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Ultra Low GI Horse Feed

Horses have traditionally been fed grain based feeds but modern science has now allowed us to understand that cereals are not the best form of energy for every resting or working horse.

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What Is The Ideal Calf Feed?

A calf has a small rumen – a capacity of just 1-2 litres in a newborn, as opposed to 25-30 at 3 months of age – that needs quality feed in order to develop effectively. Because of the size of the rumen the feed has to provide a high concentration of essential nutrients. The best calf feeds are concentrated and high in dry matter. Feed can vary widely when it comes to dry matter content – for example, silage-based feeds may contain only 50% dry matter as compared with 85% in the better concentrates. You will certainly pay less for feed with a higher moisture content but it’s a false saving. You are essentially paying for water and your calf...

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Function and Development of the Rumen

Mature cattle belong to a class of mammals known as ruminants – even-toed cud-chewers with four stomachs. In the adult cow the rumen is the first and largest stomach, comprising approximately 80% of the digestive tract. The feed that passes into the rumen ferments, assisted by billions of bacteria, fungi and protozoa (microorganisms) in conjunction with periodic cud-chewing. As the feed is broken down the cow absorbs some through the wall of the rumen while some (along with a portion of the microorganisms) moves into the other stomachs to be further digested. Newly born calves are pre-ruminants. They have the same four stomachs as an adult bovine but the rumen is significantly smaller. In the calf, the largest part of...

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Preventing the Post-Weaning Growth Check

The post-weaning growth check refers to a period of slow growth usually lasting about two weeks as the calf transitions from milk to solid rations. It is common but also preventable. Post-weaning growth check is usually attributable to one or more of the following factors: Not enough dry feed in the early weeks – If the calf lacks sufficient dry feed in the weeks up to weaning the rumen will not have developed sufficiently. The calf will not be able to grow rapidly if the rumen is not accustomed to processing significant amounts of dry feed. Too much roughage – Of course the goal is to move the calf off the cow and onto pasture but if too much hay...

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