Bìol. Tvarin, 2019, volume 21, issue 2, pp. 21–24


I. Fodor1, L. Kern2, O. G. Varga-Balogh2, Gy. Gábor2, L. Ózsvári1

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1University of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Veterinary Forensics, Law and Economics,
István út. 2, Budapest, 1078, Hungary
2Research Institute for Animal Breeding, Nutrition and Meat Science, National Agricultural Research and Innovation Centre, Herceghalom,
Szent-Györgyi Albert út. 4, Gödöllő 2100, Hungary

The aim of our study was to quantify the effect of twinning and stillbirth on the main reproductive parameters, and to estimate the resulting economic loss on large-scale commercial dairy farms.

The data of 3.660 calvings that occurred on five large Hungarian Holstein-Friesian farms in 2016 and 2017 were analysed retrospectively. Information about twin calvings, stillbirths and uterine treatments were gathered. The main reproductive indices (i.e. calving to conception interval — CCI, services per conception — SPC, and first service conception risk — CR1) were calculated based on cow-level data. Statistical analyses were performed by using linear and logistic regression, and Dunnett-test. The economic losses related to twinning and stillbirth were estimated by partial budget analysis (1 EUR = 320 HUF).

Overall, twinning and stillbirth occurred in 4.1 % and 6.9 % of the calving events. Twinning was more likely, whereas stillbirth was less likely in multiparous cows (odds ratio [OR]: 4.18 and 0.64, P<0.0001 and P=0.0015, respectively). Following twin calving, CCI and SPC were increased by 12.8 days and by 2.8, respectively, whereas CR1 was reduced by 7.1 percentage points. Twinning caused an estimated loss of 50.4 EUR/case. The analysed reproductive parameters were not impaired after stillbirth. Although, the reduction of calf number and the excess semen usage led to 112.5 EUR estimated loss per stillbirth case, on average.

Twinning and stillbirths are significant sources of economic loss on dairy farms, therefore, their prevalence should be reduced.


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