Prime Cuts: Lick Tubs & Blocks

Types

 

Lick tubs and blocks are designed to accommodate livestock species ranging from sheep and goats, to cattle, and horses. Tubs and blocks are designed to complement the feeding strategy currently in place and are available in various formulations to meet the needs of your program. There are 4 main types of tubs and blocks used:

  1. Low Moisture

    1. Formed by heating and rapidly cooling molasses that is then mixed with a designated premix before pouring into tubs to cool; creates a very hard end product

    2.  95% dry matter

    3. Prevents overconsumption

    4. Best overall value

    5. Carried by Famo (SmartLic® brand)

  2. Chemical

    1. Uses reactive magnesium oxide and calcium oxide to harden the block through chemical reactions

    2. Higher moisture content with about 80% dry matter

    3. Softer product; risk of overconsumption

  3. Compressed

    1. Typically higher in distillers content

    2. Higher daily intake

    3. Formed by compression to harden block

  4. Pressed

    1. The typical 30 – 40 lb protein or mineral blocks

    2. Pressed into block form

What to Consider

  1. Intake: Aiming for controlled intake. Overconsumption is wasteful and costly.

  2. Cost: Low moisture blocks generally cost the most per ton, but cost the least on a per head per day basis because of the lower intake.

  3. Pasture Quality: Providing lick tubs to cattle on poorer quality pastures can help to increase dry matter digestibility by providing key nutrients that are lacking.

     

Tips

  1. Use 1 tub/15 – 20 head; a minimum of 2 tubs should be provided even in there are fewer than 15 animals total.

  2. StressLic tubs are great not only for stressed cattle but sick cattle as well.

  3. MagLic tubs are useful for cattle raised on pastures prone to causing grass tetany.

  4. Need to adjust intake?

    1. Increase: Move tubs towards water source, walking paths, or where cattle tend to congregate. Also, consider getting more tubs.

    2. Decrease: Move tubs away from water sources and put in areas of less activity.