In keeping with our ethos of Delivering Global Dairy Expertise, we will have expert speakers from around to world to bring you updates on the latest research in their field and practical take home messages to implement on your farms.
Alex Bach is an ICREA Research Professor at the Department of Ruminant Production of IRTA. Alex conducts research in ruminant production systems. His research focuses on optimizing the growth curve of dairy replacement heifers, as well as their management and housing systems. He also uses mathematical models to simulate work-flows of ruminant production systems with the aim of helping the decision-making process in dairy enterprises. In addition, Alex conducts basic research to understand the physiology and metabolism of ruminants with especial emphasis on the impact of nutrition and management during early development on future metabolic function.
Alex has received several awards in recognition to his research activities, has spoken at more than 100 international congresses, is author or co-author of more than 120 peer-reviewed publications, more than 100 extension articles, and more than 20 books (or book chapters). He has served as a scientific expert in several committees of the European Food Safety Authority. He is section editor and sits in the editorial boards of several scientific journals, and is member of various scientific committees.
I grew up in a family of bovine practitioners in Brazil. After being awarded a DVM degree from my hometown veterinary school in Brazil, I moved to the United States to pursue further academic and clinical training. My first stop was at Cornell University where I completed a production medicine residency and a PhD. Prior to the end of my graduate school program, I was hired by Colorado State University as a Clinical Instructor in Dairy Population Health Management. After two years as an Instructor in Colorado, I moved north to the University of Minnesota to join the Dairy Production Medicine group.
My clinical experience in NY and CO greatly influenced my research throughout the years and during my career I have developed several applied research projects to answer questions asked by producers and fellow clinicians. Additionally, as a practitioner, I was constantly dealing with the direct or indirect effects of the metabolic problems (i.e. ketosis, displaced abomasum, fatty liver, hypocalcemia) typical of the transition from late gestation to early lactation in dairy cows. Hence, my interest in improving our understanding of the metabolic adaptations of the peri-parturient dairy cow.
Tom qualified as a vet from the University of Bristol in 2008. After three years in general farm animal practice, he joined Lambert Leonard and May, a specialist dairy practice in the west of England. A growing interest in udder health and milking performance led to further specialisation in this area, with Tom providing advanced advice on mastitis, milk quality and milking efficiency issues.
Working in this area highlighted the need for the dairy industry to have a better understanding of the relationship between the cow and the milking machine. With colleague Dan Humphries, Tom started Advance Milking, a consultancy service for all aspects of udder health and milking machine optimisation. Tom provides specialist advice for dairy farms in the UK and Ireland, as well as working around the world to deliver training and independent support to other dairy industry stakeholders. Conducting and facilitating research projects is a growing area of work and Tom is delighted to have the opportunity to share some of the results from this work at TotalDairy 2018.
Andrew qualified as a veterinary surgeon from the University of Bristol in 2007 and then proceeded to work in a cattle practice based in South West England and South Wales for 6 years. During this time he developed an interest in farmer training and dairy cow mastitis, becoming a LANTRA approved trainer and AHDB Mastitis Control Plan Deliverer. He then joined the School of Veterinary Medicine and Science (SVMS) at the University of Nottingham in 2013 as a Resident in Dairy Herd Health and Production. Whilst at SVMS he split his time between teaching the final year herd health rotation, working in the clinical associate practice, research and consultancy.
He gained a Certificate in Advanced Veterinary Practice with a designation in Cattle in 2014 and a European Diploma in Bovine Health Management in 2016. At present he is finalising the completion of a Masters in Veterinary Medicine. This focuses on investigating the prediction of dry period intramammary infection status change using lifetime cow factors from milk recording information.
Andrew lives on the outskirts of Sheffield and when not at work enjoys mountain biking, running and looking after his small flock of sheep.
Claire Wathes graduated with a first degree in Biological Sciences then studied for a PhD at the University of Nottingham. She then worked at the University of Bristol and the Babraham Institute, Cambridge before taking up her present post as Professor of Veterinary Reproduction at the Royal Veterinary College London in 1994. Her main research focus is on farm animal reproduction. She has a longstanding interest in the causes of infertility in dairy cows. The current main emphasis of her studies is in understanding the metabolic signals which influence fertility. This has led to an interest in aspects of growth and development in heifers which affect their performance as an adult. She was awarded the Research Medal of the Royal Agricultural Society of England (RASE) in 2006 and the Marshall Medal of the Society for Reproduction and Fertility in 2015. She is a Fellow of the RASE and a Council member of the Royal Society of Biology. She has published over 250 research papers and reviews in the general area of farm animal reproduction, with a current H-index of 49.