Behavior of Lacaune sheep in a milking parlour

Ivelina Nedeva1, Todor Slavov1, Ivan Varlyakov1, Veselin Radev1, Dimitar Panayotov2, Krum Nedelkov3
1 Trakia University, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Morphology, Physiology and Nutrition of Animals, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
2 Trakia University, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Animal husbandry – Ruminants and Dairy farming, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
3 Trakia University, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Animal Husbandry, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria 


Nedeva, I., Slavov, T., Varlyakov, I., Radev, V., Panayotov D. & Nedelkov, K. (2019). Behavior of Lacaune sheep in a milking parlour. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 25 (Suppl. 3), 74–80

The aim of the study was to evaluate the effect of intensive farming of dairy ewes on their behavior during the milking process. The study was focused on the entry order and preference for a specific milking side, either left or right, of the milking installation. The data from 215 Lacaune ewes over a whole lactational period (240 days) were analyzed. Groups were formed according the following parameters: productivity (high- or low- producing); order/sequence of entry for milking (first group – FG and last group – LG); with preference (SP) or without preference (NoSP) for the side of the milking installation. Our results showed that most of the animals developed a preference for the entry order (FG, Index of Entries in the Milking Installation /IEMI/ = 668.62; LG, IEMI = 129.31) and the side of the milking station (SP, Index of Side preference in the Milking Installation /ISMI/ = 69.38%; NoSP, ISMI = 31.85%), but not to the milking place, which favors the process of machine milking in the milking parlour.

Keywords: sheep; milking order; milking; milk flow; milking parlour

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