Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Effects of two different rearing protocols for Holstein bull calves in the first 3 weeks of life on health status, metabolism and subsequent performance


Maccari, P; Wiedemann, S; Kunz, H-J; Piechotta, M; Sanftleben, P; Kaske, M (2015). Effects of two different rearing protocols for Holstein bull calves in the first 3 weeks of life on health status, metabolism and subsequent performance. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition, 99(4):737-746.

Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of weight gain of calves within the first 3 weeks of life on health status and subsequent performance. Holstein bull calves were reared either intensively (IR; individual hutches and ad libitum milk feeding for the first 3 weeks of life; n = 24), or according to the established protocol [ER; 4 l milk/day in hutches during week 1 and 720 g/day milk replacer (MR) from day 8 to 21 in a group pen; n = 24]. Water, hay and concentrates were freely available to all calves. From week 4, calves of both groups were housed together in a group pen and fed 720 g MR/day; step-down weaning was performed between week 5 and 10. Key metabolic blood parameters were analysed on day 2, 12, 21 and 70 of life. After weaning, all animals were fed concentrates and corn silage until slaughter at an age of 8 months. Within the first 3 weeks, average daily weight gain was threefold higher in IR calves in relation to ER calves (1.28 vs. 0.38 kg/day, p < 0.001). Neither incidence nor duration of scouring differed significantly between groups. Starter intake (week 4–10) was higher in IR calves in relation to ER calves (49.7 vs. 38.0 kg/calf, p = 0.006). Serum glucose, urea, albumin and insulin were higher at an age of 21 days in IR calves in relation to ER calves; no differences were obvious at an age of 70 days. Plasma GH and IGF-I concentrations revealed an uncoupling of the somatotropic axis in ER calves within the first 3 weeks of life. At slaughter, body weight of IR calves tended to be higher than that of the ER calves (320 vs. 309 kg, p = 0.07). In conclusion, intensive feeding and individual housing during the first 3 weeks of life had positive long-term effects on subsequent performance.

Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of weight gain of calves within the first 3 weeks of life on health status and subsequent performance. Holstein bull calves were reared either intensively (IR; individual hutches and ad libitum milk feeding for the first 3 weeks of life; n = 24), or according to the established protocol [ER; 4 l milk/day in hutches during week 1 and 720 g/day milk replacer (MR) from day 8 to 21 in a group pen; n = 24]. Water, hay and concentrates were freely available to all calves. From week 4, calves of both groups were housed together in a group pen and fed 720 g MR/day; step-down weaning was performed between week 5 and 10. Key metabolic blood parameters were analysed on day 2, 12, 21 and 70 of life. After weaning, all animals were fed concentrates and corn silage until slaughter at an age of 8 months. Within the first 3 weeks, average daily weight gain was threefold higher in IR calves in relation to ER calves (1.28 vs. 0.38 kg/day, p < 0.001). Neither incidence nor duration of scouring differed significantly between groups. Starter intake (week 4–10) was higher in IR calves in relation to ER calves (49.7 vs. 38.0 kg/calf, p = 0.006). Serum glucose, urea, albumin and insulin were higher at an age of 21 days in IR calves in relation to ER calves; no differences were obvious at an age of 70 days. Plasma GH and IGF-I concentrations revealed an uncoupling of the somatotropic axis in ER calves within the first 3 weeks of life. At slaughter, body weight of IR calves tended to be higher than that of the ER calves (320 vs. 309 kg, p = 0.07). In conclusion, intensive feeding and individual housing during the first 3 weeks of life had positive long-term effects on subsequent performance.

Statistics

Citations

8 citations in Web of Science®
5 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

1 download since deposited on 12 Feb 2015
0 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Veterinary Clinic > Department of Farm Animals
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
630 Agriculture
Date:2015
Deposited On:12 Feb 2015 12:48
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 19:05
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:0931-2439
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/jpn.12241

Download

Preview Icon on Download
Content: Published Version
Filetype: PDF - Registered users only
Size: 344kB
View at publisher

Article Networks

TrendTerms

TrendTerms displays relevant terms of the abstract of this publication and related documents on a map. The terms and their relations were extracted from ZORA using word statistics. Their timelines are taken from ZORA as well. The bubble size of a term is proportional to the number of documents where the term occurs. Red, orange, yellow and green colors are used for terms that occur in the current document; red indicates high interlinkedness of a term with other terms, orange, yellow and green decreasing interlinkedness. Blue is used for terms that have a relation with the terms in this document, but occur in other documents.
You can navigate and zoom the map. Mouse-hovering a term displays its timeline, clicking it yields the associated documents.

Author Collaborations