Jim Wade makes a point during the Herd Nutrition workshop.
Get nutrition right for best beef production
THE proper nutrition of beef cattle is a key component of a successful production system. Feed usually accounts for the single largest input cost associated with beef cattle. Nutrition consultant Jim Wade has helped graziers develop nutrition plans for their herd.
LDC hosted a herd nutrition workshop in Collinsville in November, headlined by Wade Agriculture Consultants principal Jim Wade.
Jim helped graziers identify the nutrient values of the pasture on their properties, and to place a dollar value on all the nutritional inputs required to meet their production targets – the ultimate aim being able to cost effectively feed and nourish their stock.
The key to surviving dry spells is to know how to balance how much grazing occurs and how much time is allowed for recovery of the grazed pastures, and knowing what feed additives to provide livestock, including custom supplement mixes for optimum performance dependent on the season.
Jim covered a broad range of topics including:
- understanding the ruminant digestive process and basic nutrition required for effective feeding and management;
- how to balance breeder number to increase production;
- the benefits of creep feeding, which allows calves unrestricted access to additional feed while they are still suckling,;
- balancing protein, trace elements and energy;
- improving feed quality, the benefits of soil, plant tissue and water analysis; and
- supplementation for pasture management.