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Wisconsin Dairymen's Association / Fortieth annual report of the Wisconsin Dairymen's Association : held at Beloit, Wis., November, 1911. Report of the proceedings, annual address of the president, and interesting essays and discussions relating to the dairy interests
(1912)

Woll, F. W.
The Wisconsin Cow Competition,   pp. 19-26 PDF (1.8 MB)


Page 20


20
Fortieth Annual Report of the
for where the spirit of rivalry enters, as is unavoidable In a competition
of this kind, each breeder will be likely to push his cows just as far
as he considers safe and will give the cows entered in the competition
the very best care that the conditions under which he is working will
permit. This is human nature and no special fault can be found with
breeders whose ambition leads them to surround the cows on the
competition with the most favorable conditions for the largest dairy
production of which they were capable.  In one respect, however,
we insisted from the start that there should be no letting down of
bars; cows on the competition were required to be bred regularly and
not later than five months from the last date of calving. In this way
a fair regularity of breeding was insured and all records that will
be considered in the award of prizes in the competition have, therefore,
been obtained without sacrificing the future usefulness of the cows
as members of the herd. It is known to most of you that this is a
-               decided step in advance, for nearly all the earlier large
records of
production were made by cows that were not bred until toward the
end of the testing year, or not at all, with the result that they never
came in calf again. The records thus made were, therefore, of no
practical value to ordinary dairy farmers, for these must secure a
regular flow of milk from their cows from year to year, and that can
only be done by breeding them regularly and having them drop a
calf about once a year so long as they are profitable members of the
herd. The large majority of the breeders entering their cows in the
competition succeeded in breeding their cows within the time limit
stated. Of the 271 cows whose records have been completed at the
time this was written, all but 49, or 18 per cent, were safely bred
within five months from the date of last calving. The records of the
18 per cent will not under the rules governing the competition be
considered in the award of the prizes.
The total number of cows entered in the competition was 506, of
which number 448 were pure bred cows and 58 grades. The different
breeds were represented as follows: Guernseys, 193 cows; Jerseys, 102;
and Holsteins, 211. These cows were owned by 56 different breeders,
21 Guernsey breeders having entered cows in the competition, 13 Jer-
sey and 22 Holstein breeders. The participation in the competition
was, therefore, limited to our three main dairy breeds and mostly to
pure breds among these breeds. Much to our regret there Is only
a small representation of grade cows, and no native cow or cows were
entered. The reasons for the failure of a large majority of our dairy
farmers who own only native or grade cows to take advantage of the
Inducements offered in the competition were considered in my address
before your association last February. They were very likely the
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