Take action to minimise heat stress impact on milk output

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Length: 223 words; 1-2 minutes

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Increased feed demand to supplement drought-stricken grazing isn’t just limiting availability for the rest of the summer, warns KW nutritionist Samuel Wellock. With winter supplies of key forage replacers also selling out fast, quick decisions are needed if contracts on the best value feeds – some of which could actually improve margins this winter – are to be secured.

“For a typical 200-cow herd fed a base ration supporting maintenance-plus-25 litres, feeding 4kg FW/cow of Traffordgold wheat gluten-moist feed can cut grass silage requirements by 6kg FW/cow,” Mr Wellock explains. “Over a full six month winter, that frees up around 219 tonnes of extra silage, enough for another 37 days on the same ration.

“The change would also boost daily energy intake enough to support another 0.75 litres/cow. At 30ppl, that’s worth 22p/cow/day, more than covering the 18p/cow/day for the moist feed.”

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A KW custom blend can be tailored to match nutrient requirements.

Other feeds to consider include draff and brewers’ grains, with a custom blend probably one of the best options for those not able to handle moist feeds, advises Mr Wellock.

“Blends allow a variety of feeds to be used depending on which are best value. It’s also possible to secure a specification now to take advantage of current prices and availability, but with the option to change formulation prior to delivery if needed.”

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