Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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    The potential of using sensor data to predict the moment of calving for dairy cows
    Rutten, C.J. ; Steeneveld, W. ; Kamphuis, C. ; Huijps, K. ; Hogeveen, H. - \ 2015
    In: Precision Livestock Farming Applications / Halachmi, Ilan, Wageningen : Wageningen Academic Publishers - ISBN 9789086862689 - p. 161 - 167.
    On dairy farms, management of calving is important for the health of dairy cows and the survival rate of calves born. Although an expected calving date is known, farmers need to check their cows regularly to estimate the moment when a cow will start calving. A sensor system which predicts the moment of calving could help farmers to check cows effectively for the occurrence of dystocia. In this study, a total of 450 cows on two farms were equipped with Agis SensOor sensors (Agis Automatisering B.V., Harmelen, the Netherlands), which measure rumination activity, activity and temperature hourly. Data were collected over a one-year period. During that period, the exact moment of 417 calvings was recorded using camera images of the calving pen taken every 5 minutes. In total 110 calvings could be linked with sensor data. The moment when calving started was defined as the hour in which the camera images showed the cow having contractions or labour initially started. Two logit models were developed: a reduced model with the expected calving date as the independent variable and a full model which additionally included independent variables based on sensor data. The areas under the Receiver Operating Characteristic curves were 0.682 and 0.878 for the reduced and full model with, at a false positive rate of 10%, sensitivities of 22 and 69%, respectively. Results indicated that the inclusion of sensor data improved prediction of the start of calving and thus that the sensor data used have some potential for predicting the moment of calving.
    Evaluating progesterone profiles to improve automated oestrus detection
    Kamphuis, C. ; Huijps, K. ; Hogeveen, H. - \ 2015
    In: Precision Livestock Farming Applications / Halachmi, Ilan, Wageningen Academic Publishers - ISBN 9789086862689 - p. 279 - 285.
    Adoption of automated heat detection technologies is increasingly popular in the dairy industry. Generally speaking, farmers invest in only one technology on the assumption that this system will find most, if not all, cows in heat. It is, however, known that these technologies do not find all cows in heat. It has been suggested that automated heat detection may improve when sensor data are combined, where this involves combining different sensor measurements, e.g. linking activity with rumination data. So far, the option of combining different technologies has not been studied for the obvious reason that no commercial farms are using technologies from several suppliers. The Smart Dairy Farming (SDF) project, a Dutch initiative, brings together technology providers, knowledge institutions and dairy farms to improve the longevity of dairy cows by developing innovative tools to improve animal health, reproduction and feeding strategies. The SDF project offers a unique opportunity to research whether combining different sensing technologies improves automated heat detection. To do this, progesterone profiles were created by daily measurement of progesterone in milk from 31 cows, over a 24-day period, at two farms participating in the SDF project. One automated heat detection technology is used on both farms, and each farm has a second, different, technology running simultaneously. Heat alerts generated and farmers’ observations were compared with progesterone profiles. The data were used to provide insight into the following issues: do heat detection technologies provide alerts for cows in heat; when do they alert for heat events; how do farmers use the information from the heat detection technologies; and whether the exact timing of true heat may be improved by combining heat alerts. Finally, possible explanations will be studied for those heat events that remain undetected by both oestrus detection systems and farmers’ observations.
    Using successful inseminations to evaluate sensitivity of automated heat detection systems
    Kamphuis, C. ; Huijps, K. - \ 2015
    - p. 381 - 389.
    Automated oestrus detection systems are becoming a mainstream technology on dairy farms. A previous study demonstrated that these systems generate heat alerts too early or too late in comparison to progesterone-defined oestrus events. That study, however, included only 30 cases. The current study used successful inseminations as reference to evaluate sensitivity of heat detection systems. Data were collected on two farms from January through July 2014 and included insemination records and heat alerts from three different automated heat detection system. One system was implemented on both farms, and each farm had a second, different, heat detection system running simultaneously. Insemination records were used to identify successful inseminations (n = 282; 153 on Farm 1 and 129 on Farm 2). The day each system generated heat alerts was compared with the day of successful insemination to calculate the sensitivity for successful inseminations. Sensitivity was also assessed per parity (1, 2 or ≥3) and per lactation stage (≤56 and >56 days in milk) within each system. Using a two-day time window (day of successful insemination and previous day) for a system to generate an alert, sensitivities were 35%, 87%, and 94% for system A, B, and C, respectively. Systems had lower sensitivity levels for heifers (parity 1) and system B appeared to have higher sensitivity levels for successful inseminations during the first 56 days of lactation. Despite small differences in sensitivity levels for the different parity groups and lactation stages, there appeared to be no differences of practical relevance. Results suggested no necessity for parity specific or lactation stage specific algorithms to improve detection performance of heat detection systems.
    Development of a predictive model for the onset of calving
    Rutten, C.J. ; Steeneveld, W. ; Huijps, K. ; Hogeveen, H. - \ 2015
    - p. 397 - 405.
    Smart Dairy Farming in The Netherlands: case heat detection
    Huijps, K. ; Kamphuis, C. ; Hogewerf, P.H. - \ 2014
    Progesterone profiles to evaluate simultaneous use of multiple oestrus detection technologies
    Kamphuis, C. ; Huijps, K. ; Hogeveen, H. - \ 2014
    In: Book of Abstracts of the 65th Annual Meeting of the European Federation of Animal Science. - - p. 158 - 158.
    Improving bovine udder health: A national mastitis control program in the Netherlands
    Lam, T.J.G.M. ; Borne, B.H.P. van den; Jansen, J. ; Huijps, K. ; Veersen, J.C.L. ; Schaick, G. van; Hogeveen, H. - \ 2013
    Journal of Dairy Science 96 (2013)2. - ISSN 0022-0302 - p. 1301 - 1311.
    management-practices - dairy herds - milk quality - attitudes - communication - performance - farmers - associations - knowledge - england
    Because of increasing bulk milk somatic cell counts and continuous clinical mastitis problems in a substantial number of herds, a national mastitis control program was started in 2005 to improve udder health in the Netherlands. The program started with founding the Dutch Udder Health Centre (UGCN), which had the task to coordinate the program. The program consisted of 2 parts: a research part and a knowledge-transfer part, which were integrated as much as possible. The knowledge-transfer part comprised 2 communication strategies: a central and a peripheral approach. The central approach was based on educating farmers using comprehensive science-based and rational argumentation about mastitis prevention and included on-farm study group meetings. Comprehensive education materials were developed for farmers that were internally motivated to improve udder health. In the peripheral approach it was tried to motivate farmers to implement certain management measures using nontechnical arguments. Mass media campaigns were used that focused on one single aspect of mastitis prevention. These communication strategies, as well as an integrated approach between various stakeholders and different scientific disciplines were used to reach as many farmers as possible. It should be noted that, because this intervention took place at a national level, no control group was available, as it would be impossible to isolate farmers from all forms of communication for 5 years. Based on several studies executed during and after the program, however, the results suggest that udder health seemed to have improved on a national level during the course of the program from 2005 to 2010. Within a cohort of dairy herds monitored during the program, the prevalence of subclinical mastitis did not change significantly (23.0 in 2004 vs. 22.2 in 2009). The incidence rate of clinical mastitis, however, decreased significantly, from 33.5 to 28.1 quarter cases per 100 cow years at risk. The most important elements of the farmers' mindset toward mastitis control also changed favorably. The simulated costs of mastitis per farm were reduced compared with a situation in which the mastitis would not have changed, with € 400 per year. When this amount is extrapolated to all Dutch farms, the sector as a whole reduced the total costs of mastitis by € 8 million per year. It is difficult to assign the improved udder health completely to the efforts of the program due to the lack of a control group. Nevertheless, investing € 8 million by the Dutch dairy industry in a 5-yr national mastitis control program likely improved udder health and seemed to pay for itself financially.
    Duurzame melkstapel goed voor milieu
    Haan, M.H.A. de; Huijps, K. ; Hoog, J. de - \ 2012
    Nieuwsbrief Koeien & Kansen 2012 (2012)36. - p. 2 - 2.
    melkveehouderij - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - duurzame veehouderij - milieueffect - diergezondheid - melkveestapel - dairy farming - sustainability - sustainable animal husbandry - environmental impact - animal health - dairy herds
    Koeien & Kansen-veehouders doen hun best om goede milieuprestaties te leveren. Het projectdoel is dan ook om voor te lopen op de milieuwetgeving. Met bovengemiddelde milieuprestaties lijkt dit aardig te lukken. Maar hoe zit het met de veeprestaties? Krijgt dat dan minder aandacht? Is dat juist onder gemiddeld? Nou, niet dus. Gemiddeld hebben de veestapels van de Koeien & Kansen-bedrijven zelfs een hoger Netto Dag Rendement (NDR) dan het gemiddelde van de Nederlandse bedrijven. Dit is te zien in de figuur. Het gemiddelde NDR en het NDR van de 5% laagst scorende veestapels van Koeien & Kansen ligt beduidend hoger dan die van Nederland.
    Duurzaamheid veestapels in project Koeien & Kansen
    Huijps, K. ; Hoog, J. de; Haan, M.H.A. de - \ 2012
    Lelystad : Wageningen UR Livestock Research (Rapport / Koeien & Kansen nr. 64)
    melkveehouderij - duurzaamheid testen - productieve levensduur - monitoren - agrarische bedrijfsvoering - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - dairy farming - endurance testing - productive life - monitors - farm management - sustainability
    Duurzaamheid wordt ook in de melkveehouderij steeds belangrijker. Duurzaamheid omvat veel verschillende aspecten die uiteindelijk bij elkaar komen en gewogen dienen te worden. Dit is zeker nog niet uitgekristalliseerd en diverse verkenningen zijn dan ook nodig. Daarnaast ligt er de vraag om duurzaamheid ook praktisch toepasbaar te maken als managementinstrument voor melkveehouders. Deze twee aspecten komen in dit rapport bij elkaar. Het doel van deze rapportage is dan ook inzicht te krijgen in de duurzaamheid van de veestapels van Koeien & Kansen-veehouders en de Duurzaamheidsmonitor van CRV toe te passen op een praktisch vraagstuk. In de Duurzaamheidsmonitor is een economisch kengetal opgenomen om een economische uitwerking van levensproductie, het Netto Dag Rendement (NDR), te laten zien.
    Economic aspects of mastitis: New developments
    Hogeveen, H. ; Huijps, K. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. - \ 2011
    New Zealand Veterinary Journal 59 (2011)1. - ISSN 0048-0169 - p. 16 - 23.
    somatic-cell count - pasteurized fluid milk - subclinical mastitis - partial budget - dairy-cattle - clinical mastitis - simulation-model - bovine mastitis - shelf-life - costs
    Good udder health is not only important for the dairy farmer but, because of increasing interest of consumers in the way dairy products are produced, also for the dairy production chain as a whole. An important role of veterinarians is in advising on production diseases such as mastitis. A large part of this advice is given around the planning of management to maintain or improve the udder health status of a farm. Mastitis is a costly disease, due to losses (a reduction of output due to mastitis) and expenditure (additional inputs to reduce the level of mastitis). Worldwide, published estimates of the economic losses of clinical mastitis range from €61 to €97 per cow on a farm, with large differences between farms, e.g. in The Netherlands, losses due to clinical and subclinical mastitis varied between €17 and €198 per cow per year. Moreover, farmers tended to underestimate these costs. This indicates that for a large proportion of farms there are many avoidable losses. In order to provide good support to farmers' decision-making, it is important to describe the mastitis setting not only in terms of disease, e.g. incidence of clinical mastitis, but also in monetary terms; and to make good decisions, it is necessary to provide the dairy farmer with information on the additional expenditure and reduced losses associated with alternative decisions. Six out of 18 preventive measures were shown to have a positive nett benefit, viz blanket use of dry-cow therapy, keeping cows standing after milking, back-flushing of the milk cluster after milking a cow with clinical mastitis, application of a treatment protocol, washing dirty udders, and the use of milkers' gloves. For those measures that included a large amount of routine labour or investment, the reduced losses did not outweigh the additional expenditure. The advisor cannot expect that measures that are cost-effective are always implemented. Reasons for this are the objectives of the dairy farmer can be other than maximisation of profit, resources to improve the mastitis situation compete with other fields of management, risk involved with the decision, economic behaviour of the dairy farmer, and valuation of the cost factors by the dairy farmer. For all decision-makers this means that, although financial incentives do have an effect on the management of mastitis, it is not always sufficient to show the economic benefits of improved management to induce an improvement of management of mastitis.
    Costs and efficacy of mastitis management measures
    Huijps, K. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. ; Hogeveen, H. - \ 2010
    In: Proceedings of the 5th IDF Mastitis Conference: Mastitis Research into Practice, Christchurch, New Zealand, 21-24 March 2010. - Wellington, New Zealand : VetLearn - ISBN 9780473165741 - p. 670 - 670.
    Motivating isn't just about the money
    Hogeveen, H. ; Huijps, K. ; Jansen, J. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. - \ 2010
    In: Proceedings of the NMC 49th Annual Meeting, Albuquerque, NM, USA, 31 Januari - 3 Februari 2010. - - p. 68 - 75.
    Costs and efficacy of management measures to improve udder health at Dutch dairy farms: the use of expertise
    Dohmen, W. ; Huijps, K. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. ; Hogeveen, H. - \ 2010
    In: Proceedings of the International Workshop Farm Animal Health Economics, Nantes, France, 14-15 January 2010. - Nantes : INRA - p. 56 - 60.
    Mastitis costs money: What's new?
    Hogeveen, H. ; Huijps, K. ; Halasa, T. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. - \ 2010
    In: Proceedings of the 5th IDF Mastitis Conference on Mastitis Research into Practice, Christchurch, New Zealand, 21-24 March 2010. - Wellington, New Zealand : VetLearn - ISBN 9780473165741 - p. 62 - 71.
    Sub-optimal economic behaviour with respect to mastitis management
    Huijps, K. ; Hogeveen, H. ; Antonides, G. ; Valeeva, N.I. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. ; Oude Lansink, A.G.J.M. - \ 2010
    European Review of Agricultural Economics 37 (2010)4. - ISSN 0165-1587 - p. 553 - 568.
    milk quality - aversion - farmers - choice - risk
    This study analyses sub-optimal economic behaviour in decision-making of Dutch dairy farmers regarding measures to improve udder health. A low adoption rate and a low level of compliance with advice given to the dairy industry suggest the presence of inertia. Farmers who already had implemented a specific management measure were more likely to continue doing this than farmers who applied a different management regime, regardless of the availability of more effective or lower cost alternatives. Additionally, the results showed that farmers were more sensitive to penalties rather than bonuses aimed at stimulating desired behaviour
    Economic behavior of dairy farmers regarding mastitis management
    Huijps, K. ; Hogeveen, H. ; Antonides, G. ; Valeeva, N.I. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. ; Oude Lansink, A.G.J.M. - \ 2010
    In: Proceedings of the 5th IDF Mastitis Conference, Christchurch, New Zealand, 21 - 24 March, 2010. - Wellington, New Zealand : VetLearn - ISBN 9780473165741 - p. 212 - 217.
    Costs and efficacy of management measures to improve udder health on Dutch dairy farms
    Huijps, K. ; Hogeveen, H. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. ; Oude Lansink, A.G.J.M. - \ 2010
    Journal of Dairy Science 93 (2010)1. - ISSN 0022-0302 - p. 115 - 124.
    clinical mastitis - risk-factors - herds
    Many different management measures are available to control mastitis, a very costly disease in the dairy sector. The objective of this paper was to evaluate the costs and efficacies of 18 of these management measures, for contagious and environmental pathogens, and their effect on bulk tank somatic cell count (BTSCC) and incidence of clinical mastitis (CM). To determine the efficacies for these management measures, literature data and expertise were combined using Monte Carlo expert evaluation analysis. The effect of management measures varied with the incidence of CM and BTSCC, as well as for environmental and contagious problems. On average, postmilking teat disinfection was found to be the most effective measure in all situations. All management measures had large uncertainty around the most likely value. Results of a data envelopment analysis showed that 4 of the management measures included formed the best-practice frontier (the most cost-efficient measures): keeping cows standing after milking, rinsing clusters after milking a clinical case, using a separate cloth for all cows, and wearing milkers’ gloves. Of the top 25 management measures (the 18 base management measures including levels of compliance), 8 were measures with 100% compliance; the others were sublevels of these measures with compliance varying between 25 and 100%. A lower hourly rate of the farmer did not influence management measures from the best-practice frontier, but had some effect on the efficiency scores of the other management measures
    Economic behaviour of farmers
    Huijps, K. ; Antonides, G. ; Hogeveen, H. - \ 2009
    In: Proceedings of the 48th Annual Meeting of the NMC. - - p. 198 - 199.
    Preferences of cost factors for mastitis management among Dutch dairy farmers using adaptive conjoint analysis
    Huijps, K. ; Hogeveen, H. ; Lam, T.J.G.M. ; Huirne, R.B.M. - \ 2009
    Preventive Veterinary Medicine 92 (2009)4. - ISSN 0167-5877 - p. 351 - 359.
    Although many control practices to improve the mastitis situation on a farm and to reduce the economic losses of mastitis are available, the adoption rate and level of compliance of these measures are generally low. Implementing new measures involves costs, which can be divided into costs for the milking parlour and other issues. These costs were subdivided into long term investments, short term investments, labour, and change of routines. In traditional cost-benefit analyses all costs belonging to the different factors are set on a comparable monetary value. Although in an economic way this is correct, farmers may value some costs in a different way because of certain preferences, influencing the adoption rate of the mastitis reducing measures. The objectives of this study were to explore differences between preferences of cost factors according to Dutch dairy farmers, and to distinguish different groups of farmers accordingly. 136 farmers were questioned by adaptive conjoint analysis about their individual preferences. A large difference between these preferences was found. Taking individual preferences together, overall, long term investments in issues other than milking parlour were preferred most and changing routines in issues other than milking parlour were preferred least. The results of this study show that, given the large variation in the valuations, to improve the adoption rate of management measures it is important to take the preference of cost factors into account in advice given
    Economic decisions in mastitis management
    Huijps, K. - \ 2009
    Utrecht University. Promotor(en): J.A. Stegeman; Alfons Oude Lansink, co-promotor(en): Henk Hogeveen; T.J.G.M. Lam. - S.l. : s.n. - ISBN 9789039352076 - 155
    This thesis was conducted with the main objectives (i) to calculate costs of mastitis and cost-efficiency of mastitis management measures and (ii) to acquire insights in the economic decision behaviour of dairy farmers with respect to mastitis management. Animal health economics is a decision supporting science, based on a decision making function of evaluating and choosing between alternative strategies on animal diseases. The potential economic importance of diseases such as mastitis is not uniform across farms, regions or countries, and control measures justified in one context may not be economically worthwhile in another. The average costs of mastitis were calculated as €77 per year per cow present on the farm under quota situation. Most of the farmers (72%) underestimated the costs of mastitis on their farm. The main reason for this underestimation was that farmers underestimated production losses caused by cows with an elevated somatic cell count. The costs of mastitis as calculated by the farmers varied between €17 and €200 per cow per year on farm level. It was found that farms that have a comparable incidence of clinical mastitis and bulk tank somatic cell count may have different costs of mastitis. Because decisions are often based on the perception of a problem, farm specific cost calculations can help to give a better insight in the magnitude of the decision. This can improve the adoption rate of advised management measures. Decisions are not only based on economic parameters or other quantified characteristics. Mastitis management is known as one of the fields where farmer decision making often deviates from recommendations based on rational standard-economic models and is often contrary to advices given by veterinarians and other advisors. Farmers can have different motivations to decide on the implementation of management measures to improve the udder health situation on the farm. It is necessary to understand the important motivators of dairy farmers to be able to successfully transfer knowledge and technology to the dairy farm. The tools developed in this thesis can provide support in economic decisions, which can improve the motivation of a farmer to improve mastitis management. In general, farmers prefer to invest in short or long term investments, rather than to invest in extra labour or in changing routines. The large variation in preferences between farmers showed the importance of including this information in farm specific decision support. Not every farmer can earn money by improving the udder health situation by adopting new management measures, but many can. Clear differences between the costs and benefits of management measures exist for different farm situations. The results of this thesis have contributed to our understanding of the decision making process of dairy farmers regarding mastitis management.
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