Journal article

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

Abstract

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..

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University of Melbourne Researchers

Grants

Funding Acknowledgements

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.