Just wondering what everyone does for their cattle nutrition. My husband is the one who decides most of what our cattle get.
We use mineral, lick tubs, silage and hay with our herd. We also worm and vaccinate our cattle to keep them as healthy as possible.
Anyone feed distiller's grain? I heard it helps weanlings gain weight and reduces hay belly.
Please comment, I am interested in what others have to say.
Ethanol co-products are fantastic feed. It is important to know what the nutrient make up of the feed is. No 2 plants produce the same feed. When feeding co-products it is important to change your mineral program.....co-products are high in Phosporus which is an expensive part of most mineral programs. There are good low phos/co-product minerals out there.
We have gotten along great feeding syrup and MWDG from local ethanol plants to both our cows and weaned calves. A person needs to be careful if starting calves on wet feed.
I sell mineral, but that aside, I think a 365 day mineral program is imperative in a cow calf operation. I don't care what brand as long as cows have access to mineral all year long.
I agree Brady, it is important to have a year round mineral program.
Cows get all the hay and minerals they will eat when not on pasture. Bred heifers and weaned heifer calves get free choice hay, mineral, an ionophore(heifer calves) and some corn silage. If a cow can't get all her energy requirements from hay then I believe she has no business being in a cow herd unless she has twins.
Yes the nutrition consultant we had test our hay and corn silage had said cows don't really need the silage, just the weanlings and heifers. But that's when you also stress that the hay has to have the proper nutritional values a cow requires, not just any old hay, the hay field needs to be maintained for such quality.
Ditto on not just any old hay. My dad growing up on a dairy farm thought you could just feed any old hay to beef animals and they would be fine. Learned the hard way that won't work.
Terry and Kari: I have been successfully feeding alfalfa hay, corn silage and corn grain to my Jersey steers for about 7 years now. Cattle may not need corn silage if the remainder of the diet meets their nutritional requirements...if the requirements are not met, then there must be more ingredients added to their diet.
Corn silage can be an excellent feedstuff if it is made properly and it is in good condition at the time of feeding. Plus is should be supplemented with protein (corn is low in protein content)
I have also fed dry and wet distillers grains. Yes, there are pre-cautions to take when feeding distillers but they can safely be included up to about 20% of the ration dry matter...more or less...depending on the rest of the ration ingredients and the state of nutrition of the cattle. A watch-out when feeding distillers is sulphur content of the ration.
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My cows graze corn stalk fields, a little rye grass, and stockpiled fescue. I try to get this to stretch through the first of the year or beyond. I supllement gluten with this, as well as free choice mineral. FEscue grass hay becomes thier main roughage as the grazing goes down. They continue to get gluten to keep the energy and protien at proper levels.