Author(s): Yoshida C, Nakao T
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Abstract Shortened and weakened oestrous signs in dairy cows may cause a failure of oestrus detection and artificial insemination timing error leading to poor reproductive performance. The aims of this study were to investigate the duration of standing oestrus in high-producing dairy cows under a free stall system, to determine the duration of expression of secondary oestrous signs before and after standing oestrus (Expt 1) and to compare the duration and intensity of oestrus between cows and heifers (Expt 2). Cattle were checked for primary and secondary oestrous signs at an interval of 4 h. Heat detection aids were also used. In Expt 1, of 56 cows which were detected in oestrus, 36 cows (64.3\%) showed standing oestrus and other 20 cows (36.6\%) showed secondary oestrous signs only. Duration of the standing oestrus was 6.6 +/- 6.3 h on average (+/-SD), ranging between 2 and 32 h. The cows in standing oestrus showed secondary oestrous signs during a period from 9.6 +/- 8.1 h before onset of standing to 18.4 +/- 18.8 h after the end of standing oestrus. In the cows that did not show standing oestrus, expression of secondary oestrous signs were observed for 25.7 +/- 20.5 h, which was 7.5 h shorter than the average duration of oestrus in cows showing standing oestrus. In Expt 2, nine (82\%) of the 11 lactating cows in oestrus showed standing, while all the 10 heifers exhibited standing oestrus. Average duration of standing oestrus was 6.4 +/- 4.3 h in cows and 6.2 +/- 3.9 h in heifers, respectively. It may be concluded that the duration of standing oestrus is substantially shortened in lactating dairy cows, and more than one-third of cows did not show standing oestrus. In cows showing standing oestrus, duration of expression of secondary oestrous signs before and after standing is not shortened. Duration of standing oestrus in heifers was as short as that in cows.
This article was published in Reprod Domest Anim
and referenced in Advances in Dairy Research