How the age at which a cow reaches maturity influences productivity

Products
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Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
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Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
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Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
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Condition Lick
Master 20
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Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
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Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
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Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
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Wool Sheep Lick 28
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Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
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Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

How the age at which a cow reaches maturity influences productivity

Dr Vlok Ferreira, National Technical Manager – Ruminants, of RCL Foods, Molatek and Epol, attended the Agri-Expo on Friday the 12th of October to present a talk on “Factors that influence cow productivity”. He discussed the importance of understanding cow productivity, highlighting that in beef cattle, productivity can be measured as kg per calf weaned; per large stock unit mated. (KgC/LSU). Dr Ferreira also noted that implementing an effective replacement heifer program may be a big challenge for beef cattle farmers, and is a challenge that needs to be addressed.

 

The topics that were covered include:

 

  1. Heritable traits that can influence cow productivity
  2. How improving cow productivity reduces environmental impact
  3. How the age at which a cow reaches maturity influences productivity
  4. Effect of body weight and body condition on conception rate

 

Here we discuss reaching sexual maturity at the right age, and what effects it will have on productivity, as well as factors that influence it. The age at which cows become sexually mature is very important when accounting for productivity, as we want them to calf as close to 2 years of age as possible.

Age at which puberty is reached

Age, weight and breed all have an impact on the age at which a heifer will reach puberty.

 

Age: The goal of many producers is to have heifers calf for the first time at 2 years of age. For this to happen, the heifer should reach puberty at 12 – 15 months of age. This will also depend on the breed of the cow. European breeds reach puberty at the age of 12 months, where breeds in South Africa generally reach puberty at the age of 14 – 15 months.

 

Weight: Weight is the factor that most influences puberty, and a heifer will reach puberty when she weighs 65-70% of her potential mature weight.

 

Breed: Larger, late maturing breeds will reach puberty at a later stage than early maturing breeds, and will generally have a calving age of 27 months rather than 24 months. The average weight will differ for each breed.

 

Heifer breeding weight as a result of breed

 


Breed

Mature Weight

Minimum Weight

Bonsmara

429 kg

320 kg

Beefmaster

498 kg

324 kg

Brangus

465 kg

302 kg

Simbra

534 kg

347 kg

Charolais

590 kg

383 kg

Nguni

365 kg

237 kg

Santa Getrudis

489 kg

318 kg

Age at first heat

Heifers need to have an average daily gain of 800g/day from weaning to first service, or have a total gain of 115-160 kg during the first winter — approximately 200 days.

For most breeds this means that the cross-breed heifers need to weigh between 295 and 385 kg.

 

Age of 1st heat cycle on 2 levels of weight gain

 

360 g/day gain 12 months old 13 months old 14 months old 15 months old

Angus

0

0

33

82

Hereford

11

22

33

38

Crossbreed

0

12

68

85

 

 

730 g/day gain 12 months old 13 months old 14 months old 15 months old

Angus

30 

58

100

100

Hereford

12

50

100

100

Crossbreed

18

76

94

94

 

The above tables indicate the ages from 12 to 15 months, the average daily gain, and the resulting percentage of heifers from Angus breed, Hereford breed, and the Angus-Hereford cross-breed progeny that reached their first heat cycle. It is important to note that crossbreeds will reach maturity at an earlier age than either of the parent breeds.

 

The conclusion that we can draw from these two tables is that heifers who have a greater daily gain will reach maturity at a younger age than heifers who do not have a sufficient enough daily gain.

 

Age at 1st calving

Heifers that calve at the age of 2 years and then calve every following year, will produce 330 kg more weaned calf weight than if they calved for the first time at 3 years of age over a lifetime basis.

 

The main conclusion that we can draw from the above discussion is that cows should reach an optimal weight in order to reach puberty in a timely manner, but that breed effects will have a large influence in what this weight should be. Crossbreeds are optimal in this case as they reach puberty faster than parental breeds.

 

The last fact that we can draw from this is that a cow that calves for the first time at the age of 2 years will have an increased productivity of 330 kg weaned calf weight than if she calves at a later age.

 

For more information visit our Epol or Molatek websites or contact Dr Vlok Ferreira at Vlok.Ferreira@rclfoods.com

 

Read part 4 (Effect of body weight and body condition on conception rate) here.

How improving cow productivity reduces environmental impact

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

How improving cow productivity reduces environmental impact

 

The differences in cow productivity of the Afrikaner breed is examined from 1980 to 2013 (Jordaan 2015)

 

Dr Vlok Ferreira, National Technical Manager – Ruminants, of RCL Foods, Molatek and Epol, attended the Agri-Expo on Friday the 12th of October to present a talk on “Factors that influence cow productivity”. He discussed the importance of understanding cow productivity; highlighting that in beef cattle productivity can be measured as kg per calf weaned per large stock unit mated (KgC/LSU). Dr Ferreira also noted that implementing an effective replacement heifer program may be a big challenge for beef cattle farmers, and is a challenge that needs to be addressed.

 

The topics that were covered include:

 

  1. Heritable traits that can influence cow productivity
  2. How improving cow productivity reduces environmental impact
  3. How the age at which cows reach maturity influence productivity
  4. Effect of body weight and body condition on conception rate

 

In this article we discuss how the productivity of the Afrikaner beef-breed improved from 1980 to 2013, and how these changes were achieved.

 

The aim of the evaluation was to investigate the effect of cow productivity and the different components that influence cow productivity (weaning weight, weight of the cow, and inter-calving period) have on the environment.

 

Definition of LSU ( Large Stock Unit)

The equivalent of an ox with a weight of 450 kg, that has a daily gain of 0.5 kg/day whilst on grazing, and that has a digestive energy of 55% and 9 kg intake of grazing a day.

 

In South Africa the enteric methane emissions factor (MEFenteric) of one LSU is 94 kg methane/year.

Material and Methods

The relative contribution of the 3 components (weaning weight, cow weight and inter-calving period) to cow productivity and the resulting environmental impact is investigated. This was managed by changing one of the three factors by 5% while keeping the other two factors constant.

Results

The cow productivity of Afrikaner cattle measured in 1980 was 94 kg weaned calf per LSU mated, with the MEFenteric of a LSU measured at 94 kg methane per year.
The resultant conclusion: MEFenteric = 1 kg of methane produced per kg calf weaned/LSU mated.
In other words, every kg of weight on a weaned calf per LSU mated, resulted in 1 kg of methane being produced.

 

The cow productivity for Afrikaner cattle measured in 2013 was 107 kg weaned calf per LSU mated, with MEFenteric of 0.88 kg methane per kg calf weaned per LSU mated.
In other words, every kg of weight on a weaned calf per LSU mated, resulted in 0.88 kg of methane being produced.

 


Trait

% Change in Trait

% Change in Cow Productivity

% Change in MEFenteric

Calf Weaning Weight

+5%

+5.3%

-3.5%

Cow Weight

+5%

-4.0%

+2.6%

ICP

-5%

+7.3%

-4.8%

 

The genetic improvement of the Afrikaner cows in this investigation showed a decreased cow weight, a 20 day decrease in the intercalving period and a 20 kg increase in weaning weight.
This improvement of the productivity of Afrikaner cows decreased the carbon footprint by 12%, between 1980 and 2003.

 

This is comparable to another investigation conducted by Capper (2011), indicating that beef cattle in the USA had a decrease of 16% in their carbon footprint from 1977 to 2007.

 

The importance of improving the calving percentage of national herds by about 62 – 65% is illustrated by the relatively large environmental impact that fertility has, when looking at intercalving-period as a measurement.

 

 

The relatively large positive environmental impact of an increase in fertility (as reflected by ICP) illustrates how important it is to increase the relatively low calving percentage of the national beef herd ( ~ 62 – 65 %).

 

A higher weaning weight, a higher weaning percentage and a lower inter-calving period decreased negative effects on the environment, and this is what beef cattle producers should be aiming for, with optimal cow productivity in mind.

 

Notable result: When the inter-calving period was decreased by 5%, overall cow productivity improved with 7.3 percent.

 

What this means is that more calves are weaned, and that inter-calving should be decreased as much as possible in order to experience the largest effect, resulting in highest productivity and highest output.

 

For more information visit our Epol or Molatek websites or contact Dr Vlok Ferreira at Vlok.Ferreira@rclfoods.com

 

Read part 3 (How the age at which cows reach maturity influences productivity) here.

Factors that Influence Cow Productivity

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

Factors that influence the productivity of beef cows

 

Dr Vlok Ferreira, National Technical Manager – Ruminants, of RCL Foods, Molatek and Epol, attended the Agri-Expo on Friday the 12th of October to present a talk on “Factors that influence cow productivity”. He discussed the importance of understanding cow productivity; highlighting that in beef cattle productivity can be measured as kg per calf weaned per large stock unit mated (KgC/LSU). Dr Ferreira also noted that implementing an effective replacement heifer program may be a big challenge for beef cattle farmers, and is a challenge that needs to be addressed.

 

The topics that were covered include:

 

  1. Heritable traits that can influence cow productivity
  2. How improving cow productivity reduces environmental impact
  3. How the age at which cows reach maturity influences productivity
  4. Effect of body weight and body condition on conception rate

 

The Heritable traits that can influence cow productivity:

 

  1. Weaning weight of the calf
  2. Feed requirements of the cow-calf combination (per LSU- Large Stock Unit)
  3. The rate at which calves are born (indicated by means of inter-calving period – ICP)

 

How to Calculate Calving percentage and Cow Productivity:

 

Calf % = 100 – ((Inter-calf Period – 365 days)/365 X 100)

 

Example:
Inter-calf period: 420 days

 

Calf % = 100 – ((410 – 365)/365 X 100)
= 84.9%

 

Cow productivity = (Weaning % X weaning weight at 205 days)/LSU [we assume that the calving percentage is equal to the weaning percentage]

 

Example:

Weaning weight at 205 days: 210 kg
Cow productivity = 0.849 X 210/1.45 LSU
=123 kg

Easing the shock of weaning

Removing the calf from its mother is a necessary procedure, but also one that unfortunately lowers the productivity of the calf. For the first 14 days after weaning, the calf will likely experience a drop in body weight due to stress and lack of eating, if the weaning process is not properly managed.

 

For this reason Dr Vlok Ferreira suggests the use of a creep feed, to ease the weaning shock. Creep feed is a way of introducing feed to the calf whilst it is still suckling. Getting used to eat out of a feed trough before being weaned is one way to ensure that body weight is maintained during the weaning process, as the calf will already be used to eating feed.

You can find the Epol Calf Starter creep feed product here, and the Molatek Creep Feed product here.

Conclusion

  1. The environmental impact of producing beef cattle can be decreased
  2. The results emphasise the importance of focusing on
    1. Fertility
    2. Identifying the reasons for low calving percentage, such as age at first calving; body condition score (BCS) and lick supplementation practices

 

For more information visit our Epol or Molatek websites or contact Dr Vlok Ferreira at Vlok.Ferreira@rclfoods.com

 

Read part 2 (How improving cow productivity reduces environmental impact) here.

Is your livestock getting enough Bypass Protein?

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

Is your livestock getting enough Bypass Protein?

Sufficient bypass protein is crucial to maintaining and improving the performance and reproduction of all livestock. In this article we will highlight the importance thereof in the diets of cattle, sheep and goats.

 

The protein in a ruminant diet can be divided into two parts, a larger part that is digested in the rumen, and a smaller part that is not. It is the smaller part that we are concerned with when we refer to bypass protein. This is the protein that bypasses the rumen and enters the lower digestive tract – the small intestine.

 

In ruminant nutrition we can divide dietary protein into RDP and UDP:

  • RDP (Rumen Degradable Protein): Most of the protein in feed falls into this category. It is the protein that can be degraded and utilised by the rumen microbes.
  • UDP (Undegradable Dietary Protein): The smaller part, that can also be referred to as rumen escape protein, escapes being degraded by the rumen microbes and passes into the small intestine of the digestive tract.

 

In the small intestine, the nutrients are processed in much the same way as it would be in the stomach of a monogastric animal. Enzymatic digestion takes place and bypass protein is absorbed as amino acids.

The protein that gets degraded in the rumen by the rumen microbes is partly utilised for microbial protein synthesis. The rest is excreted through urine.

Why is bypass protein important?

The amino acids that the animal is able to utilise comes from two sources, namely microbial protein and bypass protein. In fast-growing and high-yield animals, the amount of essential amino acids available to the animal from a microbial source is not sufficient.

Amino acids are directly related to traits like wool growth, muscle growth and milk production, among other. By feeding bypass protein, the diet of the animal is supplemented, ensuring that these essential amino acid requirements are met. This helps to improve growth rate, as well as the overall production of the animal.

 

About Molatek’s Bypass Protein:

  • It is a urea-free protein source
  • A combination of four protein sources are used
  • Molatek’s Bypass Protein is specifically formulated to meet the essential amino acid requirements of ruminants
  • The bypass protein sources complement that of microbial protein to ensure that deficiencies do not develop
  • Cattle and sheep in intensive farming systems, like feedlots, benefit greatly from bypass protein supplementation and show an increase in production

The application of Molatek Bypass Protein can be found here.

Click here to find your nearest Technical Adviser.

The Importance of Proper Drought Supplementation

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

Importance of proper Drought Supplementation:

Despite the fact that South Africa boasts dams that are significantly fuller compared to this time last year, the threat of drought is something that every farmer dreads. With an average annual rainfall of 450 mm, South Africa is an arid region prone to droughts, which many South Africans seem to forget.

 

Proper drought supplementation of animals grazing in drought-stricken areas is of the highest importance, to minimise animal loss and the loss of condition of grazing animals as much as possible. Veld quality is compromised during periods of drought and may have a number of consequences such as protein shortages, energy shortages as well as mineral deficiencies.

What to supplement your livestock with:

Apart from the sheer bulk of food that animals need to consume every day, there is also a nutritional aspect that the grazing needs to comply with. It is easy for ruminants to develop digestive imbalances and for this reason we suggest Molatek’s drought supplement.
The drought supplement is specifically designed to provide a balanced supplement. It is important to note that the amount of roughage available and the quality thereof will influence the level of supplementation. A technical advisor in your area will be able to assist you with this. Click here to find your nearest technical adviser.

The advantages of feeding Molatek Drought Supplement:

  • It is highly palatable and stimulates dry matter intake
  • The drought supplement ensures that the energy and protein needs of an animal are met during times of drought
  • Ruminal fermentation by rumen microbes is improved and the animal is able to optimise the urea as a source of protein
  • Drought supplement prevents the development of dry gall sickness

It should be noted that this supplementation shows an increase in results as the quality of the veld gets improves.

When to start feeding:

It is best to start supplementing the diet of grazing animals before they lose too much body condition, or lose proper function of the gut. It is a good practice to adapt the animals slowly to a new diet, especially one that contains urea, as the rumen microbes will also have to adapt.

Which animals to feed

A hierarchy is established during drought periods and this needs to be upheld to ensure minimum loss. Prioritise animals that are the most productive and will suffer the most from being underfed.
Here is a guideline to determine which animals should get preference:

 

  1. Lactating and pregnant females
  2. Replacement animals (young ewes and heifers) that are expensive to replace
  3. Mature and dry animals
  4. Young steers
  5. Old and infertile animals should be sold as early as possible

When to stop supplementation:

It is important to remember that it takes time for the veld to be restored to its optimal condition and young, green veld that grows after rain is low in energy. For this reason we recommend a continued supplementation following the rains. Please contact your technical advisor for more information. Click here to find your nearest technical advisor.

What is Non-Protein Nitrogen?

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

What is Non-Protein Nitrogen (NPN)?

Guaranteed that if you handle animal feed on a regular basis you will have seen the letters NPN on the packaging. NPN stands for Non-Protein Nitrogen, so what do you need to know about it?

Where does NPN come from?

Feed-grade urea is most commonly used as a source of NPN, but other sources are also available. Ammonium sulphate, ammonium chloride and mono-ammonium phosphate are among other sourecs of NPN. Molatek, uses only feed-grade urea.

Why is NPN included in animal feed?

Non-ruminants like humans, pigs and poultry can only utilise amino acids from natural protein sources like soya bean oilcake and cottonseed oilcake. On the other hand, ruminants like cattle, sheep and goats can utilise non-protein nitrogen sources thanks to ruminal microbes. These are microbes like protozoa and bacteria found in the rumen of the animal that can use NPN to synthesise protein. This is fortunate for the animal because it means that a portion of their diet doesn’t have to come from a natural protein source – their rumen microbes make it for them.

 

 

NPN is included in feed because it is more economical than feeding natural protein. NPN has been added to ruminal feeds for years and is not harmful to the animal as long as it is carefully managed.

Why is there a warning on the label?

Careful management of NPN is essential to ensure that urea toxicity does not occur. When too much urea is eaten by a ruminant, ammonia is produced by the rumen microbes and results in hyperammonemia, also known as urea poisoning, if absorbed.

Always be sure to follow the guidelines according to the feed manufacturer’s feeding recommendations and be sure to store fertilisers and NPN containing feeds safely away from ruminants.

Supplementing for your veld type

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

Do you know how to supplement for your veld type?

Farmer or producers that use natural grazing as the bulk of the feed source for their animals need to understand the type of veld that they are working with, and what nutritional value it has for their animals.

In South Africa we have three types of veld, namely

  • Sweetveld
  • Sourveld
  • Mixedveld (combination of sweetveld and sourveld)

Sweetveld

Sweetveld is found in areas of low rainfall and the nutritional value of the veld is retained through maturity. It is also highly palatable to grazing animals.

 

Possible problems:

Because sweetveld occurs in areas of low rainfall, droughts are bound to occur and may result in fodder shortages. The result is that animals do not have access to enough grazing material.

 

Solution:

It is also common for mineral shortages to occur during summer and protein shortages during winter, for this reason we recommend a Molatek Foslick (V16059), and Molatek Fosblock (V22502 in summer or a good quality protein lick (V16048) during winter of which Molatek has many to offer. Contact your technical advisor for advice as to which would suit your animals best, to ensure that no nutritional deficiencies develop.

 

Sourveld

Sourveld is found in areas of high rainfall and loses some of its nutritional value throughout maturity. Sourveld is only palatable during the growing season.

 

Possible problems:

During winter the protein content of the veld decreases as well as the digestibility. This means that although the grazing material is readily available, the animals do not want to graze on the veld.

 

Solution:

Animals on sourveld are bound to lose condition during the winter and strategies should be put in place to ensure that body condition is conserved. It is good practice to supplement a protein lick like Molatek Winlick 50 ( V12086) Contact your Molatek technical advisor for guidance as to which would suit your animals best.

It is important to know what sort of veld you are using, in order to best supplement the diet of your herd or flock, should a shortage of grazing material arise.

 

Here is a rough guideline for the provinces and their veld types:

Western Cape: Sweetveld
Eastern Cape: Western region – Sweetveld
Eastern region- Sourveld
KZN: Sourveld, mixed veld and sweetveld
Mpumalanga: Sourveld
Limpopo: Mixed veld
Gauteng: Sourveld
North West: Western region – Sweetveld
Eastern region – Mixed veld
Free State: Western region – Sweetveld
Eastern region – Mixed veld and sourveld
Northern Cape: Sweetveld

What to know about molasses meal

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

The benefits of feeding Molatek Molasses and Molatek Molasses meal:

Molatek molasses is the by-product of the sugar-making process in the form of a thick, sweet syrup. Usually this by-product comes from sugar cane or sugar beets and is used in animal feeds at low levels. These levels are about 20-25% of feedlot cattle diets and 15% of feedlot sheep diets. Molatek molasses may also be fed to horses, dairy cows and young animals as a supplement.

Nutritional advantages of feeding Molatek molasses meal to livestock

  • It is high in easily digestible energy and unlike refined sugar, has a higher nutritional value.
    • Increasing nutrient density in feed of pregnant cattle is important when voluntary feed intake is reduced before calving
    • Promotes growth and development of young stock
    • Prevents pregnancy toxemia in sheep and goats
  •  Minerals like calcium, copper and iron are found in Molatek molasses meal, along with trace elements that are vital to the health of your livestock. Certain B-vitamins can also be found in molasses meal.
    • Promotes animal health by combating certain nutritional deficiencies
  • Drought-feeding strategies often use a mix of Molatek molasses and urea as a way to increase feed intake of animals on low quality veld which helps to maintain body condition and appetite. Intake of complete feeds is also increased since livestock find Molatek molasses meal highly palatable.

Other advantages of Molatek molasses meal:

  • Molatek molasses meal has the added advantage of binding dustiness and minimises the loss of small feed particles to the wind.
  • Reduced feed waste
  • Part of the grain component can be replaced with Molatek molasses meal as an energy source in self-mixed concentrates, as well as in complete feeds and licks
  • Reduces ability of selective feeding in goats, sheep and horses
  • Molatek molasses meal may increase milk yield

Higher levels of molasses may be used in animal feeds, but care should be taken when doing so as livestock may develop nutritional conditions.

There are 3 main nutritional diseases associated with over-feeding molasses, namely molasses toxicity, urea toxicity and bloat/acidosis.

See the Molatek Molasses Meal guidelines here

What to know about creep feed

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

What to know about creep feed

What is creep feed?

Creep feeding is a way to supplement the diet of young livestock, like calves and lambs, by offering feed even though they are still suckling.

Why creep feed?

The main reason for creep feeding is to ensure growth even when milk production of the mother is decreased, but there are other benefits as well:

    • Supplying creep feed decreases the stress of the weaning process, as the animals are already used to eating solid feed and helps with early weaning of the young.
    • Creep feeding is particularly helpful when it comes to mothers nursing two or more young, as the competition between siblings is alleviated. Multiple lambs should receive extra nutrition on the side, so that they do not lose body condition.
    • Creep fed lambs have a greater daily gain in weight as the supplementation is of high nutritional quality and is well utilised by growing animals.
    • The young will reach a target market weight at an earlier age, due to an increase in the Feed Conversion Ratio
    • Conception rate of the mother is improved if her young is weaned early as she is able to better absorb and utilise nutrients and will have a higher body condition. A better body condition leads to increased reproductive functions.

When should creep feed be fed?

With calves creep feed can be introduced as early as three days after birth, and with lambs it can be introduced 14 days after birth. The reason for introducing creep feed at such an early age is to stimulate rumen development which leads to faster growth at a younger age.

Creep feed characteristics:

Creep feed should have specific characteristics which can also be found in Molatek’s sheep fattening concentrate/calf concentrate. Characteristics include:

    • Being highly palatable to stimulate feeding, this can be accomplished by adding molasses to the feed.
    • Having a good feed texture
    • Having a high nutritional quality
    • Having a high protein quality
    • Having a high energy content
    • Containing lucerne hay or a good quality grain

Lekaanvullings in die wintermaande – Dr. Vlok Ferreira

Products
Energy
Molasses Meal
Natural Protein Concentrate
Bypass
Fattening
Beef Fat 33+
Feedlot Concentrate
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Dairy
Dairy Master Concentrate
Pro 16
Sheep Fattening/Calf Concentrate
Cattle and Sheep Maintenance and Production Lick Mixtures
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Foslick
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Production Supplements, Energy, Finishing and Rearing on Green Pastures
Background 18
Elite Block
Lamb And Ewe Lick
Master 20
Cattle, Sheep and Game Maintenance and Production Blocks
Enerblock
Fosblock
Multi Block 28
Trophy Block
Winter Block 40
Drought Feed
Drought Supplement
Farming Practices
Cattle
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Backgrounding: Feedlot Preparation
Dry Pasture
Green Pastures
Cows On Dry Winterveld And Crop Residues: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Dryveld 46
Lick Mix 87
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Block 40
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late Summer Pasture: Transition Licks
Condition Lick
Lick Mix 87
Multi Block 28
Winter Veld Concentrate
Late-Pregnant Cows At The End Of Winter: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Preparation Of Bulls: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Dry Winter Veld: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Lick Mix 87
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Protein Lick 40
Winlick 50
Winter Veld Concentrate
Rearing Of Weaner Calves On Green Summer Veld: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Master 20
Summer Green Pasture: Maintenance Lick
Fosblock
Foslick
Sheep
Feedlot Finishing: Complete Feeds And Cafeteria Diets
Adaptation Diets
Finishing Diets
Early And Mid Pregnancy: Maintenance Licks
Condition Lick
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Finishing On Pasture: Production Supplement
Green Pasture
Flush Feed: Production Licks
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Late Pregnancy And Early Lactation: Production Licks
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Preparation Of Rams: Auctions And Shows
Cafeteria Diets
Complete Feeds
Rearing Of Young Ewes And Rams: Production Licks
Background 18
Condition Lick
Enerblock
Master 20
Multi Block 28
Wool Master Concentrate
Wool Sheep Lick 28
Dairy Cattle
Dairy Cows: Lactating And Dry Cows
Dairy Meal Mixtures
Dry Cow Mixtures
Rearing Of Dairy Heifers: Day 1 To Steam-Up
Calf Grower Diet
Calf Starter Diet
Heifer Mixed Concentrate
Game
Lick Supplements: Maintenance Licks
Dry Pasture
Green Pasture
Feed Trough, Creep Feed Pen Measurements

’n Lekaanvulling in die wintermaande sal die boer op lang termyn help om geld te bespaar én om gesonder diere aan die einde van elke teeltyd te lewer.

Lekaanvullings bied nie net ekonomiese voordele nie, maar dra ook by tot goeie voeding.

Die geld wat in aanvullende voeding belê word, verdien dividende deur verhoogde besettingspersentasies, asook gesonder en swaarder kalwers met speentyd. Verse se besettingspersentasies en die ouderdom met hul eerste kalf hou groot ekonomiese voordele in.

Dit is belangrik dat koeie so gou moontlik dragtig raak. Vir elke siklus van 21 dae wat dit langer duur voordat die koei dragtig is, sal die kalwers met speentyd 15 kg minder weeg. Koeie het dan ook ’n langer hersteltyd voordat hulle weer kalf, wat voordelig is vir liggaamskondisie en melkproduksie ná kalftyd.

Winterlek

In die wintermaande in die somer­reëngebiede is die verteerbaarheid van weidings swak en die proteïeninhoud daarvan is baie laag – 3% in suurveld en 6% in soetveld. Molatek se Kondisielek (reg.nr. V17730, Wet 36 van 1947) is só geformuleer dat verse en eerstekalfkoeie voldoende weiding kan inneem om nie slegs in hul onderhoudsbehoefte te voorsien nie, maar ook groei en kondisie te kan handhaaf.Die doel van ’n winterlek is dat diere minstens 150-200 g proteïen per dag deur middel van die lek inneem. Die inname van baie winterlekke is by jong diere egter te laag om dié doelwit te bereik. Die kombinasie van maklik verteerbare energie in die vorm van melasse met die proteïen om te verseker dat die proteïen doeltreffend deur die mikrobes in die rumen benut kan word. Dit dra ook by tot ’n smaaklike lek wat voldoende inname sal verseker.

’n Winterlek word ook aanbeveel by mieliereste. Tydens veral die eerste twee tot drie weke ná oestyd is ’n redelike hoeveelheid mielies op die land beskikbaar, maar een van die probleme met baie winterlekke is dat die inname daarvan te laag is.

Die smaaklikheid van die winterlek is ’n belangrike voordeel. Dit is noodsaaklik dat die vers en eerstekalfkoei die korrekte kondisie bereik. Dit sal verseker dat sy suksesvol gedek word. Sonder die korrekte kondisie en gewig is dit ’n regstreekse verlies van ’n kalf en die koste om die dier nog ’n jaar op die plaas te moet dra.

Verliese

Voorkom lae kalfpersentasies by die koeie deur voldoende fosfaat in die somer te gee met Foslek (reg.nr. V16059) of Fosblock (reg.nr. V22502) teen 120-240 g per bees per dag. Verse moet ’n maand voor die res van die kudde reeds by die bulle gesit word sodat hulle ’n langer hersteltyd sal hê voor die tweede dekking. Gee Kondisielek teen 600-800 gper bees per dag in die wintermaande. Innames sal wissel na gelang van die koei se gewig en die hoeveelheid en soort gehalteweiding wat beskikbaar is. Gee Proteïenlek (reg.nr. V16048) teen 400-500 g per bees per dag as onderhoudslek. Meng dit met graan om ’n produksielek te maak. Meng 150 kg Proteïenlek en 100 kg mielies en verskaf 1-1,5 kg per bees per dag.

Voordele van lekaanvullings op droë weidings

Lekaanvullings stimuleer die eetlus van diere sodat hulle meer droë­materiaal inneem.Dit stimuleer die vertering van swak ruvoer en weiding. Die produkte bevat proteïen wat die fermentasieproses deur mikro-organismes in die grootpens aanhelp.Dit bevat nie-proteïen­stikstof. Dit help om die dier se eetlus te verbeter en vervul ’n belangrike funksie om bevrugting te verhoog.Dit verbeter die prestasie van beeste op droë weidings en handhaaf of verbeter liggaamsgewig. Dit lei tot verhoogde kalfpersentasies en korter tussenkalfperiodes, en swaarder speengewigte by die kalwers.Dit het lakserende eienskappe, wat droë galsiek help voorkom.

Nie net hou ’n lekaanvulling ekonomiese voordele vir die boer in nie, maar vanuit ’n voedingsoogpunt vind alle beeste in die wintermaande daarby baat. Foto: Gerrit Bezuidenhout

Dr. Vlok Ferreira is nasionale tegniese bestuurder van herkouers by RCL Foods.

NAVRAE: Molatek se hoofkantoor, tel. 013 791 1036

Klik hier om die oorspronklike Landbouweekblad artikel af te laai.