NDGA Dairy Herd Improvement Program
These are the Rules for participating in any milk test with NDGA.
1) Must be a NDGA member in good standing.
2) All Nigerian Dairy does must be tattooed or micro chipped to be on test.
3) All Nigerian Dairy does must meet the height requirements before testing. No doe over 21” will be allowed to participate in DHI testing with NDGA.
NDGA RULES FOR MILK PRODUCTION TESTING
Most everyone reading the milk program rules for the first time find them quite overwhelming.
We believe once you understand the reason for these rules, they will become clearer. We will also be happy to answer any of your questions. Please remember, there is no such thing as a stupid question.
The National Dairy Herd Improvement Association was founded by dairymen who were looking for a way to improve the overall production of the cows within their herds. They first developed a set of rules all dairymen would abide by, no matter what part of the country they lived in. These rules are called them the Uniform Operating Procedures (UOP).
These are the standards for which all tests are conducted.
Once a month for 10 months after freshening, each cows milk was weighed and samples were taken. Each sample had a corresponding number to identify which cow the sample was taken from. That number was placed on the paperwork showing the cows name or herd number, DOB, number of lactation's, and the date of freshening. The samples were sent to a lab to be tested for Butterfat (BF %) and Protein (Pro) content and the SCC, Somatic Cell Count. The lab results, along with the paperwork for each cow, was forwarded to a Processing Center where the total milk weight, BF% and Pro each cow had produced for the that month was calculated. Those test results were recorded into a database. The updated paperwork was sent back to the dairyman.
At the end of the 305 day lactation, when the cows were dried off in preparation for their next calving, the processing center sent the dairyman the final report showing the total milk weight, BF%, Pro, with the SCC each cow had produced during the 305 day test.
This information was then applied to their breeding program. Any animal producing below the overall objectives of the dairyman, were culled; those who met or exceeded their objectives were kept and their offspring were used for breeding or sold to other dairymen. By selectively breeding these superior producers, dairymen were able to increase milk weight, BF%, and protein while lowering the overall cost of production. Less animals, same or increased production, lower costs.
ONE DAY TEST
Individual or Group, at home or at an NDGA sanctioned show.
The procedure for a One Day Test is the same procedure used each month for those on 305 Day testing.
The One Day test is most often seen at shows and can be done at home with a single herd or a group of herds.
Is also used for the Verification Test (VT) providing the certified technician has not tested your herd in the prior year.
1) If participating in a Group One Day Test, one person must be chosen to be in charge of submitting the Application with the appropriate fees. If the One Day Milk Test is held at a state or county fair, the rules governing entry to the fair must also be observed. No fees are required for the NDGA National Show or the NDGA National Youth Show. *There will be a fee for each doe participating in the test which will be determined by the show committee or person in charge of the test
2) Any amount of does may be tested at no extra cost for a group test.
3) All milk outs must be done in public view, for a group test and in the same order during group or home test, for each milking. The licensed tester may check each doe to ensure all participants comply with the preliminary milk out requirement. The licensed tester has the right to request that a doe be milked again to comply with the requirement. Refusal by the owner or caretaker will eliminate the doe from participation in the test.
4) Does participating in a One Day Group Test must be at the testing sight 2 hours before the initial milk out.
5) Prior to the initial milk out, the tester will be responsible for checking the tattoos or microchips of every doe to verify they correspond exactly to the tattoo/microchip listed on her registration papers. Does with illegible or incorrect tattoo/microchip may participate but will not be eligible for an Award. Does shall be measured and the height recorded on the doe sheets, Only does meeting NDGA height standards will be tested. This does not apply to does that are not registered with NDGA.
6) Technician will weigh and record the milk weight at three consecutive milking's, Only taking a sample from the last two official milking’s. Milk weight from the last two milking’s is used for determining the total weight of the official test. Tester will forward milk samples and all paperwork to the DHIA Lab.
7) NDGA Milk Chair will tabulate the points and notify participant(s) of any awards their does have earned.
8) All DHIA lab testing fees are the responsibility of the participant(s) and are included in the *fee, set for each doe.
9) Weighing and sampling must be done by a licensed tester. UOP must be observed during sampling and weighing, and must be done in full public view.
10) No doe may participate in any milk test prior to 6 days fresh.
*Fee for participants testing at a show is set by the show committee or person in charge of the group test.
Calculating points for One Day Milk Tests
Nigerian Does need 35 points in order to receive a One Day Production Award.
Example: doe produces a total of 5 lbs of milk with 2.2% butterfat and has been fresh for 90 days
5 x 5.55 = 27.75 5 lbs of milk x 5.55 points per pound
2.2 x 5 = 11 x 1.11 = 12.21 2.22% butterfat x 5 lbs of milk x 1.11 BF points
90 x 0.555 = 4.955 90 days fresh x .0555 points per day
TOTAL = 44.9555
Days fresh, a maximum of 19.98 points will be used when calculating the award.
SUGGESTIONS FOR HOSTING A ONE DAY MILK TEST
AT HOME or at an NDGA SHOW
After making the decision to host a One Day Milk Test:
1) Get a commitment from a certified technician (Tester)who will be available on the desired date and submit the application to test to NDGA Milk Chair. Print off a copy of the Doe sheet found on the website or have the Milk Chair send one to you. Make sure there are enough copies for all the does being tested. You may make as many copies as needed.
2) If done at a Show, talk to the judge to see if they would be willing to do Height Certifications either prior to or after the milk test.
This is in addition to the Tester measuring the doe prior to the test. Make sure there is a measuring stick available before the test.
3) There will need to be an adequate area to conduct the test. If this is a large group test you may want to have a second Technician.
4) You will need extra ink pens for owners to fill out forms for a group test, a flashlight to check tattoos and a chip reader for those who have micro chips.
5) A blanket to form a dark area for checking tattoos is helpful.
6) Testing will have three milk outs each 12 hours apart, i.e. Fri 7PM tester may weigh milk but will not record amount on official paperwork, Sat 7AM first official milk out, Tester will record the weight on the paperwork then take a sample. The final official milk out would be Sat 7PM, the Technician will record weight and take the second sample, placing it in the vial with the first sample collected 12 hours before. Only the weight and samples from the last 2 official milk outs will be used to tabulate the score .
Check-in time for Group Tests:
All does must be in testing area at least 2 hours if possible before the initial milk out. Make sure there are enough doe sheets for all the participants and are filled out properly and all fees have been paid.
Does to be tested will be measured and tattoos or microchips will be checked against their registration papers. This will be done by the certified tester. Any doe not meeting the NDGA height requirements will not be eligible for any NDGA awards.
Make sure all milk containers are empty. If the tester feels a doe has not been totally milked out, they may request the owner to finish milking the doe. Any owner/participant who refuses this request will not be allowed to participate in the milk test.
305 Day Testing
Here are the most common testing options. NDGA will recognize any option as long as it meets DHI Uniform Operating Procedures (UOP).
Code 20-Standard or DHI-Conventional. This is the most used option.
A certified technician comes to your farm or ranch once a month to weighs and samples each goat’s milk.
One Verification Test required to be eligible for Top Ten, *DAR or *DLT awards. Does will be measured 2 times, once during the first milk test and the second may be done during the VT. See One Day rules for testing procedures.
Code 00-Every-other-month (EOM).
A certified technician weighs, records and samples 2 consecutive milking’s every other month. You will weigh and record on the intervening months. 2 verification tests required to be eligible for Top Ten. See One Day rules for testing procedures.
Code 40-Owner Sampler (OS).
Owner weighs milk and takes samples each month. This test option requires one Verification Tests between 50 and 160 days to be eligible for DAR or DLT award and Top Ten. See One Day rules for testing procedures.
This is for two different herd owners who will test each others herds once a month for the duration of the test. 1 VT is required for each herd to be eligible for any milk awards.
Three or more owners testing each others herd. Any of the above recording programs may be used (except, of course, owner sampler). Each group member must use the same option and be a certified tester.
1) One person in the group must be trained as a supervisor.
2) Supervisor will weigh and sample each herd (except for their own) and be responsible for filling out the forms to send with the milk samples with each of the herds as well as taking height measurements on the first test and the last test.
3) Other participants will take turns testing the supervisor’s herd, with no one participant testing the Supervisors herd 2 months in a row.
4) 1 verification test to be done by a tester that has not tested any of the participating herds/does in the prior 12 months to be eligible for Top Ten awards.
Drawbacks to this type of testing would be if one or more of the group decides to go off test for some reason, the group may become unofficial.
Testing Intervals (days between tests)
The suggested number of days between tests is 30. Check your DHI Assoc. limits. Herd owners should be sure their testing intervals fit into the definition of a DHIR year. The test year consists of 10 or more consecutive tests in a 12-month DHI period running January 1 to December 31.
DHI negatively weights records of freshened does that go past 75 days before participating in a 305 Day Test. That means if you have a doe on 305 day test you need to test her before she is past 75 days fresh. No doe may participate in any milk test prior to 6 days fresh. Fresh means the day she kidded. The day the doe kidded is added into the number of days fresh.
A. This is a milk test done by a certified technician that has not tested your herd in the past 12 months. It is required at about mid-lactation for all herds on test. This rule may result in having to hold more than one verification test during the year if any of the does on test do not fit into this time frame. IE, if you breed your does to kid at different times of the year, you will need 2 VT’s.
B. One Day test held at a show may be used for a VT as long as the certified tester has not tested your herd in the prior year.
C. Must follow NDHIA Uniform Operating Procedures (UOP)
305 DAY TEST RULES:
1. Must choose an Official DHI test option
2. Appropriate forms and fees must be received by the NDGA Milk Chair 30 days prior to first test. This applies to herds that are participating in 305 Day test for the first time. After a herd is put on test, the renewal for the following year must be received by Jan 31 the following year.
3. Nigerian Does on breeding loan, or being housed with a herd for more than 3 months, but belonging to someone else, must be added and put on test if the doe becomes fresh.
4. If at the end of lactation (305 days or less) a doe milks the required amount for her age (See chart), you must send a copy of her DHI final doe page to the Milk Chair The deadline to be eligible for Top Ten and be included in the Summer Edition of the Nigerian News, copies must be received by March 31.
5. If a doe milks past the 305 days while on test, only the amount produced during the 305 day test will be used to determine any awards. The DHI year runs from January 1 to December 31.
6. If a doe aborts while in milk and has carried a kid less than 80 days, her current records will continue without interruption. If a breeding date is not available, and the doe aborts while in milk less than 240 days, her current record shall continue without interruption. Except for the two specific situations stated above, the current record shall end and a new lactation/test shall begin.
7. At no time shall anything be given to a doe on test for the purpose of influencing her production other than what she is normally fed during lactation, nor shall any feeding, care or management practice that is intended to cause abnormal yield of milk, butterfat or protein to be followed. Nothing in this rule prevents proper medical attention for a sick doe, either by a veterinarian, owner, or person in charge. In any such cases, the veterinarian, owner, or person in charge shall make a written statement, to the registry, describing the condition of the doe and reporting all medicine used. Statement must be dated and sent to registry following treatment. Any violation of this rule may cause doe in question or entire herd records to become unofficial.
8. Inform your tester anytime a doe is ill (i.e. sick, off feed, in season, has mastitis etc.)
9. Fees for subsequent year must be paid by Jan. 31 of each year.
10. All Nigerian does will be measured prior to their first test, and at their last test. Any does measuring over 21” will not be allowed to participate in 305 day milk test with NDGA. Does measuring over 21” at the end of lactation will receive their award designation and will have OH and the year they went over, behind the award. She will not be allowed to participate in any future tests with NDGA.
*Note: if for any reason a doe does not finish the full 305 day test, but meets the production requirements prior to going off test she is still eligible for an AR but is not eligible for a “Long Term Milker” award.
NDGA PRODUCTION AWARDS FOR DOES
NDGA offers several Production Awards for Does that have participated in an Official Milk test. To differentiate our awards from other registries, our designations will begin with the letter D, i.e. a doe earning her star * on a One Day Test, her award designation will be *DD.
Before any doe may receive an NDGA Production Award, she must meet the NDGA Breed Standard.
Any doe measuring over 21” at the withers, in accordance with NDGA measuring rules, will not be eligible to participate in a One Day Milk Test. Does participating in 305 day test meeting the height requirements at the first test and subsequently measures over height at the end of lactation, will receive her production award with the designation OH (Over Height) and the year behind her award and will not be eligible for Top Ten awards.
A doe with a Production Award from another registry may be eligible for a NDGA Production Award.
If a doe has received a production award from another registry and is registered with NDGA and meets the official height standard, she may be eligible for a NDGA Production Award.
To be eligible:
The doe must have been on a production test that meets NDGA Testing Options and the rules governing the test.
If you feel that a doe is eligible you must send the following to the NDGA Milk chair for approval:
A letter stating the type of test the doe participated in.
A copy of the DHI final doe page or if award was earned on a One Day Test, a copy of the worksheet used during the test plus the lab reports.
A height certificate with date height was taken if not written on the VT or One Day worksheet
The appropriate fees for the test, i.e. One Day/305 Day-$10 plus $1 per doe
If NDGA has any questions, you may be asked to submit additional information. Milk Chair notifies the owner of any awards earned.
A Production Award from NDGA may not be accepted by another registry.
Due to varying rules by the different registries, not all production records may be accepted by another registry. If you are hoping to get awards from more than one registry, please check to make sure the testing option you have chosen will be accepted by all the registries.
MILK AWARDS FOR DOES
Please note; before a milk award designation there will be a star * . The Star is automatically given to a doe who has earned a milk award through any Milk Production test. For a 305 day test it signifies the doe has met the quota in pounds of Milk OR BF%.
A plus + at the end of the award designation signifies the doe has met the quota for BOTH pounds of milk and BF%.
DAIRY LONG TERM MILKER-*DLT
The Long Term Milker Award for does who were milked the full 305 days and met the milk requirement in either milk weight or butterfat%.
DAIRY LONG TERM MILKER -*DLT+
The Long Term Milker + Award is for does who were milked the full 305 days and met the milk requirement in both milk weight and butterfat%.
DAIRY ADVANCED REGISTRY *DAR
The Advanced Registry Award * for does who were not milked the full 305 days and met the requirement in either milk or butterfat.
DAIRY ADVANCED REGISTRY *DAR+
The Advanced Registry Award for does who were not milked the full 305 days and met the requirement in both milk and butterfat.
DAIRY ONE DAY AWARD *DD
The One Day Award is available to does that meet or exceed the required amount of points earned at any “official” One Day Milk Test.
The Star is automatically given to a doe who has earned the award through any Milk Production test. With the exception of a doe who has her star thru her progeny, (see Progeny Award below) Does may have numbered stars i.e. 3*DD, 4*DD and so forth. This will occur when daughters of a star dam (*) earn their stars. Should a daughter of a numbered star doe, not earn her milk award, the chain is broken and the process starts over. This only applies to the daughters who were unable to earn a star.
Does may receive any number of the above awards, but only 1 star (*) will apply
** Note - Does may earn a consecutive numbered *DD only from an unbroken chain of does who have earned their *DD, Daughters of a doe who has earned her award through her offspring (*DP) will begin with the designation of 2*DD,
Does may earn this award by any of the following:
1) 3 daughters, from at least 2 sires, that have each earned a star award (*),*note
2) 2 sons, from 2 sires, that each have a Progeny award (+DB).*note
3) 2 daughters that each have earned a star award (*) from at least 2 sires and 1 son that has a Progeny award (+DS) *note
All progeny must be registered with NDGA for any awards to be given. Accompanying paperwork on progeny must accompany application for the doe to receive her *DP.
If NDGA has any questions you may be asked to supply additional paperwork.
*Note: All progeny must be registered with NDGA and certified to meet the breed standard for height requirements. NDGA feels that it is only through the awarding of animals that meet the breed standard that the breed standard will be preserved.
NDGA PRODUCTION AWARDS FOR BUCKS
NDGA offers several Production Awards for Bucks that have proven, through production testing, that the Nigerian is truly a “Miniature Dairy Goat”.
Before any buck may receive an NDGA Production Award, he must meet the NDGA Breed Standard. Any buck that is over 23 “at the withers (in accordance with NDGA measuring rules) at the time he becomes eligible for the award will not receive the award. We recommend having your bucks Height Certified at the age of 3 years and added to their Registration papers. This may be done at a show.
A buck with a Production Award from another registry may be eligible for a NDGA Production Award. If a buck has received a production award from another registry and is registered with NDGA, he may be eligible for a NDGA Production Award as long as he meets the NDGA height requirements. Any information you may have that would confirm the application i.e. copies of an original award certificate from another registry showing how the buck received the award and a certified height certificate, will speed up the application process.
DWARF PROGENY AWARD (+DS)
A buck may receive a Progeny Award (+DS) in one of the following 3 ways:
1) He has 3 daughters, out of 3 different dams, that have *earned a production award in NDGA
2) He has 2 sons, out of 2 different dams, that have a progeny award (+DP) award or equivalent (+DS)
3) He has 2 daughters, out of 2 different dams, that have *earned a Production Award in NDGA and 1 son that has earned a Progeny Award (+DS) in NDGA.
*Note Daughters must have earned their award by way of actual participation in an official milk test, sons and daughters must be registered with NDGA and meet the height requirements.
Bucks may receive several Progeny Award (+DS) certificates, but there may be no doubling of offspring or their dams.
Example: 2 awards given on 6 daughters; all daughters must have different dams (i.e. 2 awards = 6 daughters, 6 dams =2+DS
DAIRY ADVANCED REGISTRY AWARD (+DAR) buck may receive a +DAR award if he has 3 daughters, out of 3 different dams, that have a Production Award earned by way of a 305 Day Test. *
DAIRY INHERITED STAR (*DS)
The Inherited Star Award is available to bucks, whose:
1) Dam has an Advanced Registry + Award (DAR+) or One Day Award (*DD) ** and his sire has a Progeny Award (+DS or +DAR).
2) Dam has an Advanced Registry + Award (DAR+) or One Day Award *DD ** and his sire’s dam has an Advance Registry + Award (DAR+) or One Day Award (*DD) **
A buck is limited to one *DS
* Note: Sons and daughters must be registered with NDGA and must meet the breed height standard.
** Note: Due to the importance a buck has in a herd, sons of does with a *DP, will be awarded the designation of *DG (Dwarf Genetics) this designation shows he has the potential of becoming a production buck.
Rules for Top Ten List:
1) Must have finished “official test” prior to January 1st and met the NDGA height requirements and production requirements.
2) Paperwork deadline is March 31 following the end of the previous years lactation.
If this deadline is missed, the award will be given but the production record will only be available for use in the future.
3) All does that have received a Production Award, regardless of age, will be allowed on the Annual Top Ten Lists providing they have met all the requirements.
4) A doe may have more than 1 production record, in the same category, in the all Time Top Ten Lists.
5) Bucks who have earned an award through their progeny and their names.
HERD FEE for 305 day tests: $10.00 per year plus $1 per doe tested. Fee is due when submitting Application to Test. Fees for subsequent years are due January 31. Membership dues must also be current.
REGISTRATION CERTIFICATE REVISED: $3.50 (member) $7.00 (non-member)
CERTIFICATES-ALL DOE PRODUCTION AWARDS: $3.50 (member) $7.00 (non-member)
CERTIFICATES FOR ALL BUCKS AWARDS: $3.50 (member) $7.00 (non-member)
ONE DAY MILK TEST FEES:
Group held at an NDGA SHOW, Fair or at home: $25 (10 or more days prior) no limit on number of does tested.
Person in charge is responsible for submitting an application to test and making sure the samples are handled properly and sent to the lab of choice after the test.
No fee required for a One Day test held at the National Show.
INDIVIDUAL and 305 Day TEST: $10.00 plus $1 per animal tested, responsible for DHI fees and any DHI tester* fees.
*Note: licensed technician fees may vary; you will need to find out how much they will charge prior to the test
HEIGHT CERTIFICATION: $5 (includes return postage & certificate revision)