Photo submitted by a local producer to our feed department manager. It's great to see how our local coop is reaching out to the next generation of producers! It's about more than just making feed.
By Brooke Brunsvig, Nutritional Consultant
Harvest has now wrapped up or is FINALLY getting close for most producers. It makes me laugh to think about how we went from “This is nice, we might be done early!” to “Wow, this is getting long and drawn out!” However, now we get to see those cows get a break from the calf outside her and capitalize on her lowest nutrient requirements of the year, while utilizing what many of us see as basically free feed.
Here are a couple rules of thumb and helpful (I hope) pieces of information.
- How many days can you plan on?
Cows don’t actually (or should be forced to) eat corn ‘stalks’; they primarily consume the 39.6% of the residue that is corn, leaves, and husks. One super simple way to figure out how long you can run a cow on residue is to divide the grain yield by 3.5. This number will be the number of days a 1200# cow should have fodder to effectively graze. A slightly more involved set of numbers is to take the yield times the 8 pounds of grazable fodder per bushel of grain yield divided by 2% of your average cow’s body weight. These methods yield a nine-day difference in grazing time, but either method is a great place to start.
- Am I meeting the cow’s needs and when/do I need to provide protein?
If you don’t believe in tubs any other time of year, this is one of two particular times (with the other being a stress tub at weaning) I urge you to consider them. Protein is often the nutrient limiting production; if protein is deficient, no energy source you can provide will get her back into productive condition. As I mentioned, cows will graze about 2% of their body weight in corn stalks. Protein will help digest the forage available and, in turn, let them consume more dry matter, closer to the desired 2.5% of body weight, to meet her needs.
By Shannon Voegele, Nutritional Consultant
Many of you have probably already headed your cows to stalks. Cattle diets will change and so will their nutrient requirements as they graze. If you have enough stalks to graze for 60 days, you can save some money by delaying the protein supplementation to the half-way point. The cows will eat the products with the most nutrient value first, the corn, then move to husks and leaves, and finish with the stalks, having the lowest nutrient value. At this point you need to provide a protein supplement. Now is the time for us to be discussing which supplement program will work best for you. Give your CFC nutritionist a call; would love to discuss some options to keep your cow in the best shape headed into calving season.
Feed Department Update
By Tyler McCoy, Feed Department Manager
Harvest is in full swing and new crop corn is finally coming in. It truly is amazing how much better performance we see grinding new crop corn. Terry and Nick have been hauling creep out like madmen and helping with cattle feed deliveries out of the mill when Nick isn’t hauling creep. Megan has been trying her best to keep everyone happy while their straight truck has been in the shop the last couple of months. The spare truck that we have down there is quite a bit bigger than the one that they are used to and doesn’t fit under a couple overheads or in a couple of sheds that they need to deliver to, so they have had their hands full. I would like to thank everyone involved for making it work down there throughout the last couple of months. We did receive good news last night that the truck is finally done and heading back to Tyndall today. After talking to Paul, I think he’s excited to have his baby back.
We picked up over 24,000 new pig spaces the last couple of months and the mill has been beyond busy. Last month we ground over 120,000 bushels and that’s only in 20 days of production. We all can’t wait for the mill upgrade to get done in January to help keep up with the new barns that we are currently feeding.
Just a quick heads up, we will be switching our layer to the high protein ration here at the end of the month. If you prefer the regular ration throughout winter, please let your location manager know so that they can keep some in stock. Hope everyone has a safe and prosperous harvest. As always thanks for your business!
Are you thinking about creep feeding?
Call a Nutritional Consultant or Location Manager for pricing and availability today.
Keep our feedlot programs in mind once you wean your calves.
Call a Nutritional Consultant or Location Manager for details.
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