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Animal production

Probst St., Wasem D., Kobel D., Zehetmeier M., Flury Ch.

Greenhouse gas emissions from coupled dairy-beef production in Switzerland

Coupled dairy-beef systems are of major significance in Switzerland’s cattle sector. Using Swiss reference data, the present study modelled greenhouse gas emissions per cow and year for a range of different milk and meat yield levels. The study also determined the impact on greenhouse gas emissions of using a combination of sexed semen and beef…
Animal production

Signer-Hasler H., Burren A., Ammann P., Drögemüller C., Flury C.

Extent of genomic inbreeding in Swiss sheep and goat breeds

The development of modern technologies now allows thousands of genetic markers in an animal’s genome to be revealed by means of DNA genotyping. This information can be used to deduce genomic inbreeding. This is valuable for populations that have no, or only incomplete, pedigree information. Furthermore, differences in the inbreeding of full siblings can be…
Animal production

Bracher A.

Oil seed by-products as alternative protein sources for imported protein-rich feed

The protein-rich, solvent-extracted meals and press cakes of oilseeds are among the most important protein sources used in compound feed worldwide. In Switzerland, 85 % of oil seed by-products have to be imported. Rapeseed and sunflowers are the most important indigenous oilseeds. Domestic production is bound to contractually negotiated quantities and has thus limited expansion…
Animal production

Zähner M., Leinweber Th., Schrade S.

Cleaning quality and animal behaviour with the use of a dung-removal robot

The use of dung-removal robots on perforated flooring has not been widespread to date. Moreover, scientifically substantiated recommendations for their operation are lacking. In an experiment involving different cleaning frequencies with the Lely Discovery Mobile Barn Cleaner, floor soiling and the behaviour of the cows on perforated flooring were ascertained. The variant with an optimised…
Animal production

Kasper C., Ruiz-Ascacibar I., Stoll P., Bee G.

Genetic parameters of protein efficiency in a Swiss Large White pig population

Pork production contributes to environmental pollution through the emission of nitrogen compounds. In addition, pig fattening in Switzerland requires imports of soybean, since the protein requirement of feed cannot be met by domestic plant-protein sources alone. It is therefore desirable to improve protein efficiency, i.e. to achieve a similar protein uptake in the carcass with…
Animal production

Müller Richli M., Scheeder M.

Good fattening results despite reduced crude protein content in the feed

Feeding strategies to improve the nutritional value of pork and at the same time reduce the environmental burden were examined on three pig farms representing single-feed, two-phase and multi-phase feeding systems. The experimental feed was supplemented with selenium, vitamin E and crushed linseed. Furthermore, the protein content was reduced. Fattening runs with common feed served…
Animal production

Münger A., Eggerschwiler L., Silacci P., Dohme-Meier F.

Methane emissions from dairy cows: influence of oilseeds in the feed

The addition of fatty feed components to a dairy cow ration can influence ruminal fermentation, and hence methane formation in the rumen. In a study with 33 Holstein / Red Holstein dairy cows, the influence of two different types of oilseeds (extruded linseed and ground rapeseed) versus a control (rumen-stable fat) was investigated over a…
Animal production

Spengler Neff A., Baki C., Leiber F.

Milk instead of concentrate feed in claf rearing

To promote efficient grassland utilisation and reduce resource use, it is necessary to minimize the amount of concentrates fed to ruminants. Research findings and practical knowledge are available concerning dairy cow management without concentrates, but there is not much literature on rearing calves without concentrates. Textbooks on animal feeding usually recommend calf rearing with concentrates.…
Animal production

Rothacher M., Wyss U., Arrigo Y.

In vivo digestibility of maize silages harvested with different techniques

A trial was carried out to determine the organic-matter digestibility and nutritional value of whole-plant maize silages (WPMS’s) harvested in different ways. Four methods were compared: standard WPMS from the tower silo removed with a silo unloader, standard WPMS in bales, WPMS shredlage, and cob-enriched WPMS (power maize). According to the chemical analyses, the nutritional…

Digestibility of forage in mixed rations

The digestibility of the organic matter (DOM) of a forage, whether estimated in vitro via modelling or determined in vivo via experimentation, is a nutritive value considered in isolation. A ration, however, generally consists of a mixture of different forages and concentrates. This trial – consisting of an in vivo study with wethers – studies…
Animal production

Huguenin-Elie O., Nyfeler D., Ammann Ch., Latsch A., Richner W.

Influence of slurry application technique on yield and nitrogen flows in grassland

Measurement series carried out in Switzerland during different seasons as well as an overview of the literature show that with the use of a trailing hose spreader or trailing shoe spreader, 2–3 kg more nitrogen per hectare ends up in the soil per instance of slurry-spreading than with a broadcast spreader, owing to the escape…
Animal production

Häller B., Van der Maas J., Moser S., Kempter A., Mulser E., Hofstetter P.

System comparison Hohenrain II: Research combined with knowledge exchange enhances impact on practice

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…
Animal production

Münger A., Denninger Th., Martin C., Eggerschwiler L., Dohme-Meier F.

Methane emission from grazing dairy cows: comparison of methods

Methane emission from free-ranging ruminants can be measured in different ways. In a study with 13 grazing dairy cows, Agroscope compared two methods. The sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) tracer technique is an established method, but its application is challenging and laborious. Before the measurements started, the cows were equipped with a calibrated permeation tube releasing SF6…
Animal production

Wyss U., Schlegel P., Frey H., Akert F., Mulser E., Reidy B.

System comparison Hohenrain II: Nutrient and mineral content of conserved forage

From 2014 to 2016, the Hohenrain II Project compared three different grassland-based milk production systems with either full grazing, or with partial grazing with indoor feeding of fresh herbage and reduced or increased concentrate supplementation. From 2013 to 2015, the nutrient and mineral content of the conserved forage (hay, grass silage and artificially dried herbage)…
Animal production

Mulser E., Ineichen S., Sutter M., Hofstetter P., Probst St.

Animal performance with fresh grass feeding

Partial grazing with indoor feeding of fresh grass is an important feeding system for Swiss dairy farms. From 2014 to 2016, three production systems – partial grazing with indoor feeding of fresh grass with reduced (EGKF; 418 kg), and increased concentrate supplementation (EGKFplus; 1161 kg) was compared with full-time grazing with reduced concentrate supplementation (FG;…
Animal production

Wyss U., Schlegel P., Frey H., Reidy B.

Mineral content of herbage

Full grazing or indoor feeding of fresh herbage and partial grazing are common feeding systems for dairy cows in Switzerland. Project Hohenrain II investigated a comparison of three different grassland-based milk production systems, a partial grazing with indoor feeding of fresh grass with reduced and increased concentrate supplementation was compared with the full grazing system…
Animal production

Ineichen S., Akert F., Frey H., Wyss U., Hofstetter P., Schmid H., Gut W., Reidy B.

Project description and quality of fresh grass

Partial grazing with indoor feeding of fresh grass is an important feeding system for Swiss dairy farms. From 2014 to 2016, three production systems – ’partial grazing with indoor feeding of fresh grass with reduced (EGKF, 418 kg) and increased concentrate supplementation (EGKFplus; 1161 kg) was compared with full-time grazing (FG) with reduced concentrate supplementation…
Animal production

Pacheco A. J., Pittet A., Ampuero Kragten S., Arrigo Y.

In vivo and in vitro organic matter digestibility determined with the Ankom DaisyII Incubator

A comparison of organic matter digestibility (OMd) determined in vivo and in vitro was conducted with samples of grass, grass silage, hay, and maize silage (n = 20 per feed) from the Agroscope Posieux collection. The in vitro method was carried out with the Ankom «DaisyII» Incubator (Ankom Technology Corp., Fairport, NY, USA). The coefficients…
Animal production

Frutschi Mascher V., Altermath J., Notz Ch.

Reduction of antibiotic use and increase in feeding autonomy in milk production

In dairy farming, the use of antibiotics and the feeding with concentrates are challenged by public opinion and by economic considerations. Antibiotics are used to preserve the health of cattle and the quality of milk, however their use is expensive and can result in antibiotic resistances in human and animal pathogens. It is now urgent…