Thursday, December 9, 2010

hot lunch for cold weather

This past week, winter seems to have set in, especially early morning calf feeding time - it's a reminder that extra protection for these youngsters, both physical shelter and nutritionally. Consider calf blankets - yes, it was 60F last week, but for the next three months, these calves will expend a large amount of their calories just trying to stay warm. That starts occurring even when it is just below 55F degrees - and those calories spent on staying warm are not available for growth. The blankets can help them stay more comfortable and continue growing to their potential.

Calves need extra calories, and an extra feeding is ideal - if that isn't possible, consider upgrading your milk replacer to a higher level of fat and protein - it is being recognized with recent research the past few years that the 'standard' level of feeding for dairy calves isn't meeting the potential they have - ask about this at the next herd check or farm visit and review your plan for calf care for the winter - now's the time - not in february or march.