milk cell counts

milk cell counts

the counting of cells in milk, which is now standard practice for the assessment of cows for the presence of mastitis. The techniques used nowadays are electronically based and set to count somatic cells as a group without differentiation. The popular methods are the individual cow cell count and the bulk milk cell count. For the individual cow test, milk that has been collected for butter fat testing can be used, and this greatly reduces the cost of the operation. Another innovative technique is the preservation of the milk samples so that counting can be delayed. Counting is carried out on three or four occasions during lactation and a decision is made about culling the cow or giving her dry-period treatment at the end of the lactation. For the bulk milk cell count, a count is done on samples collected at regular intervals from the bulk milk supplied by the herd.