Skip to main content
Conference abstract - Peer-reviewed, 2014

The effect of pulstation ratios on teat and udder health and productivity in dairy cows in AMS

Ferneborg, Sabine; Svennersten Sjaunja, Kerstin


The effect of pulsation ratios on teat and udder health and productivity in dairy cows in AMS Ferneborg, Sabine and Svennersten Sjaunja, Kerstin. Kungsängens Research Centre, Sw. Univ. Agric. Sci., SE-753 23 Uppsala, Sweden The pulsation ratio of a milking machine affects not only milk flow and milking time, but has also been reported to cause oedema in the teats and increased somatic cell count. However, most of the studies comparing pulsation ratios have been performed on traditional cluster milking, and the effects are likely to be caused by over milking. A large part of the milking today is performed on quarter level using automatic milking systems (AMS), where the risk of over milking is reduced. The aim of this project was to investigate the effects of different pulsation ratios on teat and udder health, productivity and milking parameters in AMS, where each quarter is individually milked. 356 cows on 5 privately owned farms were included in the study, which was performed in a split-udder design where three pulsation ratios; 60:40, 70:30 and 75:25 were compared to the standard pulsation 65:35. Teat score and teat thickness were measured on three occasions during the trial. Milk samples were taken from strip milk for the analysis of milk SCC. Milk yield, milking time and milk flow were registered automatically by the AMS for each milking. All statistical analysis was performed on the differences between control and treated fore- and hind quarter respectively. Data was analyzed using procedures MIXED and GLIMMIX in SAS 9.3. The MIXED model included the fixed effects of treatment and week, as well as treatment by week interaction and the random effect of cow. We found that the pulsation ratios 70:30 and 75:25 increased peak and average flow, and that machine-on-time was shorter on 75:25, while both peak and average flow were lower and machine-on-time shorter on 60:40. We found no support for negative effects on teat or udder health from any of the pulsation ratios applied, and do therefore conclude that increased pulsation ratios can be used to increase productivity in automatic milking systems where quarter milking is applied.


automatic milking, pulsation ratios, dairy cows,

Published in

Book title: Book of Abstracts of the 65th Annual Meeting of the European Association for Animal Production
ISBN: 978-90-8686-248-1
Publisher: Wageningen Academic Publishers


Annual Meeting of the European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP)