Interactions of Climatic Factors Affecting Milk Yield and Composition

A. K. Sharma, L. A. Rodriguez, C. J. Wilcox, R. J. Collier, K. C. Bachman, F. G. Martin

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    29 Scopus citations


    Objectives were to evaluate effects of interactions of maximum temperature, minimum relative humidity, and solar radiation on milk yield and constituent traits. Effects of climate variables and their interactions were significant but small in most cases. Second order regression models were developed for several variables. Six were examined in detail: Holstein and Jersey milk yields, Holstein fat and Feulgen-DNA reflectance percent, and Jersey protein percent and yield. Maximum temperature had greatest influence on each response, followed by minimum relative humidity and solar radiation. Optimum conditions for milk production were at maximum temperatures below 19.4°C, increasing solar radiation, and minimum relative humidity between 33.4 and 78.2% (cool sunny days, moderate humidity). Maximum Holstein fat percent of 3.5% was predicted for maximum temperatures below 30.8°C, minimum relative humidity below 89%, and solar radiation below 109 Langleys; actual mean Holstein fat percent was 3.35%. Optimum climatic conditions for Jersey protein percent were at maximum temperature of 10.6°C with solar radiation at 300 Langleys and relative humidity at 16% (cool sunny days, low humidity). Because noteworthy interactions existed between climate effects, response surface methodology was suitable for determining optimum climatic conditions for milk production.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)819-825
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of dairy science
    Issue number3
    StatePublished - 1988

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Food Science
    • Animal Science and Zoology
    • Genetics


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