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Feed & Nutrition

Learn about all aspects of the dairy cow ration, from harvest to storage and balancing additives to forage supplementation.

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The Southeast U.S. has a tremendous potential to grow forage crops. Its mild winters and the possibility to grow forages 365 days of the year offer numerous possibilities.

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Triticale has become very popular with dairy producers managing cropping systems throughout much of the U.S. In most cropping systems, triticale functions as a winter-annual forage that includes fall establishment after the removal of corn silage or soybeans followed by a harvest of silage the following spring or early summer.

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For the past 20 years or more, emphasis has been placed on balancing diets for amino acids (AA) either by feeding rumen-protected amino acids (RPAA), especially methionine (Met) and lysine (Lys), or by combining feed ingredients to balance AA profiles.

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The idea of on-farm nutrient management is definitely not new, nor is increasing nutrient efficiency for economic benefit. For years, we’ve all heard about how whole-farm nutrient balance is a key feature of maintaining sustainable modern production agriculture.

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The trace mineral requirements of dairy animals is a topic that continues to receive a great deal of attention, and rightfully so. Although trace minerals comprise less than 0.01 percent of the total mass of an organism, they are essential for normal function.

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Lameness continues to increase on dairy farms as more tools are available to monitor and evaluate, consumer groups raise lameness as an animal welfare issue, and cost of treatment can be $498. Lameness is a major risk for culling after mastitis and reproductive failure.

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