The Girls are Restless

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grannysoo

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Plenty of grass, mostly coastal bermuda along with bahia grass. Added a couple of rolls of hay to see it that would help. Poop is green, plenty of protein, plenty of squirts... don't stand behind them :lol2: Yet, with all of the good grass, the water, the hay, they are still hungry for something.

25 or so adults and 25 of so youngsters have eaten 100 pounds of minerals in the past two days, and they're still not satisfied.

The only things I have noticed different are that they have been licking a spot that has clay dirt.

Suggestions or advice?

Something is missing from their diet........
 

hrbelgians

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grannysoo":c6etv6tg said:
Plenty of grass, mostly coastal bermuda along with bahia grass. Added a couple of rolls of hay to see it that would help. Poop is green, plenty of protein, plenty of squirts... don't stand behind them :lol2: Yet, with all of the good grass, the water, the hay, they are still hungry for something.

25 or so adults and 25 of so youngsters have eaten 100 pounds of minerals in the past two days, and they're still not satisfied.

The only things I have noticed different are that they have been licking a spot that has clay dirt.

Suggestions or advice?

Something is missing from their diet........

I don't feel like I can actually give you a solution, but will share my similar experience.
I was grazing a paddock which looked absolutely great (bud stage) grasses and legumes, but the cows bellered day and night. I even had 3 week old calves (4 of them) which ended up being lame after 3 days on this lot. Go figure?? Finally I decided something is wrong so I pulled them out and moved to a pasture which was actually all headed out (not as lush) and they were happy within 6 hours, plus 3 of the 4 lame calves were not lame within 12 hours after leaving this paddock with absolutely no treatment at all.
I did tissue tests and have NOT definitely determined what went on. The test did not show an absolute reason for what happened. The nutritionalist felt that it was probably to much nitrogen?? All I do know is the mineral consumption dropped instantly and they were happy again??

Like I said not much of an answer.

If I was making an attempt to give you advice, I would try a tissue test. Good luck!!
 

1982vett

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grannysoo":19vhog5q said:
MO_cows":19vhog5q said:
You didn't mention salt??

I have not given them any additional salt.
It would be worth the price of a bag of salt to see if that is what they are craving since the mineral is their only source right now.
 
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grannysoo

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1982vett":1uew1yra said:
grannysoo":1uew1yra said:
MO_cows":1uew1yra said:
You didn't mention salt??

I have not given them any additional salt.
It would be worth the price of a bag of salt to see if that is what they are craving since the mineral is their only source right now.

I will do that this evening and see what happens.
 

farmwriter

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What kind of mineral are they getting? Maybe a change of mineral?
Don't want to start a feud w/other posters, but I don't like salt and mineral. Salt in the mineral helps them get the right amount. Additional salt can make cows eat less mineral because they're full of salt when they have not necessarily ingested all the mineral they need. Just a thought.
What causes too much nitrogen?
 

1982vett

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farmwriter":e70ltixi said:
What kind of mineral are they getting? Maybe a change of mineral?
Don't want to start a feud w/other posters, but I don't like salt and mineral. Salt in the mineral helps them get the right amount. Additional salt can make cows eat less mineral because they're full of salt when they have not necessarily ingested all the mineral they need. Just a thought.
Theory can say the opposite too. Relying on the mineral to provide all the salt could cause an over consumption of mineral in an effort to consume salt.

My recommendation to give access to salt specifically is designed to test that theory. Cattle probably need more salt under the Georgia heat in the summer. If the mineral manufacturer doesn't take this in consideration, a cow could over consume minerals in an effort to consume salt.

farmwriter":e70ltixi said:
What causes too much nitrogen?

Fertilizer.
Heavily fertilized pastures followed by drought conditions in early growth stage.
 

ga. prime

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grannysoo":22jsonh4 said:
The only things I have noticed different are that they have been licking a spot that has clay dirt.

Suggestions or advice?

Something is missing from their diet........

Some stores around here sell small zip lock bags of kaolin clay. The buyers are pregnant females of a certain ethnicity. Somebody told me the pregnant females eat the clay. Hope that helps!
 

hrbelgians

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1982vett":3j9mmdi3 said:
Fertilizer.
Heavily fertilized pastures followed by drought conditions in early growth stage.

That's interesting!! Would you call chicken manure heavily fertilized??
No this is not a trick question, but the reason I ask is because that is what I applied in August of 2008.
 

1982vett

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farmwriter":ceb8827i said:
Point taken 1982vett.
Would you leave access to both or pull mineral while salt is present?
Yes, I'd leave the mineral out and give them the option. If they continue to consume the mineral then a different mineral mix might be a good option.

I feed mine this way all the time purely on the fact that when take the salt away mineral consumption doesn't increase. I regularly let the salt run out for a week or so to see if mineral consumption will increase. If it doesn't I put more salt out.

Now mine are straying from the norm too. They aren't consuming either as I would think they would this time of the year with the quality of forage being what it is. Or maybe the forage is better than I think it is.

Grannysoo, maybe all that Georgia rain and sunshine has ruined your grass. :p Maybe they need all that mineral.
 

1982vett

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hrbelgians":2vtmjpqd said:
1982vett":2vtmjpqd said:
Fertilizer.
Heavily fertilized pastures followed by drought conditions in early growth stage.

That's interesting!! Would you call chicken manure heavily fertilized??
No this is not a trick question, but the reason I ask is because that is what I applied in August of 2008.
If it were put out June 2009 it could be a source if they were eating the chicken litter. August of 2008 is long past causing a problem. Generally the nitrogen in litter isn't readily available to a plant which is the reason commercial fertilizer is used to help fill that gap.
 

mnmtranching

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The only time I've seen cattle go through that much mineral. They were going after the salt in the mineral.
 

BARNSCOOP

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Grannysoo,
This is JUST a thought:
I don't know if you had heavy rains this spring but we had unusually high amounts . I tested my soil in three pastures, and tested my forage (hay) that was cut this spring. I also decided to test hay cut from spring 2007 that is in my barn loft for horses. I was susprized that the hay from 2007 tested BETTER than this years hay given we were in a drought then. Compairing soil samples and forage tests it was clear that the heavy rains have "washed out" much of the nutrients in the soil. I also noticed that my pastures with higher ground tested better, but even those saturated with clover could not compare to the 2007 forage. Most folks didn't get to fertilize due to so much rain. Could it be that even though your one pasture is lush it lacks something in the forage, because of the rains?
I believe 1982vett & mo_cows have probley hit it on the head with the heat the past few weeks.
 
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grannysoo

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BARNSCOOP":3oao4lo6 said:
Grannysoo,
Most folks didn't get to fertilize due to so much rain. Could it be that even though your one pasture is lush it lacks something in the forage, because of the rains?

We did fertilize this year, so the grass "should" have what it needs. However, I've laid in a couple of rolls of hay from last year, and I'm going to pick up another couple of bags of minerals along with some salt on the way back to the farm this evening.

All suggestions are welcome!
 

BARNSCOOP

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I think I will do the same. I feed free choice minerals just as you do but the salt idea that 1892 vett and mo_cows addressed makes alot of sence to me so I to am going to by plain salt as well. Although I am not sure I can get in loose form.
Post and lets us know if this works, I am interested to learn.
 
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grannysoo

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Jeanne - Simme Valley":2bst55nf said:
Lush fast growing grasses can be up in the high 20's for protein.

And they have been in a really lush field. I moved them into an area that is not so lush and have got them on a diet that includes hay, to lower the protein level. Also laid out the minerals and salt last night. We'll see how it affects them in a day or two.

I really question if the protein was so much that everything went right out the back end. No texture at all. Just squirts...
 

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