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Veterinary Medicine International
Volume 2012, Article ID 236956, 7 pages
Research Article

Continuous and Long-Term Measurement of Reticuloruminal pH in Grazing Dairy Cows by an Indwelling and Wireless Data Transmitting Unit

Federal Agricultural Research and Education Centre Raumberg-Gumpenstein, Institute of Farm Animal Welfare and Farm Animal Health, A-8952 Irdning, Austria

Received 9 May 2012; Accepted 9 October 2012

Academic Editor: Kazim Sahin

Copyright © 2012 J. Gasteiner et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The aim of the present study was the continuous measurement of ruminal pH in grazing dairy cows to monitor the diets effects on ruminal pH value. A novel indwelling pH-measurement and data transmitting system was given to 6 multiparous cows orally. Ruminal pH was measured every 600 sec over a 40 d period. After barn feeding and changeover to pasture, the following 3 treatments (2 cows/treatment) were included in the measurement period: continuous grazing (G), continuous grazing plus 4 kg/d of hay fed twice daily (GH), and continuous grazing plus 4 kg/d of concentrate (GC). Ruminal pH decreased significantly ( ) from to pH during feed changeover to pasture. Mean ruminal pH for G, GH, and GC was 6.36, 6.56, and 6.01. Mean 24-h minimum pH was 5.95, 6.20 and, 5.58. The time pH was below 6.3, 6.0, 5.8, and 5.5, for G it was 583, 91, 26, and 3 min/d, for GH it was 97, 12, 0, and 0 min/d and for GC it was 1126, 621, 347, and 101 min/d, respectively. Results were significantly influenced by the diet. The indwelling pH-measurement and data transmitting system is a very useful and proper tool for long-term measurement of ruminal pH in cows.