Act now to redress energy deficit to get cows back on track

First published:

Length: 100 words; 1 minutes

Cows Feeding Image

As continuing energy deficits threaten to hold back milk production this winter, adjusting rations to increase energy intakes is vital if cows are to get back on target.

Reduced grass energy levels, less summer feeding and low energy grass silages mean cow body condition is lower than ideal. Once housed, cows will prioritise regaining body condition ahead of milk output, with fertility, lameness and milk proteins also suffering if energy deficits remain uncorrected.

Use high energy liquid feeds, confectionery blends or moist feeds to raise ration energy density and boost dry matter intakes for an overall increase in energy supply.

“…cows will prioritise regaining body condition ahead of milk output…”

Key facts & figures:

  • Most grazing herds will be entering winter with lower than ideal BCS1

  • Regaining 0.5 BCS1 can drop milk yield by 1.9 litres/day for three months

  • Milk value can fall 0.5ppl if low energy cuts proteins 0.15% below threshold

  • LactoBoost or Molale will increase ration energy density, sugars and DMI2

  • Confectionery blends like SugaRich Dairy another good high energy feed

  • Consider KW SodaWheat or Traffordgold where risk of acidosis is high

1Body condition score
2Dry Matter Intake

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