Transferring knowledge between practitioners, researchers, educators and extensionists was a key concern of the ’Optimisation of milk production with fresh grass feeding’ project. The study groups of the participating farms were particularly important. They provided the foundations and data necessary for establishing research questions and worked intensively to implement the new work practices. This triggered numerous innovations on the farms and supported the transfer of knowledge through concrete actions. To achieve this effect, an important precondition had to be fulfilled: the careful selection of highly motivated farms willing to exchange thoughts and experiences freely with each other. Additional success factors were the intensive support of the project leaders and also, unusually, of moderators as important hubs of communication among the participants. The combination of these factors placed high demands on all concerned and these were largely met in this project, as our investigations show.
Pontiggia A., Münger A., Ammer S., Philipona C., Bruckmaier R. M., Keil N.M., Dohme-Meier F.
Even in temperate climate zones, an increase in the ambient temperature and solar radiation can cause heat stress in grazing dairy cows. Agroscope studied the physiological changes in cows caused by increasing heat load.
Lazzari G., Münger A., Heimo D., Seifert S., Camarinha-Silva A., Borda-Molina D., Zähner M., Schrade S., Kreuzer M., Dohme-Meier F.
In dairy cows, herbage-based diets often lead to increased nitrogen excretion. Tanniferous sainfoin and extract of acacia can reduce nitrogen excretion from urine and thus ammonia volatilization from slurry.
Excessive nitrogen inputs from the air lead to over-fertilisation of sensitive ecosystems. Continuous feeding optimisation can make an important contribution to reducing ammonia losses and thus nitrogen inputs.