The use of 3-dimensional imaging of Holstein cows to estimate body weight and monitor the composition of body weight change throughout lactation - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Journal of Dairy Science Year : 2022

The use of 3-dimensional imaging of Holstein cows to estimate body weight and monitor the composition of body weight change throughout lactation

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Abstract

Three-dimensional (3D) imaging offers new possibilities in animal phenotyping. Here, we investigated how this technology can be used to study the morphological changes that occur in dairy cows over the course of a single lactation. First, we estimated the individual body weight (BW) of dairy cows using traits measured with 3D images. To improve the quality of prediction, we monitored body growth (via 3D imaging), gut fill (via individual dry matter intake), and body reserves (via body condition score) throughout lactation. A group of 16 Holstein cows—8 in their first lactation, 4 in their second lactation, and 4 in their third or higher lactation—was scanned in 3D once a month for an entire lactation. Values of morphological traits (e.g., chest depth or hip width) increased continuously with parity, but cows in their first lactation experienced the largest increase during the monitoring period. Values of partial volume, estimated from point of shoulder to pin bone, predicted BW with an error of 25.4 kg (R2 = 0.92), which was reduced to 14.3 kg when the individual effect of cows was added to the estimation model. The model was further improved by the addition of partial surface area (from point of shoulder to pin bone), hip width, chest depth, diagonal length, and heart girth, which increased the R2 of BW prediction to 0.94 and decreased root mean square error to 22.1 kg. The different slopes for individual cows were partly explained by body condition score and morphological traits, indicating that they may have reflected differences in body density among animals. Changes in BW over the course of lactation were mostly due to changes in growth, which accounted for around two-thirds of BW gain regardless of parity. Body reserves and gut fill had smaller but still notable effects on body composition, with a higher gain in body reserves and gut fill for cows in their first lactation compared with multiparous cows. This work demonstrated the potential for rapid and low-cost 3D imaging to facilitate the monitoring of several traits of high interest in dairy livestock farming.
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Dates and versions

hal-03749447 , version 1 (11-08-2022)

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Attribution - CC BY 4.0

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Caroline Xavier, Yannick Le Cozler, L. Depuille, A. Caillot, C. Allain, et al.. The use of 3-dimensional imaging of Holstein cows to estimate body weight and monitor the composition of body weight change throughout lactation. Journal of Dairy Science, 2022, 105 (5), pp.4508-4519. ⟨10.3168/jds.2021-21337⟩. ⟨hal-03749447⟩
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