Effect of shade and water sprinkling on physiological responses and milk yields of Holstein cows in a semi-arid region

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Domingos, H. G T
Maia, A. S C [UNESP]
Souza, J.B.F
Silva, R. B.
Vieira, F. M C
Silva, R. G.

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The effects of shading and water sprinkling on physiological responses and milk production were studied in Holstein cows managed in an equatorial semi-arid region. Five cows were observed for 36 days during May and June 2009. We studied the effects of sun, shade, shade plus single sprinkling, shade plus sprinkling every 2. h and shade plus sprinkling every hour on physiological responses, i.e., rectal temperature, coat surface temperature and respiratory rate, and on milk production. Environmental variables, i.e., air temperature, black globe temperature, mean radiant temperature, relative humidity and wind speed, were recorded every 30. min throughout the observation period. The statistical analysis utilized a 5×5 replicated latin square, and the results showed reduced values in physiological variables in cows that were protected from short wave radiation and that received water sprinkling; milk yield increased by approximately 3.5. kg in such animals relative to those not receiving such treatment. However, the milk yield for the morning milking presented similar mean values regardless of whether the animals received shading and sprinkling benefits, which indicates that frequency of sprinkling and amount of time (permanence) in the shade were critical for the effect on milk yield. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.



Evaporative cooling, Heat stress, Milk yield, Shade, Sprinkler systems, Animalia

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Livestock Science, v. 154, n. 1-3, p. 169-174, 2013.