Reproductive performance of dairy cows fed two concentrations of phosphorus

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The objective of this study was to determine the effect of dietary P concentrations of 0.37 (recommended) or 0.57% (excess; dry matter basis) on reproductive performance. At calving, Holstein cows were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 dietary treatments (n = 134 for 0.37% P and n = 133 for 0.57% P). Cows were fitted with a radiotelemetric transmitter (50 d in milk [DIM]) to record mounting activity during estrus and bred to natural estrus from 50 to 100 DIM, then to synchronized estrus (Ovsynch protocol) after 100 DIM. Weekly ultrasonography was performed from 50 DIM until pregnancy was diagnosed (∼30 d after artificial insemination). Pregnancy was confirmed approximately 60 d after artificial insemination (artificial insemination). Weekly blood samples were analyzed for progesterone concentrations. Days to first increase (>1 ng/ml) in progesterone, days to first estrus detected by radiotelemetry, days to first service detected by herd personnel, and conception rate at first service did not differ between the recommended and excess P groups, respectively. Similarly, conception rate at 30 d, days open, pregnancies lost from 30 to 60 d, multiple ovulation rate, and the incidence of anovulatory condition at 71 DIM did not differ between these groups. The mean duration of estrus was 8.7 ± 0.5 and 8.7 ± 0.7 h, and the average number of mounts per estrus was 7.4 ± 0.5 and 7.8 ± 0.5 for a total mounting time during estrus of 25.8 ± 1.8 and 24.5 ± 1.6 s for cows fed the recommended and excess P diet, respectively. Phosphorus treatment had no detectable effect on reproductive performance. © American Dairy Science Association, 2004.

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Journal of Dairy Science

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