n Stockfarm - Managing heat stress in dairy cows - genetics & handling

Volume 9 Number 12
  • ISSN : 2221-7304


It is a well-known fact that high summer temperatures result in lower milk production and income. Despite this, surprisingly little research has been conducted on the subject in South Africa. This likely explains why so many ill-suited shelter systems are constructed on farms. All expectations are that climate change will see temperatures rising with less rain and more sunshine hours per day. Although the optimum ambient temperature for dairy cows is 10 to 18°C, they are still comfortable between -5 and 21°C. These are temperatures generally experienced during the winter months in South Africa. An ambient temperature above 24°C increases the body temperature and respiratory rate of cows. Heat stress can be seasonal or may occur during short periods of excessively high temperatures (heatwave conditions).

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error