Previous studies have provided quantitative data regarding unusual animal behavior prior to earthquakes; however, few studies include long-term, observational data. Our previous study revealed that the milk yields of dairy cows decreased prior to an extremely large earthquake. To clarify whether the milk yields decrease prior to earthquakes, we examined the relationship between earthquakes of various magnitudes and daily milk yields. The observation period was one year. In the results, cross-correlation analyses revealed a significant negative correlation between earthquake occurrence and milk yields approximately three weeks beforehand. Approximately a week and a half beforehand, a positive correlation was revealed, and the correlation gradually receded to zero as the day of the earthquake approached. Future studies that use data from a longer observation period are needed because this study only considered ten earthquakes and therefore does not have strong statistical power. Additionally, we compared the milk yields with the subionospheric very low frequency/low frequency (VLF/LF) propagation data indicating ionospheric perturbations. The results showed that anomalies of VLF/LF propagation data emerged prior to all of the earthquakes following decreases in milk yields; the milk yields decreased earlier than propagation anomalies. We mention how ultralow frequency magnetic fields are a stimulus that could reduce milk yields. This study suggests that dairy cow milk yields decrease prior to earthquakes, and that they might respond to stimuli emerging earlier than ionospheric perturbations.
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