Minnesota DHIA published a list of the 64 top cows ranked by total lifetime pounds of fat and protein combined for 2020. These are truly super cows because they produce a lot, and they have stayed in the herd for many lactations. In the table below are the top six cows. Cow 8302, owned by Pater Dairy, has produced 26,070 pounds of fat and protein, and 401,152 pounds of energy corrected milk. That is 13 tons of fat and protein. 400,000 pounds of milk is eight semi-tanker loads or two tankers per teat. Remarkable.
Farm        Cow         Age, months    Lactations    Fat and Protein     ECM
Pater        8302               126                   9              26,070 lbs.    401,152
Larcrest   Crimson          154                   6              25,543 lbs.    37,385
GarLin      8251               137                   9              25,521 lbs.    387,305
Stelling     Lark                115                   7              23,848 lbs.    35,934
Selke         973                112                   8              23,346 lbs.    360,935
Hollerman 27G                145                   9             23,064 lbs.    357,890


    How much milk did they produce per day? Below is a table showing the top six cows ranked by total pounds of ECM produced per day in milk. The next column is total pounds of ECM per day of life going all the way back to birth. Hyde-Park’s 3887 produced 134 pounds of ECM for every one of her 2,412 days in milk over eight lactations. She is truly a super cow.
Farm              Cow      Age, months    Lactations    ECM/DIM    ECM/Day       ECM
Hyde-Park     3897          112                     8                134               95            322,106
Stelling          Orpha        110                     7                127               95             317,755
Pater             8302          126                     9                126              105            401,152
Hyde-Park     3876          117                     8                124               88             312,533
GarLin           11555        102                     7                124              100            309,278
Hinckley          2113         114                    8                122                88             306,186


    To be a super cow, many of these cows had to be reproductively efficient. The table below is the top six cows ranked by lowest days in milk per lactation and shows total pounds of ECM and ECM per productive day. Swenson’s 2112 has averaged 289 days over 10 lactations, and the next five cows’ average days are only a few days longer. These are reproductive super cows.
Farm             Cow        Age, months    Lactations    DIM/Lactation    ECM        ECM/DIM
Swenson       2112       131                        10                289              304,080    105
GarLin          10845      120                         9                 290              302,230    116
Keifland         215reg    119                         9                 290              277,374    106
Frendshuh    5M1564   120                         9                 291              238,671    91
Fjelmar          948         125                        10                292              309,935    106
Pater             8325        127                        10                294             328,305    112


    How about milk per lactation? Here are the top six cows ranked by ECM by lactation. Larcrest’s Crimson produced 62,398 pounds of ECM per lactation for six lactations.
Farm               Cow        Age, months    Lactations    ECM/Lactation    ECM
Larcrest        Crimson          154                    6                 62,398        374,385
Valley Acres    63                 113                    5                 57,836        289,179
Stellling           Lark              115                    7                 51,336        359,354
GarLin          11524              102                    6                 51,259        307,556
Friendshuh    3J170             131                   7                  50,126        350,881
Stelling         Venice             100                   6                  49,123        294,739


    There are some other breeds on the list too. Here all the other breeds ranked by total pounds of fat and protein. GarLin’s 10340 produced over 20,000 of fat and protein combined. There is even a Jersey: Co-Jo Dairy’s 162. Even small cows can be super cows.
Farm              Cow         Breed        Age, months    Lactations    Fat and Protein
GarLin           10340    Crossbred          124                 9                 20,619 lbs.
Valley Acres  10336    Crossbred          123                 9                 19,896 lbs.
Co-Jo Dairy     162        Jersey              130                 8                 19,850 lbs.
Valley Acres   11065    Crossbred          107                8                  18,497 lbs.

    
    Super cows are super money makers. They produce many tons of product over their lifetimes, and they require far fewer replacements over that time period than the average cow. Consider the cows with the most days in milk in the table below. Gruber’s Susie has produced milk for 3,846 days without needing a replacement and has produced over 300,000 of milk in that time. She is a super money maker.
Farm                Cow    DIM       Age, months    Lactations    ECM
Gruber            Susie   3,846          166                    10       306,983
Crystal View    1018   3,813          160                     11       325,023
Hunstinger       188     3,793          156                    10       320,058
Larcrest         Crimson3,758          154                     6        374,385
Redalen          Kash     3,646         158                    11       298,580
Wendt             788       3,523          151                   11       311,637

    How does one get, or make, a super cow? Surely there are a lot of factors; however, top-quality animal care to animals has to be one of the most significant. One-third of the cows on this list reside in herds owned by clients of our veterinary practice, so I can say that with some authority. I am pretty sure top quality cow care is the standard on the rest of these farms as well. Super cows have super owners. Thank you all for taking such great care of your animals.
    Bennett is one of four dairy veterinarians at Northern Valley Dairy Production Medicine Center in Plainview, Minnesota. He also consults on dairy farms in other states. He and his wife, Pam, have four children. Jim can be reached at bennettnvac@gmail.com with comments or questions.