Oat hay or grass hay for heavy bred heifers ?

Help Support CattleToday:


Well-known member
Oct 11, 2018
Reaction score
New Mexico
I have 7 month bred heifers that are in a separate pen for 45 days until the field my field is ready to graze. My question. I have fescue grass and oat hay. Which should I feed ? I had to pull a calf last year ( I was feeding wheat hay ), I don’t want to do it again. The grass is endophyte free fescue. Thanks


  • A235E393-533F-4D8A-855D-9F973E73CEFF.jpeg
    767.2 KB · Views: 7
  • CFD0A2CA-6979-4DD0-8A58-5E788875DD3D.png
    7.2 MB · Views: 7
Non tested hay. The oat hay is lower in protein , the oat hay has more energy though.
Your hay looks really nice in the pics!
Without a test, it's a crapshoot really tho, I would imagine.
The lower protein won't grow the calf as big in the last trimester.
With heifers tho.....
You know how it goes
There is a lot of mythical information when it comes to nutrition and calving difficulty. More often than not the issue stems from not enough nutrition causing the heifer or cow to “give up “ during calving. On the other side is a build up of fat around the reproductive tract. Heifers need the best quality nutrition throughout gestation.
Just picking, but…I love the term “horse hay”. Hay is either poor, average, or excellent Quality. No matter what species eats it. That being said, I prefer forage over feed. I use Sweetpro blocks ( 16% with heifers) in conjunction with standing forage or hay/haylage. A heifer is going to typically eat around 2.5% of her body weight in dry matter. That may increase depending on the needs of the calf. Let’s remember, a heifer has a maintenance, growth, gestation or lactation requirement and nutrition is key to fetal programming during gestation.

Latest posts