Effects of once versus twice daily milking throughout lactation on milk yield and milk composition in dairy goats

A. A.K. Salama, X. Such, G. Caja, M. Rovai, R. Casals, E. Albanell, M. P. Marín, A. Martí

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72 Citations (Scopus)


The effects of once (1X) vs. twice (2X) daily milking throughout lactation on milk yield, milk composition, somatic cell count (SCC), and udder health were studied in 32 Murciano-Granadina dairy goats. Goats were assigned at wk 2 of lactation to two treatment groups; once daily milking at 0900 (1X, n = 17), or twice daily milking at 0900 and 1700 (2X, n = 15). Milk yield was recorded weekly until wk 28, and milk composition and SCC were evaluated for each individual udder half at each milking at wk 2 and 4 of lactation and then, monthly until the end of the experiment. Once daily milking resulted in an 18% reduction in the yield of 4% fat-corrected milk compared to twice daily milking (1.61 vs. 1.95 L/d, respectively). This reduction was more marked from wk 2 to 12 than in mid and late lactation. Response to milking frequency also varied according to parity number where goats of less than four parities suffered more milk yield losses during 1X than older goats. Milk of 1X goats contained higher percentages of total solids (13.6 vs. 12.9%), fat (5.10 vs. 4.62%) and casein (2.57 vs. 2.35%) than milk of 2X goats, but milk protein percentage did not differ between treatments (3.28 vs. 3.20%). Yields of total solids, fat, protein and casein tended to be higher for 2X than 1X. Milk SCC did not differ between treatments. We conclude that application of once daily milking in Murciano-Granadina dairy goats moderately reduced milk yield without negative effects on milk composition and udder health. Losses in milk yield would be reduced if 1X is practiced during mid- or late lactation and in older goats. An increase in labor productivity and a higher farmer's standard of living is also expected.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1673-1680
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2003


  • Dairy goat
  • Milk production
  • Once daily milking
  • Somatic cell count


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