maiden bulls worth testing)?

By |2019-07-17T11:56:04+10:00June 3rd, 2019|Categories: General Health, ReproWise|Tags: , , , |

Herd reproductive performance is an important component of efficient milk production.  Australian studies have identified several important factors that drive herd fertility.  One of these is bull performance. Where bulls are used in a mating program, either alone or as a follow up to an AI period, we need to ensure that we have enough

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M. bovis and M. bovis – same same, but different!

By |2019-07-17T11:54:53+10:00May 19th, 2019|Categories: Farm Services, General Health|Tags: , , , |

What’s the difference between M. bovis….and M. bovis? The shorthand for these two diseases of cattle is the same, but they completely different bacteria: Mycobacterium bovis and Mycoplasma bovis. Every bacteria has a specific name, so that we can identify them better – the “surname” (in this case Mycobacterium and Mycoplasma) and then a “first

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Something to ruminate on…

By |2019-07-17T11:53:40+10:00May 18th, 2019|Categories: Farm Services, General Health|Tags: , , |

What do all these feed stuffs have in common? They can all be digested by rumen microbes and turned into milk! If you could sum up a cow in five words, it would be “a fermentation vat on legs”. That is, their rumen is a large, heated vat that stirs together carbohydrates, water and bacteria

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Should you treat your cows to some chocolate this Easter?

By |2019-07-17T11:52:15+10:00April 16th, 2019|Categories: Farm Services, General Health|Tags: , |

We all know that chocolate is bad for dogs, but what about cows? With Easter approaching we thought we’d discuss the ins and outs of chocolate toxicity. Chocolate contains a chemical called theobromine (as well as a little caffeine). Humans metabolise theobromine and caffeine quickly, but dogs (and cats) take a lot longer to

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