PRESS BULLETIN No. 74.
Florida Agricultural Experiment Station.
THE DAIRY ROGUE.
BY JOHN M. SCOTT.
The cow is the foundation that upholds the whole dairy business.
Success depends more on the cow than on any other one point. Much
of course depends on the feed and care, but the best of feed and care
will not make a profitable cow out of an unprofitable one. That is,
feed and care alone will not make a cow that produces only 250 gal-
lons of milk yield 550 or 600 gallons in the same length of time. In
other words, all cows are not good dairy animals, no matter what or
how much they are fed. A great deal depends upon the individuality
of each animal. The feed consumed by some cows goes to laying on of
fat. As a general rule, a cow that is sleek and fat is a poor milker.
On the other hand the animal that uses the larger part of. the feed it
consumes for milk production, is the most profitable.
SELECTION 'OF DAIRY COW.
In selecting cows for the dairy, do not select so much for any parti-
cular breed, except that they should be from some of the dairy breeds,
and not from the beef breeds. It is not necessary that they should be
highly bred animals. As a general rule, however, the best bred cows are
the most profitable. Do not, however, by any means, keep a cow sim-
ply for her pedigree, but rather on her individual merits.
For a dairy we want cows that produce a large flow of milk of
good quality. How are we to secure such animals? By keeping a
daily record of the feed eaten and milk produced by each cow in the
herd. This is the only way to know exactly what each cow is doing;
that is, whether each cow is producing enough milk during the year to
pay for the feed eaten, and still leave us a fair profit. All that is need-
ed for keeping the record, in addition to what the farmer already
-has, is a spring balance. Suspend the spring balance from a beam in
December 5, 1907.
some convenient place in the barn, and tack a sheet of paper up con-
veniently near the spring balance. Have the sheet of paper ruled as
follows:-At the right have a column ruled for the dates. Across the top
have the names or numbers (that is, Cow No. 1, 2, 3, etc.) of all the
cows. To the left of the date, and below the name of each cow, record
the weight of milk after each milking.
The cow that does not pay for the feed eaten should be sent to the
block, and replaced by one that will return a profit. Suppose for in-
stance, we are milking two cows, one of which yields two gallons, and
the other one gallon of milk a day. In other words, the gross income
from one cow is sixty and from the other thirty cents per day. It costs
just the same to feed each cow. Do you suppose it would be haid
for us to decide which cow is the more profitable to keep? In this case,
one cow (at the present prices of milk and feed) would be fed at a loss
of ten cents per day, while the other cow would give a fair profit. Such
things can never be found out unless we keep a record of the amount of
milk produced. Then at the end of the month, or year, we can balance
up each cow's account. With this information at our command, we are
in a position to weed out the dairy rogue, or, in other words, the un-
IT PAYS TO KEEP A RECORD.
To obtain competent help in the dairy is a difficult matter, and we
may say we have not time to keep a record. How can we tell whether
dairying is a profitable business unless we keep an account of each cow?
The writer knew a man who was milking ten cows, but kept no records.
Finally he was persuaded to keep a daily record of each cow. At the
end of the year he was surprised to find that he had fed and milked three
cows that did not pay for the feed given them. In addition to this, he
was out of pocket by the labor necessary to take care of these three cows,
as well as the use of the money invested in them. In other words, had
he milked only the seven best cows instead of the ten during the year,
he not only would have had a greater margin of profit, but he would
have had less work to do. The time necessary for keeping the record
is only a few minutes each day-about two or three minutes for each
cow. This only amounts to a few cents a day for a herd of ten or twenty
State papers please c.opy.