Precipitation and temperature effects on mortality and lactation parameters of dairy cattle in California.
ABSTRACT Data from 3 commercial rendering companies located in different regions of California were analyzed from September 2003 through August 2005 to examine the relationship of dairy calf and cow mortality to monthly average daily temperature and total monthly precipitation respectively. Yearly average mortality varied between rendering regions from 2.1 to 8.1% for mature cows. The relationship between cow and calf monthly mortality and monthly average daily temperature was U-shaped. Overall, months with average daily temperatures less than 14 and greater than 24 degrees C showed substantial increases in both calf and cow mortality with calf mortality being more sensitive to changes in these temperature ranges than cow mortality. Temperature changes were reflected in a 2-fold difference between the minimum and maximum mortality in cows and calves. Precipitation showed a weak effect with calf mortality and no effect with cow mortality. Data from Dairy Herd Improvement Association were used from 112 California herds tested over a 24-mo period to examine the relationship of milk production and quality with monthly average daily temperature and monthly precipitation. Somatic cell count and percent milk fat were either weakly or not associated with monthly average daily temperature and total monthly precipitation. However, total monthly precipitation was negatively associated with test day milk per milking cow regardless of the dairy's geographical location. Housing-specific associations for test day milk per milking cow were greater for total monthly precipitation than monthly average daily temperature, with the strongest negative association seen for dairies that do not provide shelter for cows. This suggests that providing suitable housing for lactating dairy cattle may ameliorate the precipitation-associated decrease in test day milk per milking cow.
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ABSTRACT: The 2 studies described investigated seasonal variations of mortality and temperature-humidity index (THI)-mortality relationships in dairy cows. Mortality data were extracted from the Italian Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy databases, which contain records on cows older than 24 mo that died on a farm from all causes (98% of total records), were slaughtered in an emergency state, or were sent for normal slaughter but were sick in the preslaughter inspection (2% of total records). Both studies evaluated mortality data during a 6-yr period (2002 to 2007). The seasonal pattern study was conducted throughout Italy and was based on 320,120 deaths. An association between season and deaths was found for all 6 yr. Summer and spring were the seasons with the highest and lowest frequency of deaths (15,773.3 +/- 2,861 and 11,619.3 +/- 792.3), respectively, and within summer months, the number of deaths in July and August (5,435 +/- 284 and 5,756 +/- 676.2, respectively) was higher than in June (4,839 +/- 344.8). The THI-mortality relationships study was carried out only for deaths (51,240) reported for the Lombardia and Emilia Romagna regions. For this study, the mortality databases were integrated with THI data, which were calculated by using data from 73 weather stations. Each farm where deaths were recorded was assigned the THI values (maximum and minimum) calculated at the closest weather station for each day the events (deaths) were reported. Analysis of data indicated that approximate THI values of 80 and 70 were the maximum and minimum THI, respectively, above which the number of deaths in dairy farms starts to increase. Maximum and minimum THI values of 87 and 77 were the upper critical THI above which the risk of death for dairy cows becomes maximum. This study defined quantitative relationships between mortality risk and THI in dairy cows and may help to provide emergency interventions and mitigation measures, which may ensure survival of dairy cows and reduce replacement costs associated with heat stress-related mortality.Journal of Dairy Science 09/2009; 92(8):3781-90. · 2.57 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: 1. The role of energy in ecological processes has hitherto been considered primarily from the standpoint that energy supply is limited. That is, traditional resource-based ecological and evolutionary theories and the recent 'metabolic theory of ecology' (MTE) all assume that energetic constraints operate on the supply side of the energy balance equation. 2. For endothermic animals, we provide evidence suggesting that an upper boundary on total energy expenditure is imposed by the maximal capacity to dissipate body heat and therefore avoid the detrimental consequences of hyperthermia--the heat dissipation limit (HDL) theory. We contend that the HDL is a major constraint operating on the expenditure side of the energy balance equation, and that processes that generate heat compete and trade-off within a total boundary defined by heat dissipation capacity, rather than competing for limited energy supply. 3. The HDL theory predicts that daily energy expenditure should scale in relation to body mass (M(b)) with an exponent of about 0.63. This contrasts the prediction of the MTE of an exponent of 0.75. 4. We compiled empirical data on field metabolic rate (FMR) measured by the doubly-labelled water method, and found that they scale to M(b) with exponents of 0.647 in mammals and 0.658 in birds, not significantly different from the HDL prediction (P > 0.05) but lower than predicted by the MTE (P < 0.001). The same statistical result was obtained using phylogenetically independent contrasts analysis. Quantitative predictions of the model matched the empirical data for both mammals and birds. There was no indication of curvature in the relationship between Log(e) FMR and Log(e)M(b). 5. Together, these data provide strong support for the HDL theory and allow us to reject the MTE, at least when applied to endothermic animals. 6. The HDL theory provides a novel conceptual framework that demands a reframing of our views of the interplay between energy and the environment in endothermic animals, and provides many new interpretations of ecological and evolutionary phenomena.Journal of Animal Ecology 04/2010; 79(4):726-46. · 4.84 Impact Factor
Conference Proceeding: Implementation of a setup module for a plug-and-play UMTS smart antenna[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Although UTRA-UMTS foresees smart antennas operation, they have not been applied yet, due to their complexity and cost. This paper describes the implementation of a smart antenna prototype, focusing on the set-up module that allows the system to have a transparent behaviour regarding the Node-B. The implemented set-up module identifies the new users in the system, and it obtains the parameters that are needed by other processing modules. This paper describes the implemented steps for the identification and acquisition of user data. Furthermore, the results for a real time implementation in a DSP platform are presented, showing that the data are properly obtained and real time requirements are fulfilledPersonal, Indoor and Mobile Radio Communications, 2005. PIMRC 2005. IEEE 16th International Symposium on; 10/2005