The Effect of Different Milk Replacers on Calf Growth Performances, Blood Parameters, and Farm Economy

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Göncü Karakök S., Yeşil M. İ., Görgülü M.

Journal of Dairy, Veterinary & Animal Research, vol.12, no.2, pp.86-90, 2023 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 12 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Journal Name: Journal of Dairy, Veterinary & Animal Research
  • Journal Indexes: Other Indexes
  • Page Numbers: pp.86-90
  • Çukurova University Affiliated: Yes


This study was aimed to compare two different milk replacers (MR 22-18 (protein-fat), and MR 21-17 (Protein fat, LACALF)) instead of whole milk on calf growth performance, blood parameters, and economy. 42 Holstein calves born between November 2021 and May 2022 on an intensive dairy farm in the Mediterranean area were employed for this purpose. The calves were distributed in the control (whole milk), milk replacer 22-18, and milk replacer 21-17 groups, with the mean of gender and birth weights being similar for each group. The calves were kept together with their mothers for the first 3 days after birth to ensure that they received sufficient colostrum under similar farm conditions. Beginning from the second week, the calves were given free alfalfa hay and calf starter feed. After the calves consumed the liquid feed, their buckets were kept filled with water throughout the day and they were provided with free clean water. Body weight, feed consumption, body measurements, and blood samples were taken from each group of calves twice at the beginning and end of the trial. The results showed that MR 21-17 resulted similar in calf performance with whole milk, but MR 22-18 had lower growth performance compared to milk and MR 21-17 as MR 22-18 was contained higher fat and protein than MR 21-17. MR 21-17 has also lower feeding cost compared to whole milk and MR 22-18. The performance results revealed that milk replacer ingredient quality is main issues for effective calf growth