eCite Digital Repository

Milking robot utilization, a successful precision livestock farming evolution


John, AJ and Clark, CEF and Freeman, MJ and Kerrisk, KL and Garcia, SC and Halachmi, I, Milking robot utilization, a successful precision livestock farming evolution, Animal, 10, (9) pp. 1484-1492. ISSN 1751-7311 (2016) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2016 The Animal Consortium

DOI: doi:10.1017/S1751731116000495


Automatic milking systems (AMS), one of the earliest precision livestock farming developments, have revolutionized dairy farming around the world. While robots control the milking process, there have also been numerous changes to how the whole farm system is managed. Milking is no longer performed in defined sessions; rather, the cow can now choose when to be milked in AMS, allowing milking to be distributed throughout a 24 h period. Despite this ability, there has been little attention given to milking robot utilization across 24 h. In order to formulate relevant research questions and improve farm AMS management there is a need to determine the current knowledge gaps regarding the distribution of robot utilization. Feed, animal and management factors and their interplay on levels of milking robot utilization across 24 h for both indoor and pasture-based systems are here reviewed. The impact of the timing, type and quantity of feed offered and their interaction with the distance of feed from the parlour; herd social dynamics, climate and various other management factors on robot utilization through 24 h are provided. This novel review draws together both the opportunities and challenges that exist for farm management to use these factors to improved system efficiency and those that exist for further research.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:automatic milking system, feeding behaviour, robot idle time, grazing, PLF, precision livestock farming
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Animal production
Research Field:Animal management
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Livestock raising
Objective Field:Dairy cattle
UTAS Author:Freeman, MJ (Mr Mark Freeman)
ID Code:111522
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:46
Deposited By:Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture
Deposited On:2016-09-20
Last Modified:2019-06-11

Repository Staff Only: item control page