Feeding Cotton Trash

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May 11, 2004
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I was wondering if any of you feed your cows cotton trash. I have had many people here tell me it is pretty good for the cows and will help hold their weight over the winter. By the way, cotton trash is everytihg left over after the gin processes the cotton. No seed but hulls, cotton and whatever else is left.

I have always called them the burrs. I have fed them. They aren't good in my opinion because they are mostly a filler. The lint that is left over is not digestable. The biggest problem with them are the sharp edges of the burrs. I have had cows get lumpy Jaw and throat. The vet said the burrs cut the lining of the throat and cheek and they get infected. Usually most will burst and drain and refill. Some can get so big the cow suffacates. I have heard that you can get them ground and mix in ration and they are a cheap filler. Cotton gins are always wanting to get rid of them because they are a fire hazard. Once they start burning there is no putting them out. So wantch your storage if you do get some.

What I ment was that was a term we called them when I lived in West Texas. My father was a cotton farmer and that was the term every one used. The type I was refering was straight from the gin after the lint and the seed wa removed.

Possibly differences due to geographical area. Don't they use mostly "strippers" in west and north Texas, as opposed to "pickers"? I would suppose that the gin trash from a "picker" operation would be cleaner and relatively free of burrs, or am I missing something? I'm from a "picker" area, but even so I think most gin trash around here gets used for making compost.
Not for sure about the use of strippers, but I do know that all here are pickers. I don't believe I have ever heard of anyone using a stripper. I don't think he was meaning that there are actually burrs in the trash. They just called the cotton trash burrs. Maybe I am wrong :)

Well, I grew up in North Texas "back when". We had lots of cotton, and many folks used cotton seed hulls - or burrs - same thing/different word, as supplemental winter feed. At the time they were plentiful and cheap. The hulls or burrs were mixed with something, usually in liquid form, to add palatability and nutritional value, both of which are lacking in burrs, and fed out in troughs. I can't remember problems with lump jaw or anything like that, but then I can't remember much anything else, either. I've not heard the term "cotton trash" before, but if it refers to a product that contains not only the hulls but the pieces of cotton stalks, leaves and bolls that are left over from the ginning process, that could be some fairly sorry stuff, I guess.
We've fed "mote" before which is basically cotton gin trash in a large square bale tied up with wire. I personally dont think it did much good and it was kind of messy as far as the leftover cotton that wouldnt decay. we eventually had to burn the leftovers which was not really anymore than is wasted from a roundbale but it just stuck out more, being white, and looked bad. Ive also heard that tons of weeds come up where you feed gin trash. I would stick with the cottonseed, or preferably get some good quality hay instead.

Our cattle glean our cotton fields every year and we never have any jaw problems b/c of cotton hulls. We did have a few jaw problems from oat or wheat seed heads last year, however.
In our feed formula there is 500 lb of cotton seed hulls per ton. We use it as a source of fiber and to cut down on the possibility of bloat. It is the formula that the Univ. of GA uses in all their bull tests. We love it as do the cows.

Bill :cboy:

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