Preparing for summer feeding

23 August 2023

Preparing for summer feeding

Summer feeding may seem to end some years, and the next day the pastures are gone from the paddock, forcing you to begin feeding once more. But the days when feeding during was a long tedious job are long gone. It has gotten much better with the advanement of technology (such of the Haymate) and the growing understanding of animal health.

So here are my top 5 suggestions for being ready for summer feeding.

1: Feed Tests!

Understanding what you are feeding your livestock. Make sure the hay you are feeding wont be sending your stock backwards. The key factors to look at in your test are Digestibility, Protein, Metabolisable Energy and Fibre. There is plenty of help available to assist you in understanding your results.

2: Timing!

Don't start feeding too late in the season. It is a lot easier to maintain weight on livestock than what it is to put weight on. To maintain the weight of a 60kg ewe she needs 9 MJ/ME per day. To increase weight you may be looking at more like 20-25 MJ/ME per day. This also comes back to feed tests and why they are so important.

3: Water!

Clean water with good access. Ruminant digestion is dependent on water. I could go into great detail about the value of water, but no one would continue reading. The fundamental factor is that water is necessary for nutrition delivery and digestion. Therefore, if the water source is contaminated and the animals aren't drinking enough, it can seriously affect digestion.

4: Mineral Supplements!

Dry feed is often lacking in certain vitamins and minerals, a good quality dry feed mineral block or loose lick will help rectify the imbalances and allow your livestock to get the most out of your hay.

5: Heat Stress!

Consider your biggest paddock. How far is the paddock's furthest point from the water? Your stock will be more productive if fed near water and during the cooler parts of the day, because the wont have to spend as much energy searching the paddock for hay.

But the most important factor is YOU!

What will happen to your livestock if you or someone of your farm is injured while feeding hay, or if the process takes so long that you can only give your stock half of what they require? The Haymate will significantly speed up the process of feeding livestock while also making it simpler and safer.

So be prepared and stay safe this summer.


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