Specific light levels are necessary to affect the differences between the day-and-night rhythm of the cow's body. Well-planned lighting can provide sufficient light for cows during the daytime and ensure dark resting periods. Research has shown that the quantity and quality of cow lighting can affect cows' fertility and milk productivity.
In this article, we will explore how lighting can improve cow performance. At the same time, we have listed some of the main factors to consider when choosing a cow barn lighting solution.
How lighting technology improves cow performance
During the daytime, cows prefer to stay outdoors. As soon as the light level reaches the cow's retina, the cow's nerves will send a signal to the hypophysis in the brain. At that point, the cow's body will lower the production of melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone that can increase body fat percentage and disrupt the animal's productive capabilities. On the other hand, when the melatonin levels decrease, another hormone, IGF-1, increases in the animals' blood levels. The function of IGF-1 is to stimulate the animal's activity, which activates cows' milk production.
In addition, more lighting also means more feed intake for cows. In several studies, have been found that cows produce more milk by increasing their dry matter intake due to the extra light. In some tests, cows increase milk production because light exposure increases when they eat the same amount of dry matter. Lighting can impact the production of hormones and milk yield in cows.
Things to consider when choosing cow barn lighting solutions
Several points need to be considered when choosing cow barn lighting:
First of all, to maximize milk production, lighting should be used evenly throughout the barn for 16-18 hours. When selecting lighting, choose the flicker-free lighting that can dim from 0-100%.
Try to choose lighting that can be simply installed, save energy, and sustain longer life. Cows tend to move towards light and are sensitive to the strong contrast between light and dark, thus a barn owner should choose a light with high light transmittance and optimal brightness uniformity. Ultimately, it is always recommended to choose dust-proof and waterproof lighting.
Why LED lighting solution is suitable for cow barn
LED lighting can impact livestock productivity and well-being in many aspects. According to a 2016 U.S. Department of Energy report, lighting has been shown to reduce stress and improve disease resistance, making animals happier and healthier. In 2015, Michigan State University conducted a study where they tested the potential of LED-based long daylight for milk production. The results showed an 8% increase in milk production, which means that increasing the daily light in cows also increased milk production.
Moreover, LED lighting offers high energy efficiency and long service life. Such a solution does not require frequent maintenance and can operate efficiently in cold weather. When compared with halogen or white woven bulbs, LED lighting does not generate excessive heat, thus reducing the risk of fires. Thanks to all these properties, LED lighting is the most versatile and accessible solution to improve barns` production.
Hontech-Wins provides LED lighting to cows' barns that directly improve their health and performance. Besides, Hontech-Wins has over 10 years of experience in IP67 dimming lighting and provides many solutions for lighting poultry, pigs, cows, and mushroom houses. We have agents in Ireland, the UK, France, Poland, Ukraine, and Sri Lanka.
Contact us if you are interested in a cow lighting solution!