South Africa

Health Care

Score 4.8 (6 Votes)

BEEF COW MANAGEMENT PRECALVING: The role of a Digestive Modifier

This is article 3 of 7 articles on this topic

“DON’T FORGET” 

If a digestive modifier is not already part of the supplementation of late pregnant cows, it is highly recommended to include it in the supplementation program. 

During the late winter, not only is the quality of natural grazing very low, but availability of the more desirable species may also be limited. Cows grazing on maize residues will also start to struggle to utilize the “left overs” at the end of the winter. As a result, cattle have to utilize the less palatable plant material, which is also more difficult to digest. And so the vicious circle starts: difficult to digest - the flow rate through the digestive system slows down - intake decreases -  animals have fewer nutrients available -  condition decreases! This happens precisely at the time when the cow's nutritional needs increase and condition must be maintained! 


The above situation is made worse by the fact that animals will resort to browsing (where available), in order to make up their nutrient deficit.  While most browse material is rich in protein, it also contains tannins which bind with both plant and feed proteins and deprive animals of this valuable nutrient. Tannins also kill off rumen microbes and can even result in toxicity. Tannins also “lock-up” micro nutrients such as zinc and copper, causing deficiencies which have serious results.

Your animal’s dung will tell you when they suffer from the intake of poor quality grazing and when to include Browse Plus®. See the illustration below:



 

The supplementation of urea (rumen degradable nitrogen) containing licks will assist in addressing the protein shortage of the rumen flora and is a must on poor quality grazing. However, “don’t forget” that the inclusion of a Digestive Modifier (Browse Plus®) can complement urea containing licks and really makes a difference. It contains a combination of high quality active ingredients that all work together to support the health and functioning of rumen organisms and neutralize the negative effects of tannins, resins and terpenes. This results in improved digestion, increased flow rate and intake. The result is that more nutrients are available for the rumen flora and the animal to limit the loss of condition.

“Don’t forget” the tried and tested product that has brought distinct benefits to livestock in South Africa for more than two decades already, by minimizing weight loss and condition of your livestock during critical times, i.e. pre-calving.

 

At the end of the season you will be glad - but only if you “Don’t forget!”  the Browse Plus®!

 

NB. The supplementation of a digestive modifier is complementary to the current supplementation program. It does not contain protein, energy or minerals that are essential to replenish during this time.

 

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