Sharn Roskam, a local dairy farmer in Southland caught up with her KeyVet Femke to discuss the benefits of using Calpro Bolus over the calving period.
How do Calpro Boluses fit into your transition plan over calving?
"We use the bolus post calving in 3rd calvers and older as the general rule. This complements our mineral strategy and transition plan for our springers."
Describe your timing (around calving) of application?
"Last year we did each cow as they came into the shed for their first milking. We bring fresh cows in for their first milking twice a day. Those that calved overnight get a bolus in the morning, those that calve through the day get their bolus at the afternoon milking. We only milk colostrum cows once a day. This year we are building a wee race next to the calving pad so that we can give any cows that calve after the afternoon collection a bolus but leave them on the pad with their calf until we collect them the next morning. This will cut the time from calving to administering but more than 12hrs. We are also going to use an additional module on our Cow Manager ear tag system to identify cows ruminating and eating times for intervention with a bolus too."
Do you use the boluses in each cow or just in at risk cows?
"As above all 3rd calvers and above get a Calpro Bolus no matter what, and this year we will trial utilising cow manager data on rumination to target any other cows that have a sudden drop in rumination."
Can you describe the benefits you've observed from using Calpro Boluses versus how you used to deal with at-risk cows post-calving?
"While we have changed a number of things leading up to calving (to help post calving), Calpro Boluses being one of them, we've found them to be incredibly easy to administer. Our cows treated for metabolics (bags) has reduced by well over half, saving us lots of time and money. Again we have changed a lot in our system but the overall health of our cows post calving has improved."
Are the boluses easy to apply?
"Super easy. We had a young staff member new to the industry that had never dealt with cows before happy to give them to the cows."
If you are looking to include Calpro Boluses over calving pop into the clinic or call your KeyVet. You can also read more information on the Calpro Bolus information site, and Keep on Top of the Drop.