The Contrasting Functions of Nutrition on Reproduction in Dairy Cows


With Milo Wiltbank, Professor of Animal and Dairy Sciences and Endocrinology–Reproductive Physiology, University of Wisconsin, USA

For the session's questions and answers, click here.

Nutrition can alter reproduction in lactating dairy cows, and the varied ways in which this occurs are discussed. Six different well-studied pathways are presented that can improve fertility and reduce pregnancy loss in dairy herds with examples provided. Attaining a high fertility cycle is emphasized.


• How deficiencies in vitamin E near the end of pregnancy can alter reproduction in the subsequent lactation.

• How high milk production can alter reproductive traits (double ovulation, twinning, expression of heats, pregnancies per AI) and how programs like Double Ovsynch can overcome these effects.

• How high body condition score loss during the early postpartum period can reduce pregnancies per AI and how herds attain the high fertility cycle.

• The interaction of feeding rumen-protected methionine with health disorders on time to pregnancy.

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