Why have a Milking – Time Test

The Farmer received my dynamic milking time report it stated he had 70 percent milking efficiency

I explained the reason for this reference was to still further reduce mastitis and maintain milk quality; farmers need to keep milking equipment working correctly. However, milking efficiency should be considered from two other viewpoints, the amount of time the milking cluster is attached to the udder (unit on time) and the percent of unit on time that milk is flowing at or near maximum. When milk isn’t flowing while the unit is attached, it is not only unproductive, but more importantly, damages the teat tissue, which could increase the risk of mastitis and decrease milk yield

A lot of dairy farms have their milking equipment tested and maintained on a routine basis. Although proper equipment function is necessary for milking efficiency, it does not necessarily guarantee it. Two managing areas that could lead to poor milking efficiency are milking routines that don’t achieve consistent milk let down and over milking. Either one of these problems can leave cows “high and dry” for a period of time and expose teats to high vacuum levels. Poor milk let down or what is commonly called bimodal milking.

During teat stimulation before milking, nerves carry an electric signal to the brain. The brain then releases oxytocin into the blood and then to the udder. It takes about 1 to 2 minutes for oxytocin levels to increase in blood to optimally contract muscle cells around the milk ducts, which then squeeze the milk down toward the teats. The two important points about this oxytocin release are enough teat stimulation (at least 10 seconds of actual physical touching) and the duration of the lag time, that is, the time interval between when teats are first stimulated until the cluster is attached. Unfortunately, with increasing herd size, the number of cows that can be milked through the parlour per hour is often identified as one of the choke points of herd capacity. Thus, parlour efficiency is emphasized at the expense of milking efficiency.

Rough handling shouting and general lack of understanding of cows will lead to Adrenalin release.

Most modern milking machines have huge effective reserves so fall-off vacuum is not an issue , even when two units are placed at one time the vacuum on the adjacent cluster is stable ,

Milking machine equipment has evolved so too has the operator who needs to understand the factors of the milking cycle. lsdprior