Heat stress

M. Rhoads

Implementing strategies to reduce heat stress in dairy herds

Dr. Michelle Rhoads
Department of Animal & Poultry Sciences
Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University


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 Michelle (Shelly) Rhoads is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences at Virginia Tech. She was born and raised on a family dairy farm in mid-Missouri. After receiving a B.S. degree in Animal Science from the University of Missouri, Shelly went on to complete an M.S. degree from Cornell University and then returned to the University of Missouri for her Ph.D. Before coming to Virginia Tech, Shelly served as a USDA-funded post-doc and then Assistant Professor at the University of Arizona. Research projects currently being conducted in her laboratory involve investigating aberrations in nutritional and/or endocrine profiles of multiple species with special interests in insulin, growth hormone, insulin-like growth factor-I, ghrelin and reproductive hormones. Specifically, she is investigating the nutritional and metabolic regulation of fertility, and how aspects of the reproductive tract change in response to environment and plane of nutrition. The primary aim of her research is to elucidate factors involved in the regulation of fertility in order to develop management programs that optimize reproductive capacity.

Consequences of Heat Stress on cows

Strategies to cope with Heat Stress

Cooling strategies

An app for Heat Stress

Cooling methods

Is cooling dry cows necessary?

Feeding strategies

Genetic selection and its consequences

Reproductive management

Managing reproduction during Heat Stress

Using conventional or sex-sorted semen?

Does sire matter?

Embryo transfer

Approaches to autumn return to fertility

Other strategies

Advising producers