Tuesday, 28 June 2011

A little Supplementation!

As I've mentioned before all our cows are out on pasture for the breeding season and they have been keeping us busy with regular checks. Checking everyone on a regular basis is very important to make sure all animals are healthy and making sure they have pasture, moving them when they run out.

Salt (red) and seven way

On a regular basis we also fill up tubs with mineral and salt as a supplementation and is very important to the cattle's diet. We have three different types of mineral that we give the cows:
  • Our soil is extremely low in cooper and zinc so we feed them a hi-boot cooper and zinc salt that supplies them with the loss in the feed they eat. It also has traces of magnesium which is also a deficiency in cattle.
  • The mineral we feed with the salt is an ALT-GEN 17-17 Beef and Range Mineral which contains mainly calcium and phosphorus for the cattle's diet.
  • Some of our pastures contain alfalfa which is a legume plant that grows purple flowers and will grow several times during the summer if grazed down. One problem that alfalfa can cause though is bloat in animals, which is when the stomach becomes overstretched by excess gas content and if not caught and treated quickly the animal will usually die. So to prevent this cows in alfalfa pastures get seven way mineral which contains vitamins and minerals that prevent bloat.
These supplements are very important to a cows diet, especially during summer pasture and when lactating milk to raise their calves. So, it is very important to make sure that they have a constant supply of salt and mineral. And luckily the cattle absolutely love the stuff, it is usually a mad dash when giving them mineral to get to the tub first!

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