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EFFECTS OF MAGNETIC FIELD DURING GESTATION ON DAIRY COWS AND THEIR CALVES

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org

Citation:  Pp. 325-332 in Fifth International Dairy Housing Proceedings of the 29-31 January 2003 Conference (Fort Worth, Texas USA)  701P0203.(doi:10.13031/2013.11639)
Authors:   J.J.J. Broucek, C. W. Arave, M. Uhrincat, A. Sandor, S. Mihina, A. Hanus, P. Kisac
Keywords:   Magnetic field, Animal housing, Dairy cows, Calves, Milk yield, Behavior

We used 25 Holstein cows. The cows of a trial group (13) were exposed to a low magnetic field (MF) at a flux density ranging from 42.1 µT (head) to 21.9 µT (breech) during the 196th to 258th day of gestation, while cows of a control group (12) were in an environment with a zero MF.

There was a significant difference (*P<0.05) between trial and control groups in 305 days lactation milk production (6910.5 kg vs. 7423.1 kg). Days open and calving intervals were not significantly shorter in the trial group. 8 bulls and 4 heifers were born in the trial group, and 6 bulls and 6 heifers in the control group. No significant differences between groups of cows and calves were found in the growth of live body weight during the whole trial.

Maze learning ability tests were conducted for calves at the age of 15 weeks. Maze behavior was not different, but exploratory behavior was intensified in the trial group. An open-field test was applied at three ages, A1 (16 weeks), A2 (25 weeks) and A3 (12 months). There was no impact of the magnetic field in the prenatal period on the open-field behavior and relationship of calves to humans..

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