Here we count down the top 10 nutrition articles that made dairy headlines in 2019:
“If we find ourselves chopping in near freezing temps, then the ensiled feed will ferment slowly, or not at all,” says John Goeser, director of nutritional research and innovation with Rock River Laboratories. “We could find ourselves feeding green corn silage well into next year, until temps warm to the point that the fermentation process can get going.”
A beef calf typically nurses its dam for 6 to 8 months, while most dairy calves receive a liquid ration for just 6 to 8 weeks. One of the nutritional challenges of this contrasting scenario is delivering optimal levels of fat to dairy calves.
While it is possible to wean calves from milk-based rations at as early as 6 weeks of age, University of Guelph calf researcher Michael Steele says it’s not optimal. Steele, whose primary research focus is calf nutrition and digestive function, recommends a weaning age of at least 8 weeks. “Six-week-old calves just can’t consume enough calories to optimize the milk-feeding stage and prepare digestively for the transition to a ration of solely dry feed,” he said.
Dairy producers have seen the benefits of strong demand for higher-fat dairy products through better prices for butterfat in their milk checks. Even though milk prices are beginning to rebound, you can’t afford to have a herd with a low fat test. You need to do what it takes to help cows produce as much high-fat milk as possible. That’s why Soaring Eagle Dairy switched up their ration.
Imagine receiving the call that your feed mill has shut their doors for good. On top of that, imagine that you only have enough grain on hand to feed your animals for one week. Are you anxious yet? We were.