[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of body weight (BW) change during the early postpartum period and BW on day 50 post partum on the subsequent expression of estrus and fertility at first insemination before day 90 post partum. The data were derived from 1036 postpartum cows reaching 90 days in milk. The following data were recorded for each animal: lactation number, daily milk production at day 50 post partum, calving date, days in milk at estrus and at AI, insemination date, insemination number, inseminating bull, AI technician and body weight at calving, at day 50 post partum and at AI. Of the 1036 cows registered, 817 (78.9%) showed first estrus before day 90 post partum and were inseminated. Using logistic regression procedures and based on the odds ratio a one unit (kg) increase in the daily milk production at day 50 post partum and a one unit (kg) decrease in the BW between calving and day 50 post partum were related to a 1.03-fold increase and a 0.97-fold decrease in the estrus expression rate before day 90 post partum, respectively. Of the 817 cows inseminated before day 90 post partum, 437 became pregnant (53.5%). A one unit increase in the BW at day 50 post partum produced a 1.003-fold increase in the early fertility rate. Pregnancy rate before day 90 was also influenced by the season at calving, bull providing semen and technician. In conclusion, the register of BW during the postpartum period may be a useful tool for evaluating the nutritional status and its relationship with the subsequent reproductive efficiency in dairy cows.
Journal of Reproduction and Development 03/2012; 58(3):366-70. · 1.76 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to determine possible relationships between farm climate conditions, recorded from day 0 to day 40 post-artificial insemination (AI), and late embryo/early fetal loss in high producing dairy cows. Pregnancy was diagnosed by rectal ultrasonography between 28 and 34 days post-AI. Fetal loss was registered when a further 80- to 86-day diagnosis proved negative. Climate variables such as air temperature and relative humidity (RH) were monitored in the cubicles area for each 30-min period. Temperature-humidity indices (THI); cumulative stressful values and episodes of acute change (defined as the mean daily value 1.2 times higher or lower than the mean daily values of the 10 previous days) of the climate variables were calculated. The data were derived from 759 cows in one herd. A total of 692 pregnancies (91.2%) carried singletons and 67 (8.8%) carried twins. No triplets were recorded. Pregnancy loss was recorded in 6.7% (51/759) of pregnancies: 5.6% (39/692) in single and 17.9% (12/67) in twin pregnancies. Using logistic regression procedures, a one-unit increase in the daily cumulative number of hours for the THI values higher than 85 during days 11-20 of gestation caused a 1.57-fold increase in the pregnancy loss, whereas the likelihood of fetal loss increased by a factor of 1.16 for each additional episode of acute variation for the maximum THI values during gestation days 0-40. THI values higher than 85 and episodes of acute variation for the maximum THI values were only recorded during the warm and cool periods, respectively. The presence of twins led to a 3.98-fold increase in pregnancy loss. In conclusion, our findings show that cumulative stressful and episodes of acute variation of climatic conditions can compromise the success of gestation during both the cool and warm periods of the year. Twin pregnancy was confirmed as a main factor associated with pregnancy loss.
International Journal of Biometeorology 09/2009; 54(1):93-8. · 2.59 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to determine if the factors affecting the abortion rate in dairy herds with high incidence of Neospora-associated abortions are different in pregnancies of cows and heifers chronically infected with Neospora caninum. In heifers (n = 229), an increase in the cumulative number of days with a mean relative humidity (RH) lower than 60% during the second trimester of gestation increases the risk of abortion. Yet, the likelihood of abortion was 7.6 times lower for pregnant heifers inseminated with Limousin bull semen, compared with those inseminated with Holstein-Friesian bull semen. In pregnancies of parous cows (n = 521), an increase in rainfall and in the cumulative number of days with a mean RH lower than 60% during the second trimester of gestation increased the abortion rate. However, in contrast, an increase in the lactation number produced a decrease in the abortion rate, with a likelihood of abortion 4.8 times lower for pregnant cows inseminated with Limousin bull semen, and three times lower for those inseminated with Belgian Blue bull semen, compared with dairy cows inseminated with Holstein-Friesian bull semen. Finally, the likelihood of abortion was 3.2 times lower for pregnancies of parous cows with low antibody titres against N. caninum (6-30 units) as compared to those with high antibody titres (>/=30 units), whereas in heifers this variable had no effect. The practical recommendations of the present study include the control of the cow environment during the second trimester of gestation, the priority of culling for parous cows with higher antibody titres against N. caninum and the insemination of Neospora-seropositive cows with semen from the Limousin breed.
Reproduction in Domestic Animals 01/2009; 45(4):699-705. · 1.39 Impact Factor