The greenhouse gas emissions intensity of herds with mastitis

Şeyda Özkan


Mastitis is an inflammatory disease of milking cows, causing production and economic losses in dairy farms. The main pathogens causing majority of the intramammary infections are Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus dysgalactiae, Escherichia coli and coagulase-negative Staphylococci. Here, we analysed the effect of mastitis on herd parameters such as milk yield, feed intake, replacement rate, gross margin and greenhouse gas emissions. The data were collected from the Norwegian Dairy Herd Recording System between 2010 and 2012. The farm data were recorded from 20 farms in Norway, based on health, fertility and breeding characteristics. SimHerd, a computer simulation model was used to estimate the impact of the observed levels of mastitis on herd parameters which were then fed into a whole farm model, HolosNor, to calculate the greenhouse gas emissions on the farm. The standard values provided in the SimHerd except for mastitis occurrence were applied in the scenario simulations. A further study is planned to parameterize each herd with specific herd characteristics in SimHerd so that herd specific estimates of the effect of mastitis on greenhouse gas emissions can be performed.

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Authors: Şeyda Özkan1, Søren Østergaard2, Turid Strøm3

Affiliations: 1Department of Animal and Aquacultural Sciences, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, PO Box 5003, 1432 Ås, Norway; 2Department of Animal Science, Aarhus University, Blichers Allé 20, 8830 Tjele, Denmark; 3Bioforsk Nasjonalt kompetansesenter for økologisk landbruk, Gunnars veg 6, 6630 Tingvoll, Norway

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