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Development of Rapid electronic mastitis test

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

Citation:  Paper number  131595773,  2013 Kansas City, Missouri, July 21 - July 24, 2013. (doi: @2013
Authors:   P Tongel, J Broucek
Keywords:   Rapid electronic mastitis test electrical conductivity measurement mastitis indication dairy cow milk.

Abstract. Rapid electronic mastitis test (REM test), which is suitable for quick mastitis monitoring of the herd of dairy cows, has been developed in our Institute. It consists of five measurement chambers, where four of them are for milk electrical conductivity measurement and the fifth, the common, is for temperature measurement. The third generation of REM test was designed and constructed in this year. It was found out in our previous experiments, that the accuracy of milk electrical conductivity measurement is crucial for mastitis indication. From this reason the measurement of accuracy and reliability has to be done. The accuracy of measurement was measured at first in laboratory conditions, and then the accuracy and reliability were evaluated in practical conditions. The results have shown the accuracy was excellent (1 % from measurement range) and the reliability was suitable for practical use. The statistical value of electrical conductivity of healthy cows was 4.8 mS/cm (sd 0.4 mS/cm) and cows with mastitis was 6.4 mS/cm (sd 0.9 mS/cm). The difference between them was significant (p<0.01). In the experiment in practical conditions we have found out that absolute EC values of healthy cow can change up to 10 mS/cm between milking but the differences of EC between quarters are lesser than 0.5 mS/cm. Absolute value of milk EC of single quarter has substantially lesser sensitivity in mastitis monitoring then IQD (inter quarter difference). The differences of EC between quarters in the healthy udder were under 0.5 mS/cm. If the difference of EC of some quarter in the udder is higher than 0.5 mS/cm, than the EC of the quarter with the lowest value then this quarter with higher EC is suspicious of mastitis. When EC values of all quarters in the udder are higher than 6.0 mS/cm and differences between quarters are lesser than 0.5 mS/cm, than the cow is suspicious of another illness than mastitis. The higher absolute values the higher suspicious of illness. The correlation coefficient between absolute value of EC and SCC of single quarters was r = 0.63. The sensitivity of the mastitis detection by means of milk EC measurement was calculated as 87 % and the reliability 92 %. It was evaluated for IQD with threshold difference 0.5 mS/cm and for cows with mastitis which have SCC>500 000. On the basis of our findings and our previous experiments we can say the using of REM test in mastitis monitoring is suitable for daily monitoring of dairy cows especially for cows on their first lactation. This research has been done with financial support "MLIEKO No. 26220220098" supported by the Operational Program Research and Development funded from the European Regional Development Fund and project APVV-0632-10 of the Slovak Research and Development Agency, Bratislava.

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