Bedding system influences lying behaviour in dairy cows

Leach, K.A., Charlton, G.L., Green, M.J., Lima, E., Gibbons, J., Black, D. and Bradley, A.J. (2021) Bedding system influences lying behaviour in dairy cows. Veterinary Record.

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Background The nature and depth of bedding material have an important influence on cow lying behaviour and comfort. Increasing use of recycled manure solids (RMS) as bedding led to an investigation of the influence of this material on cow lying behaviour. Methods Leg mounted accelerometers were used to estimate daily lying time and number and duration of lying bouts in four groups of 40 cows. Each group spent two 2-week periods on each of four bedding systems: deep sand, deep RMS, sawdust on mattresses and RMS on mattresses. Results Total daily lying times were significantly shorter on both RMS treatments than on sawdust. Number of lying bouts per day was greater on sawdust than any other treatment, while lying bouts were 2.6 min longer on deep RMS and 9.3 min longer on sand, than on sawdust. Conclusions Greater depth and apparent softness of bedding material does not necessarily result in longer total daily lying times. RMS may have some characteristics that reduce its attraction as a bedding material for cows. The influence of bedding system on number and duration of lying bouts and the resulting total lying time appear complex.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Veterinary Health and Animal Sciences (from 1.08.20 to 31.08.21)
Depositing User: Mrs Rachael Giles
Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2021 09:59
Last Modified: 22 Nov 2022 04:30

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