3 Cattle Mineral Tips for You this Summer
If there’s one thing that you as a cattle owner need to pay attention to, it would be your cattle’s mineral intake, particularly during spring or fall. However, just because cattle need a lot of minerals during these two seasons doesn’t mean you can simply neglect your animals’ mineral needs during the summer. If anything, it is important that you ensure they do not suffer from mineral deficiency, since cattle usually breed during the summer.
Now that summer has arrived, here are some cattle mineral tips to help you keep your cattle well-supplemented and healthy all year-long:
Tip # 1: Know what minerals your cattle need
There are plenty of cattle mineral supplements to choose from, but you have to be careful when choosing which supplements to feed your cattle. It is also important that you know the right feeding rate for your animals, otherwise you might end up just losing out on money.
But how exactly do you identify which minerals your cattle need?
The trick is in knowing the type of minerals that are naturally available in the area where your cattle graze. There are regional mixes available for different areas of the country. You could also have your pastures tested to identify which minerals are lacking or in low supply. Remember, the purpose for mineral supplementation is just filling in the gaps, so knowing which minerals are missing in your cattle’s diet is key to feeding them with the right type of cattle minerals.
During the summer, most pastures lack the mineral Phosphorus, which is key to your cattle’s milk production and fertility. This is the reason why cattle with Phosphorus deficiency have breeding problems, including reduced conception rates. In this case, it is best to feed your cattle with a mineral supplement that would address their dietary requirements.
You might also want to consider feeding your cattle and/or horses minerals with an insect growth regulator (IGR) product such as Clarifly or Altosid. These products disrupt the insect life cycle, helping you keep flies under control. If you plan to use a feed-through fly control, it’s important that you start feeding the product early, about 30 days before flies emerge in the spring. This will ensure that when they do show up, the manure already contains the IGR. Flies are not only a nuisance, but they can spread diseases like pinkeye from cow to cow and cost you money in lower daily gains due to all the stomping and tail swishing needed to keep the flies at bay.
Tip # 2: See to it that your cattle receive sufficient mineral supplementation
Knowing which mineral supplements your cattle need is not the only thing you should do as a cattle owner. You also have to make sure that your cattle get enough of these supplementations, and this is the part where you might have to do some trial and error before you get this right.
The best way to ensure that your cattle have enough minerals is by putting out the right number of feeders. Here’s the general rule when it comes to the number of feeders you should have for your cattle: 1 feeder for every 20 to 25 head of cattle. Of course, this number can change depending on the needs of your cattle.
For your mineral feeders, we highly recommend the Ameriag Feeder. These feeders are weatherproof and can be put out on the field with the livestock.
Once you have the right number of feeders in place, it’s time for you to figure out where to place the mineral supplement. If your cattle are not consuming enough minerals, then you should place the supplements near their water source. If they’re consuming too much, then you can place it a bit farther away. That way, you can ensure that your animals are getting the right amount of minerals.
Tip # 3: Feed your cattle the right type of mineral supplements
When it comes to supplements, it is important to remember that not all mineral supplements are created equal, thus the price differences.
Cheap mineral supplements may seem cost-efficient initially, but it can end up costing you more in the long run. So it is important that you do your research before deciding which supplement to buy for your cattle. Factors such as absorbability should be taken into account. If you’re looking for a great brand of mineral supplement that is both effective and cost-efficient, you might want to check out Kalmbach Mid Atlantic Beef Minerals.
If you’re still not sure what type of mineral supplement to feed your cattle, you can consult a nutritionist who can help you determine which cattle mineral is best for your animals.
Looking for a particular brand of cattle mineral? Martin’s Feed Mill offers a wide range of products to keep your cattle healthy and profitable. Visit our website to see our wide supply of products and specials and get your farm supplies delivered straight to your doorstep! For inquiries and other concerns, please feel free to call us at 814-349-8787 or stop in!