Transitioning from conventional to automatic milking: Effects on the human-animal relationship
AM Wildridge, PC Thomson, SC Garcia, EC Jongman, KL Kerrisk
Journal of Dairy Science | ELSEVIER SCIENCE INC | Published : 2020
There are several differences in how an automatic milking system (AMS; milking equipment not requiring human intervention for the milk harvesting process) and a conventional milking system (CMS) are managed, where the effect of milking system type on the human-animal relationship has remained unexplored. A survey and observations from 5 Australian dairy farms transitioning from CMS to AMS were taken twice, 1 yr apart, before and after transition to an AMS. The farmers completed a survey and had all farmer-cow interactions documented for 3 d. In addition, a random selection of lactating cows had their avoidance distance (the distance at which they move away from an approaching person) recorde..View full abstract
This work was funded by the FutureDairy project, a national industry driven project funded in this phase by Dairy Australia, The University of Sydney, and DeLaval. The authors thank the 5 farmers who hosted the study on their farm and provided support throughout the trial period.