Year: 2022

Evaluating Water Quality

Water is simultaneously the most important and most overlooked nutrient for all livestock. Poor water quality can negatively affect multiple animal aspects including growth, general productivity, and reproduction. Death is also a possibility if water is severely contaminated and/or restricted. It is critical that water quality is monitored regularly to support optimal animal performance. Many…

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Essential Oils for Poultry

Antibiotics have traditionally been used in the poultry and livestock industries to both treat illness and as growth promotants at subtherapeutic levels.  However, with the rise in concern over antibiotic use and resistance, the acceptability of antibiotic use has dwindled. In response, essential oils have grown in popularity as an alternative option to traditional medications….

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Prime Cuts: Slick Bunk Management

Nutritionists and cattle raisers alike focus heavily on balanced rations, getting right down to grams of X and Y nutrients, but delivery of that feed is just as important. Successfully feeding cattle relies on walking the line between over- and under-feeding. Underfeeding limits performance and overfeeding is expensive and wasteful. Commercial feeders have turned to…

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Acidosis: An Overview

As the name suggests, Rumen Acidosis affects ruminants such as cattle, sheep, goats, etc. It is the most common nutritional disorder seen on cattle operations. However, there are simple steps we can take to prevent acidosis from occurring. The normal pH of the rumen sits around 6.0 – 7.0. Acidosis occurs when the pH of…

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Acidosis: Meet SARA

Sub-acute rumen acidosis, also known as SARA, occurs when the rumen pH drops below the normal range for extended or frequent periods. Normal rumen pH run 6.0 – 7.0, while SARA occurs when the pH drops below 5.8 – 6.0 for an extended duration. After a high concentrate meal, rumen pH typically drops under 6.0…

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Acidosis: Acute Development

Acidosis boils down to two main issues: the overproduction of acid within the rumen and decreased buffering of the rumen due to decreased saliva flow. The causes of these issues can vary and are cumulative. It is the most common nutritional disorder seen on cattle operations, while also being one of the easiest to prevent…

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Protecting Your Backyard Flock: Avian Influenza

As the name suggests, avian influenza (AI) affects birds, both domestic and wild. Being natural hosts, migratory birds can carry and shed the virus without showing clinical symptoms. Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) is a devastating disease that is highly contagious and almost always fatal (except in ducks and geese). Affected domestic birds include chickens,…

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Breaking Down Milk Fat

After years of focusing on low fat, fat free, and other “health” trends, fat has made a comeback. There is renewed favor for full fat milk, cheeses, and butter. Now is the time to key in on milk components, with special focus on fat. Milk fat comes from preformed fat (dietary fat or body reserves)…

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Condition Scoring: Sheep & Goats

Body condition scores (BCS) have widely been used across species to monitor body fat coverage. BCS plays an integral role in nutritional management decisions. Like dairy cattle, sheep and goats utilize a 5-point scale to evaluate BCS. A score of 1 indicates an animal that is emaciated and a score of 5 is an animal…

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White Muscle Disease

White muscle disease (WMD), sometimes called nutritional myopathy or nutritional muscular dystrophy, is typically associated with a selenium and/or vitamin E deficiency. WMD appears more frequently in regions with selenium deficient soil. WMD can affect both youngstock and mature animals. Newborns may be stillborn or too weak to nurse due to selenium deficiency. WMD can…

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