The general objective of this project is to evaluate, in small dairy rumiants, the secretion and storage of milk in the udder, its factors of variation, as well as the effect on them of differnt lactation management strategies and routines of milking, with the purposes of favouring the adaptation of these species to the mechanical milking, disminishing the milk production cost, and improving the work conditions of the farmers. The existence of animals with different mechanical milking aptitude, as in ewes of Manchega breed and in goats of Murciano-Granadina breed, has been taken in consideration, comparing the strategies and routines based on this aptitude. On a more concrete way, in the experiences to develop during the 3 years of duration of the project, the short and long term effects of different intervals between milkings will be studied with the purpose of assessing the physiological importance of the number of daily milkings and the maintenance of a constant time interval among them, studying also their consequences on the production and the composition of milk, and the udder health. In addition, the long -term consequences of the elimination of a milking will be valued during the weekends, to evaluate their possible implementation as a farm practice. Finally, the effect of the suppression of the dry period between lactations on the physiology of the mammary gland will be verified, evaluating the apoptosis and the cellular proliferation, as well as the milk production in the following lactation. In all the experiences will be evaluated the effects on the milk production in the following lactation. In all the expriences will be evaluated the effects on the milk production and composition (fat, crude protein, casein, true protein, NPN and dry matter), on the udder health (somatic cell count and bacteriology), and on the aptitude to mechanical milking.
|Effective start/end date||1/12/02 → 1/12/05|
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