April marks the 6 month anniversary of Davidsons taking the TMS programme (Transitional management system) in house. Over this time Fraser our newest member of the Dairy Tech team, has been busy out on farm using this tool to evaluate how cows transition. This system views the dry cow period and how they come into the milking herd, 30 days pre-calving to 30 days post-calving. The assessments are monthly to ensure that an accurate representation of the transition period is recorded.

During these assessments the body condition, rumen fill, lameness and hock hygiene of all dry and fresh cows are scored and any cases of metabolic disorders associated with the transition period, such as LDA’s (Left Displaced Abomasum), milk fevers and RFM’s (retained fetal membranes) are noted and taken into account for the overall score.

Once the data is uploaded onto the TMS system along with the farm’s milk recording data, a monthly score is produced. The breakdown of where points have been gained or lost may be seen by the farmer and nutritionist. In addition to showing the points, this also assigns a cost to each aspect. The cost of poor transition and metabolic issues cost the average TMS recorded farms 3.958p/l however with the support of TMS and our dedicated Dairy tech team we have found that the average cost for a Davidsons customer is 80% lower at 0.802p/l, with our farmers being above the UK average for body condition and rumen fill across both fresh and dry cows.

The data gained over the last 6 months has enabled the Dairy Tech team to further understand and support our farmers through this period with the recommendations such as diet or cow comfort being data driven to help drive performance.