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Effect of Improved Feeding and Housing, Friesian Blood Level and Parity on Milk Production of Ankole x Friesian Crossbred Cows
DK Kibwana1, 2, AM Makumyaviri2 and JL Hornick1*
1University of Liege, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Tropical Veterinary Institute, Boulevard of Colonster, 20, B43, 4000 Liege, Belgium; 2Catholic University of Graben, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, 29 Butembo, D.R. Congo; *Corresponding author:


In North Kivu, D.R. Congo, cattle are raised in extensive systems based on local breeds and crossbreds. This farming method affects the performance of dairy animals and mortgages the level of milk consumption in population. An improved farming system, including feed supplementation, Friesian cross-breeding and the sheltering of animals in stalls at night, was studied to evaluate its effect on milk production by Ankole x Friesian crossbreds. The study was performed in Beni, D.R. Congo, on two groups of 15 animals (control group-CoG and improved group-IG), homogeneous according to Friesian blood and parity levels. The improved system, Friesian blood and parity levels increased significantly milk production (P<0.001). Farming system increased milk production by 1.6 l/d (5.2 l/d vs 6.8 l/d respectively in CoG and IG). Milk production ranged from 5.3±0.04 l/d to 6.6±0.02 l/d and from 4.9±0.02 l/d to 7.2±0.02 l/d according, respectively, to Friesian blood level and parity. A significant interaction was observed between farming system and Friesian blood level, and between farming system and parity (P<0.001). The two groups were characterized by a fair adaptation to forage availability associated to climatic factors. The study showed the importance of genetic and environmental factors on the milk production of crossbred dairy cows of the region.

Key words: Ankole x Friesian, Cattle, Housing, Milk production, Parity, Supplementation


ISSN 0253-8318 (Print)
ISSN 2074-7764 (Online)