Even taking into account that February 2016 is leap month, dairy cow culling was up almost 1% from a year ago (0.8%, actually). There were 256,000 dairy cows slaughtered through federally inspected plants this February, up 14,000 head from last year, the United States Department of Agriculture reported this afternoon.
However, when you compare February 2016 to January 2016, the month over month figures showed 3.4% decline. And when you calculate the number on days of business (January 2016 had 20 days; February 2016 had 21), the decline is even more striking with 1,065 fewer cows per day, or 8%, being culled.
On a year-to-date basis (same number of business days in January and February 2015 and 2016), culling is up 4,200 head, or 0.8%.
You can read the entire slaughter report here.