For productivity enhancement, Calf Nutrition during all stages of growth is very critical, which has not got due attention in the recent past. Even if adult animal are well fed, they are not able to produce milk up to their full potential, since these animals were not fed properly during there calf-hood. As a result, effects milk production and reproductive capacity of the animal.
In this respect, quality milk producing breeds are being given special attention, since taking proper care in terms of health and feed enhances not only the overall volume of milk produced per day, but also, the total number of lactating days in the year. Hence, Murrah Buffalo, which is abundantly found in Punjab and has a repute of quality milk across the nation, is being given special emphasis as any sort of dairy based assistance not only improves the milk yield, but also changes the socio-economic dynamics for a farmer.
Milkfed, in its efforts serve the farmers from multidimensional aspects is aware that health of the calf paves a long path for a healthy life cycle of the adult animal. Hence, Milkfed Punjab has put in dedicated efforts to implement a Pilot Project Calf Rearing Programme for Murrah Buffaloes, with an objective to increase the productivity and lactation cycle throughout the life span of the animal
Initially, the pilot programme has been kick started in four Verka Dairies namely Ropar, Ludhiana, Jalandhar & Patiala with a objective to encourage the farmers to provide essential nutrients during advance stage of pregnancy to ensure that the calf born is healthy. The female calves are taken special care by feeding them on Calf Starter & Calf Growth meal for achieving early maturity weight subsequently reducing age at first calving. This in turn is also effective to reduce the mortality rate among female calves.
This project will comprise of 80 villages covering 10,000 female calves under one Verka Dairy. Field Supervisors are allotted for recording information in user friendly Software (INAPH) on pregnant animals, calves born, monthly body weight etc. Awareness campaigns would be organized and information would be provided on the pregnancy feed, calf starter, calf growth meal which is formulated on the scientific lines. Identified pregnant animals in there last trimester would be with 3 kg of pregnancy feed daily up to parturition which would be provided to farmer on 50% subsidy. Born female calves would be fed Calf Starter and Growth meal daily up to 106 weeks of age. Body Weight would be recorded on monthly basis and age at first calving would be registered.
Expected Benefits of the Programme:
- Average age of first calving in Murrah Buffalo is 48 months which would be expected to reduced by 6 months.
- Calf Mortality would be reduced by 10%
- Av. Lactation length is 270 days which is expected to Increase up to 300 days.
- Calving interval is 18 months, which is expected to reduce by 2 months.