Beef Tips

Tag: feedstuffs

Forage analysis: What Numbers Do I Need

By Justin Waggoner, Beef Systems Specialist

One the more common questions I receive with regard to analytical testing of forages and other feedstuffs is, “I have the sample, now what do I test for or what analysis package should I select?”

The basic components that nutritionists need to evaluate a feedstuff or develop a ration are dry matter or moisture, crude protein, an estimate of the energy content of the feedstuff — Total Digestible Nutrients (TDN), Net Energy for Maintenance (NEm), Net Energy for gain (NEg), and the macro minerals, Calcium and Phosphorous. These are the most basic numbers that are required but including some additional analyses in the report can give us additional insight into the quality of the feedstuff or improve our ability to predict animal performance, which is the primary reason we analyze feedstuffs.

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Feeding Corn to Cows this Winter

by Chris Reinhardt, feedlot specialist

Although some areas received abundant rain this summer and have ample hay supplies, other regions received only marginal rains, resulting in a marginal hay crop. On the other hand, most of the corn-growing regions of the Midwest and High Plains had excellent growing conditions which have contributed to abundant grain supplies, resulting in relatively low corn prices this fall.

This combination of coinciding circumstances has raised the question, “Can I feed corn to cows instead of hay?” Well, the answer is an emphatic, “Yes”, but with caveats. Continue reading “Feeding Corn to Cows this Winter”

Managing Feed Intake of Weaned Calves

weanedcalvesby Justin W. Waggoner, beef systems specialist

 

Weaning is just around the corner for many spring-calving operations. The process of weaning calves essentially has 3 primary components: 1) maternal separation 2) moving to a new environment with a new social structure and 3) becoming accustomed to new, unfamiliar feedstuffs. How we manage all of these sources of stress or components of the weaning process ultimately impacts calf health and performance. However, one of the most critical elements of a successful weaning program is getting calves to consume feed. The first step in managing feed intake of calves is getting them to the bunk.

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