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Animal production

Wyss U., Arrigo Y.

Influence of the maize variety and the stage of development on the aerobic stability

In the years 2008 and 2010, the two maize varieties Amadeo and LG 32.52 were harvested in the milk ripeness, in the early and late dough stage and ensiled in 700 l containers. After opening the container, samples were taken to determine the fermentation quality and the aerobic stability with temperature measurements. With increasing development…
Animal production

Besier J., Strickler B., von Niederhäusern R., Wyss U.

Hay or haylage for horses: a comparison

In horse diets, hay is getting more and more replaced by haylage. In 2011, hay and haylage were produced in Avenches VD from an Italian ryegrass as well as from a mixture, which contained ten grasses and alfalfa. The conservation properties, the nutritional values and the microbiological quality of the feed were evaluated with regard…
Animal production

Schneider M. K., Homburger H., Scherer-Lorenzen M., Lüscher A.

Grazing intensity and ecosystem services in the alpine region

In the alpine summer-grazing area, grazing intensity is one of the most important management variables controlling vegetation and ecosystem services. In spite of this, grazing intensity is difficult to quantify on large, heterogeneous alpine pastures. For this reason, local grazing intensity on two alpine summer dairy farms in the canton of Obwalden and in the…
Animal production

Sutter M., Nemecek T., Thomet P.

Life cycle assessment of intensive and pasture-based dairy production systems

Swiss dairy farms must increasingly cope with climate protection, environmental conservation and the use of limited resources. In the context of the Hohenrain comparison of dairy production systems, a comprehensive assessment of the environmental impacts was conducted using the Swiss Agricultural Life Cycle Assessment method. The environmental strengths and weaknesses of seasonal full-pasture and indoor…
Animal production

Schmid D., Lanz S.

Feed-ration composition on Swiss dairy farms

As part of the 2014-2017 agricultural policy, the Swiss Federal Council is proposing a contribution for grasslandbased milk and meat production in the form of the socalled «production-system contributions». With a view to the structuring of this new instrument and its future evaluation, the current situation as regards the feeding of ruminants in Switzerland is…
Animal production

Sollberger E., Bracher A., Burren C., Spring P.

N-Efficacy in fattening pigs

In regions with high density of animal production, Import/Export-balances (IMPEX) are used to monitor the use of diets with reduced P- and N- concentrations. Based on the IMPEX data, the farms can claim a reduction in waste nutrients. The aim of the presentment study was to analyze 1665 IMPEX-balances from pig farms in the state…
Animal production

Willems H., Werder C., Kreuzer M., Leiber F.

Effect of grazing system on fattening performance and meat quality of lambs grazing alpine summer pastures

In Switzerland, the level of subsidy provided for summer grazing of sheep differs between grazing systems. They are higher for rotational grazing than for permanent pasture systems. In this controlled alpine grazing experiment, fattening performance and meat quality were compared between these two grazing systems. Fifty-five castrated male lambs (36.2±4.2 kg live weight, 27±3 weeks…

Determined and estimated nutritive value of chicory, birdsfoot trefoil and sainfoin

The assessment of the nutritional value of plants rich in condensed tannins (CT) stems from the models predicting the normal nutritional value. In order to verify the effects, this study compares the nutritional value of chicory (cychorium intybus), sainfoin (onobrychis viciifolia) and lotus (lotus corniculatus) obtained with data determined using animals (in vivo, in sacco)…
Animal production

Arrigo Y., Stoll P.

Estimate of the nutritive value of maize silage

In order to check and improve the prediction of their nutritive value, 12 maize silages were studied as a supplement to the previous trials. Two varieties (Amadeo and LG32,52) were harvested at three different stages over the course of two years. The silages were studied to determine organic-matter digestibility (OMD) in the case of sheep,…
Animal production

Staerfl S., Bosshard C., Graf C., Zeitz J., Kreuzer M., Soliva C.

Effect of season and feeding on methane emission from Swiss dairy cow slurry

Due to the lack of country-specific data, the so-called IPCC default values are often taken for calculating greenhouse gas budgets. The default value to be applied for Switzerland for the ultimate methane (CH4) production capacity (B0) of slurry amounts to 240 l CH4/kg volatile solids (VS). In the present study, slurry from 64 dairy farms…
Animal production

Steiner B., Keck M., Keller M., Weber K.

Comparison of drainage characteristics of traffic floor surfaces in cattle-housing systems

Soiled traffic floor surfaces in cattlehousing systems represent plane sources for ammonia emissions. For emission-reduction purposes, the influence of the gradient on the drainage behaviour of water was quantified on a pilot-plant scale for seven different traffic surfaces. The surfaces were uniformly soiled with a mixture of excrements and urine. Measuring parameters were the duration…

The microbiological quality of feedstuffs

The quality of a feedstuff is not only defined by the various nutrient contents, or by its composition in terms of raw materials, or its digestibility or its palatability, nor even by its appearance or sensory characteristics, but also by its hygienic status. This article presents a way of assessing the microbiological quality of feedstuff,…
Animal production

Stranzinger G., Achermann J., Fengtang Y., Burger D.

Chromosome studies and other investigations on equid crossings

Crossings between horses and donkeys are in nature possible and are used as mules or hinnies in agriculture. Other types of crossings are rare and scarcely investigated. Systematic experiments are only allowed with special agreements and are very time consuming and costly and therefore rare. In this report crossings between horse, Przewalski and donkey are…
Animal production

Fuhrer J., Calanca P.

Climate change affects welfare of dairy cows

Climate change is leading to higher temperatures across Switzerland, increasing the risk of heat stress in livestock. Analyzing a «Temperature-Humidity Index» at various locations, it could be shown that the risk for dairy cows already grew substantially on a daily average over the past 30 years, whereas the maximum of the index did not change…
Animal production

Burren A., Flury C., Aeschlimann C., Hagger C., Rieder S.

Population structure and genetic diversity of Swiss sheep breeds

The year 2010 was declared by the United Nations as the International year of biodiversity. During that year, the Swiss Sheep Breeding Association made herd book data of its four largest breeds available for genetic diversity analyses. Those were Brown Headed Meat Sheep (OX; n=10 858), Black Brown Mountain Sheep (BNP; n=10 964), Valais Black…