Dairy 1 - research areas

Growing healthy heifers research

Growing healthy heifers

On Dairy 1 research that will help farmers in determining the most efficient and effective way of raising dairy heifers to meet live weight targets is underway. The aim of this research is to determine the effect of high and low milk treatment and a post- weaning diet of ryegrass or herb pastures on the growth rate of dairy heifers. The study is also collecting data on colostrum quality and parasites in calves.


Dr Penny Back

Scenario modelling to assess nitrogen loss

Project Dairy 1 researchers are modelling whole farm scenarios to assess the impact of different management strategies on farm performance and nitrogen loss. This research will determine, and provide evidence for, the best management strategies for managing nitrogen loss in a sensitive catchment.


Dr Lydia Cranston
Associate Professor David Horne
Dr David Gray

Growing perennial crops for dairying

No. 1 Dairy farm has 20 hectares of perennial crops. The aim of the crop research as part of Project Dairy 1 is to develop a better understanding of seasonal dry matter production of lucerne and a chicory, plantain and clover sward mix.  The research will contribute to a better understanding of the production of perennial pastures on alluvial soils. Farmers will be able to use the results to inform decision making around using alternative pastures to grass, including factors such as reseeding potential, drought resilience and feed quality.


Dr Lydia Cranston
Professor Peter Kemp
Mr Martin Correa Luna

Assessment of transport and transformation of nitrogen in the subsurface environment

Field measurements on Dairy 1 and lab experiments are being used to develop methods and procedures to assess and characterise the transport and transformation of nitrate-nitrogen in alluvial unsaturated and saturated (shallow groundwater) zones. With the results of this research farmers will be able to identify the capacity of their land to transport and transform nitrogen, and understand the soil and landuse practises that will reduce the amount of nitrogen reaching waterways, while maintaining productivity.


Dr Ranvir Singh
Associate Professor David Horne

Productive and reproductive performance of dairy cows milked once-a-day

The strategy on Dairy 1 is to have a herd comprising Jersey, Holstein-Friesian and Friesian Jersey cross-bred cows.

Research underway on Dairy 1 is examining the productivity and reproductive performance of the three breeds and the effect of a Once-a-day Selection Index on the three groups.

Milk production, live weight, body condition and somatic cell score during the first 150 days of lactation.pdf (615 KB)


Professor Nicolas Lopez-Villalobos

Measuring the environmental footprint of milk

Project Dairy 1 is using a life cycle assessment methodology to measure the environmental footprint of milk produced at the farm.

Results from this work will be used to measure the impact of initiatives aimed at reducing the impact of milk production on the environment.


Associate Professor Sarah McLaren
Dr Marisia Silva

Massey Contact Centre Mon - Fri 8:30am to 5:00pm 0800 MASSEY (+64 6 350 5701) TXT 5222 contact@massey.ac.nz Web chat Staff Alumni News Māori @ Massey