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Milking robot utilization, a successful precision livestock farming evolution
journal contributionposted on 2023-05-18, 22:27 authored by John, AJ, Clark, CEF, Mark FreemanMark Freeman, Kerrisk, KL, Garcia, SC, Halachmi, I
Automatic milking systems (AMS), one of the earliest precision livestock farming developments, have revolutionized dairy farming around the world. While robots control the milking process, there have also been numerous changes to how the whole farm system is managed. Milking is no longer performed in defined sessions; rather, the cow can now choose when to be milked in AMS, allowing milking to be distributed throughout a 24 h period. Despite this ability, there has been little attention given to milking robot utilization across 24 h. In order to formulate relevant research questions and improve farm AMS management there is a need to determine the current knowledge gaps regarding the distribution of robot utilization. Feed, animal and management factors and their interplay on levels of milking robot utilization across 24 h for both indoor and pasture-based systems are here reviewed. The impact of the timing, type and quantity of feed offered and their interaction with the distance of feed from the parlour; herd social dynamics, climate and various other management factors on robot utilization through 24 h are provided. This novel review draws together both the opportunities and challenges that exist for farm management to use these factors to improved system efficiency and those that exist for further research.
Department/SchoolTasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA)
PublisherCambridge University Press
Place of publicationUnited Kingdom
Rights statementCopyright 2016 The Animal Consortium