UF UNIVERSITY of
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS)
Department of Animal Sciences
airy Upda e
Quarterly Newsletter Vol. 10 No. 2 Spring 2010
Introduction: Courtney Davis
My name is Courtney Davis. I am the new
Dairy/Water Quality Extension Agent in Okeechobee
County. Pat Miller was the former agent who retired in
August of 2009. I was the Glades County Extension
Agent for two years before coming to the Okeechobee
County Extension Office. I am
I originally from North Florida
Where my family is involved in
production agriculture. I am
married to an Okeechobee
resident and am the proud
mother of little boy who was
born in October of 2009. I look
forward to learning more
about the dairy industry in
Okeechobee and surrounding counties. If I can help you
with anything or you have any questions, please feel
free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling the
office at (863) 763-6469, located at 458 Highway 98
North, Okeechobee, FL 34972-2303.
Introduction: Chris Holcomb
The 4-H Youth Dairy Program is in full swing for
2010. Chris Holcomb has returned to Florida from New
York and has been put in charge of the youth programs.
Chris graduated from the University of Florida in 2000
with his Masters Degree in Dairy
Nutrition before moving, with his
wife, to New York. In New York
they started a dairy operation
and developed their very own ice
cream that was produced using
milk from their dairy herd.
Chris participated in the
Florida 4-H dairy program as a
youth and has a strong passion
for the program. Many dates and events are already
planned for the upcoming year and we are looking
forward to one of the best years ever. We will be
visiting many of our Florida farms throughout the year
and look forward to a great year. If you would like to
volunteer or know of anyone that may be interested in
becoming involved with the dairy program please let
Chris know. The focus of the dairy program will shift
slightly from where it was, to a more practical dairy
farm-based program. Those youth exiting the program
will be more prepared to enter the industry and
become the leaders of the future. Many of the
traditional events will continue, as well as the return of
some older programs, and the implementation of some
new ones. The goal of the program will not only be to
educate the current participants but to draw as many
new members as possible. The program however will
not only focus on youth but dairy leaders as well. We do
have one of the best volunteer leader groups in the
state, as well as the country and efforts will be made to
make sure that this remains true.
Chris will be located in Bartow, FL and would
welcome anybody to stop by or give a call and let him
know of any suggestions, comments, or just to talk. If
anyone is into Facebook, there is a page set-up "Florida
4-H Dairy" that will also keep you up to date on what is
going on with the program. Chris can be contacted at
(863) 519-8677, PO Box 9005, Drawer HS03, Bartow, FL
33831, or at email@example.com.
It's Spring Cleaning Time Again! # 15
David R. Bray
Now is the time to prepare for the long hot
summer. I think it is more important this year due to
these depressed times when we need to be more
efficient and productive.
1. Clean out high organic matter dirt (MUD) in
pastures and lots and add new dirt, especially in
2. Clean your barn cooling fans now, and whenever
they look dirty. Dirty fan shields can reduce fan
efficiency by 50%. If cows are in the barn or holding
area, run fans 24 hours a day; this not only moves
air to cool cows, it also helps to remove moisture
and dry the place out.
3. Make sure your sprinklers, foggers, etc., work. It
was a cold winter, many pipes froze and/or broke,
and dirty nozzles don't add much water. Check
timers for the proper time for adding water;
constant water is not as efficient as intermittent
sprinkling and saves water. Set your sprinkler
thermostat at 75 degrees F or lower during the hot
season. Sprinklers need to run at night because
cows get hotter at night than during daytime on
those hot nights. You need timers to control
sprinklers at night, so they only run when cows are
eating and standing at the feed line. Running
sprinklers when cows are in the stalls will waste
great volumes of water and raise the humidity in
4. Clean and rebuild your pulsators, wash out and
change the filters on your vacuum controller,
(unless you have a variable speed drive); make sure
all ATOs work.
5. Replace all milk hoses, wash hoses, pulsator hoses
and jetter cup holders. Replace all rubber hoses
that may be in the milk house that may add water
to the pipeline and/or bulk tank wash. These hoses
harbor Pseudomonas and Coliforms and can raise
your bacteria count. If rubber hoses are used to
wash udders, change them also.
6. Check every cow in the herd for blind quarters;
band the cow's legs so they are not milked. This will
lower your SCC and SPC. Consider drying off or
killing these quarters.
7. Replace all of your floor mounted cow wash
sprinkler nozzles once a year. Spring is a good time
to do this. They not only clean cows, they cool cows
also. Several short wash cycles are more efficient
and use less water.
8. Check the pipeline and bulk tank chemical
concentrations. If you change brands or suppliers,
they may need to be checked.
9. Clean your condenser fins on your milk coolers;
dirty fans cut down cooling and efficiency and you
get warmer milk at higher electric costs.
10. Mow and spray careless weeds in all pastures;
calves, heifers, dry cows.
11. Cull your chronic mastitis cows now, it will lower
your cell count and your help is sick of treating
12. Clean out the back third to half of your free stalls at
least 10-12" deep and add new sand. Keep your
stalls bedded every 4-5 days and groomed daily.
13. Clean out cooling ponds: pump out the water, clean
out the sludge and spread it someplace where the
cows do not have access to it.
14. Let ponds sit dry for the sun to work on the
bacteria. Mycoplasma and other nasty stuff live in
ponds. You must clean them out, at least once a
year if you continuously add water to the pond. If
you DO NOT continuously add water, you need to
sample the ponds for Mycoplasma and pump and
clean out the ponds once or twice during the
15. Keep a stiff upper lip, if you made it through last
year, you can make it through this year.
Contact Dave Bray at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (352) 392-
SMI Quality Program takes Effect on April 1, 2010.
Are you ready?
David R. Bray
Southeast Milk, Inc., will charge penalties for
Somatic Cell Count (SCC) monthly averages over
700,000 cells/ml or bacteria Count monthly averages
over 90,000. The Preliminary Incubation Count (PI
Count) penalty also goes in affect April 1, 2010 for
monthly averages over 100,000.
Do you have a high SCC herd now?
1. Get a bulk tank culture done on the herd, two
weeks in a row.
2. Strip every quarter of every cow in the herd. This
should be done by someone in management or
ownership in the dairy, not by the guy you hired last
3. Do something with those cows with high SCC
quarters. If she has been treated more than 5
episodes this lactation, dry that quarter off, kill it, if
a small herd get a quarter milker and keep that
quarter's milk out of the tank or cull the cow. Dry
the cow off early if she is pregnant.
4. If you have a bunch of junk cows, chronic cows, cull
5. Treat the quarter with a commercial tube, cleaning
the teat end off with alcohol pads. Follow label
directions, some drugs need to be given at 12 hour
intervals. Do what the label says.
6. Treat or cull enough cows to be below the penalty
7. Determine what kind of bacteria you have in the
herd from the bulk tank results. If you have a
veterinarian you should have some input from him
or her. If not, I would be happy to discuss the
options with you.
8. Figure out how you got into this mess and how to
get out of it. Milk clean dry udders, post dip every
quarter milked, keep your cows in as clean a place
as possible, rebuild your pulsators, clean your
vacuum controller, dry treat every cow going dry,
and mow your careless weeds in all pastures.
9. Cull junk cows and don't make more junk cows!
High SPC cows?
1. A bulk tank analysis would help to make a decision;
if you have low SCC, low pathogen levels you have
eliminated cows, if high see above in high SCC.
2. Cooling is easy. Is the milk cooling fast enough,
temperature low enough? You need a
3. Get the system checked, clean the cooling fins,
check if the agitator is working, is the tank iced up,
and get it checked.
4. Cleaning. Is your hot water temperature 1600 F at
the start of wash? 1200F at the dump cycle? Is the
air injector working properly?
5. Have your chemicals changed? Inexpensive
chemicals are usually less concentrated and more
are needed. Are you sanitizing the tank less than a
hour before using it? If you use chlorine, some acid
rinse sanitizers have a long time limit.
6. Change all rubber hoses, gaskets, jetter cups in the
parlor twice a year. Change liners every 1200 cow
milkings or per label directions. Change all rubber
parlor hoses and milk house hoses at least once a
year, don't chase milk with water, and don't drink
out of them either.
1. Poor milking hygiene, dirty conditions in lots, stalls
and the parlor.
2. Poor wash up procedures and/or sanitizing of
3. Poor or slow milk cooling; milk not cooled below
380 F, blends should not exceed 480F.
4. Poor water quality.
5. Milk clean dry udders and teats, have proper wash
up and sanitizing of milking equipment, cool your
milk cold and as quickly as possible.
Contact Dave Bray at drbrayvufl.edu or call (352) 392-
Results Dairy Extension Survey
Albert De Vries and Mary Sowerby
UF Dairy Extension is continuously interested in
obtaining feedback regarding our extension programs.
One such extension program is the annual Florida Dairy
Production conference which has been held annually for
46 years. Attendance of this conference has been
around 100 people the last several years, varying from
students to allied industry to dairy producers. However,
we would like to attract more dairy producers. To learn
more about the future direction of annual Florida Dairy
Production Conference, we handed out a one page
survey form at the Southeast Milk Inc. annual meeting
held in Ocala, FL, on January 12, 2010. Forty-one Florida
dairy producers completed the survey. Survey questions
and answers are as follows:
2010 Dairy Extension Survey results (41 respondents)
People from my farm/firm have attended the annual Florida
Dairy Production Conference:
Not in the last 5 years
1to 3 times in the last 5 years
4 or 5 times in the last 5 years
Having the annual Florida Dairy Production conference for my
Very important 7 17%
Somewhat important 24 59%
Not important 9 22%
The annual Florida Dairy Production conference should be
Gainesville 20 49%
Ocala 8 20%
Elsewhere 1 2%
Does not matter 14 34%
Reason(s) nobody from my farm/firm has attended the annual
Florida Dairy Production Conference in the last 3 years is/are
Location 1 2%
Program not relevant enough 9 22%
Expensive registration 3 7%
We had other obligations 16 39%
Mark all University of Florida Dairy Extension formats that are
important to you:
Full day conference 14 34%
Half day conference 15 37%
Field day on farm 27 66%
Local meeting in my area, e.g. Extension office 20 49%
Newsletter 30 73%
Extension personnel visits to my farm/firm 13 32%
Other 1 2%
University of Florida Dairy Extension meetings should:
Present the latest applied research 29 71%
Have dairy producer panels 26 63%
Discuss markets, general economics, trends 24 59%
Other 1 2%
In addition to the survey, we are contacting dairy
producer organizations to see how we can strengthen
the Dairy Production Conference and possibly attract
more dairy producers. No date has been set yet for the
2010 Florida Dairy Production Conference. We'll keep
UF Team wins Gold Award in North American
Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge
Students from the University of Florida won a Gold
Award placing in the Ninth Annual North American
Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) held April 9-10,
2010, in Visalia, Calif. Hosted by California Polytechnic
State University and California State University, Fresno,
28 teams from the United States and two teams from
The team from the University of Florida consisted of
Candy Munz, Stephanie Croyle, Nicholas Jenkins and C.J.
Middleton. Mary Sowerby and Albert De Vries coached
NAIDC is an innovative two-day competition for
students representing dairy science programs at North
American universities. It enables students to apply
theory and learning to a real-world dairy, while working
as part of a four-person team.
The University of Florida team competing in the 9"' North
American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge held in Visalia,
California. From left: Nick Jenkins, Mary Sowerby (coach),
Candy Munz, Stephanie Croyle, and C. J. Middleton.
Day One of NAIDC began with each team receiving
information about a working dairy, including production
and farm management data. After an in-person
inspection of one of four designated dairies,
participants interviewed the herd managers. Then, each
team developed a farm analysis and presentation,
including recommendations for nutrition, reproduction,
milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial
Day Two was presentation day. Team members
presented recommendations to a panel of judges and
then fielded questions from the judges. Presentations
were evaluated, based on the analysis and
recommendations. The evening concluded with a
reception and awards banquet.
The North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge
was established as a management contest to
incorporate all phases of a specific dairy business. It
strives to incorporate a higher-learning atmosphere
with practical application to help prepare students for
careers in the dairy industry. Supported financially
through generous donations by agribusinesses and
coordinated by a volunteer board of directors, the first
NAIDC was held in April 2002. For more information,
visit http://www.dairychallenge.org or contact Albert
De Vries (email@example.com) or Mary Sowerby
Congratulations to Don Bennink, North Florida
Holsteins, Bell, FL, for winning World Dairy Expo's 2010
Recognition Award as Dairyman of the Year. Each year,
World Dairy Expo recognizes four individuals for their
contributions to the global dairy industry. General
Manager Mark Clarke notes, "This year's honorees have
each invested a lifetime in building a successful business
within the dairy industry while helping others along the
way. We look forward to celebrating their achievements
at this year's show." The four recipients will be honored
during World Dairy Expo at a special "Dinner with the
Stars" banquet, held on Wednesday, September 29, in
the Exhibition Hall at the Alliant Energy Center in
Madison, Wisconsin. Tickets for the event are $30.
Reservations are required by Tuesday, September 21.
Upcoming Dairy Meetings
* A date for the next Dairy Production Conference
has not been set.
* Monthly Risk Management Workshops, Lafayette
County Extension Office, Mayo, FL, or by Polycom.
Contact Mary Sowerby at 386-362-2771 or
* 59th annual Florida Beef Cattle Short Course,
Gainesville, Florida, May 5 7, 2010. Program and
Dairy Update is published quarterly by the Department of Animal Sciences, University of Florida, as an educational and informational service. Please address any
cancellations or comments to Albert De Vries, Editor, Dairy Update, PO Box 110910, Gainesville, FL 32611-0910. Phone: (352) 392-5594 ext 227. E-mail:
firstname.lastname@example.org. Past issues are posted on the UF/IFAS Florida Dairy Extension website at http://dairy.ifas.ufl.edu. This issue was published on April 13, 2010.