Minerals. Are they needed?

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ddd75
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby ddd75 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 5:39 am

Bright Raven wrote:There are producers in my area and Kentucky in general who only put out the "Brown salt blocks" thinking that supplies the mineral needs when it is basically 99 % NaCl.



be nice.. they actually spend the money on those blocks?

I only have 1 neighbor who puts out any type of mineral.. the others have never fed any mineral ever!

cows look good, calve good, etc.. if I did it i'd have all sorts of problems I imagine :nod:
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby ddd75 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 5:44 am

angus9259 wrote:
cjmc wrote: I do think it is possible after studying costs, tags & the area you live in to form an "educated opinion" on which one is "the best bang for your buck" though. And deciding that is like figuring out which one returns the most to the ranch... In a not-so scientific-basically just your opinion way; but actually having and making an informed decision is much better than doing something "because that's what we have always done".


Well, I've been at this better than 20 years now I guess and I've tried any number of plans and programs from multiple vendors, loose vs tubs, and I've proven nothing to myself. So now I put out a general high quality mineral that touches all the bases. Pretty soon when folks ask why I do it I will be able to say "because that's what I have always done" :).



only way to tell is to stop feeding mineral for a year and see how the herd does
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby cjmc » Mon Apr 17, 2017 9:19 am

ddd75 wrote:
angus9259 wrote:
cjmc wrote: I do think it is possible after studying costs, tags & the area you live in to form an "educated opinion" on which one is "the best bang for your buck" though. And deciding that is like figuring out which one returns the most to the ranch... In a not-so scientific-basically just your opinion way; but actually having and making an informed decision is much better than doing something "because that's what we have always done".


Well, I've been at this better than 20 years now I guess and I've tried any number of plans and programs from multiple vendors, loose vs tubs, and I've proven nothing to myself. So now I put out a general high quality mineral that touches all the bases. Pretty soon when folks ask why I do it I will be able to say "because that's what I have always done" :).



only way to tell is to stop feeding mineral for a year and see how the herd does



And now we have gone full circle! Again, I feed mineral because the research shows it helps (at least it has in my area). But the differences between some minerals are so marginal you would probably need 10,000 HD of cattle to tell the difference between them. So I think the only way to say this one is better than that one is just to form an educated opinion. I'll go through my thought process on VitaFerm vs. Purinia Avila 4 (same Phos levels).

VitaFerm- Roughly $35/bag. Organic trace minerals, high levels of vitamins and it has aspergillus oryzae in it (AO-to improve feed efficiency) 4oz intake/h/d. Cost /h/d $0.175.

Purina Avila 4- Roughly $32/bag. Organic trace minerals, less vitamins than VitaFerm but still more than requirement. No AO. 2oz intake/h/d. Cost/h/d $0.08.

Why I would choose Purina over VitaFerm-why in the heck would I pay almost $.10/h/d for a product that the only difference is it has an AO, which research shows doesn't always work. Even if it did work, Rumensin is way cheaper & it does the same thing. Heck corn is only $3/bu or $0.05/lb If i wanted to spend $.10/h more on my cows to get more energy I would just feed 2 more pounds of corn. It would do them a heck of a lot more than that AO. Yes, my cows won't get as much Phos in them because the Purina's intake is only 1/2 of VitaFerm but summer phos levels in the grass are high enough it would be fine. In the winter I would feed a 0% Phos because I feed WDG.

Now that example was easy for me because the differences were extreme. The more similar the products get the harder it is to make a decision & the smaller the difference in your bottom line would be.
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby TexasBred » Mon Apr 17, 2017 10:31 am

cjmc wrote:And now we have gone full circle! Again, I feed mineral because the research shows it helps (at least it has in my area). But the differences between some minerals are so marginal you would probably need 10,000 HD of cattle to tell the difference between them. So I think the only way to say this one is better than that one is just to form an educated opinion. I'll go through my thought process on VitaFerm vs. Purinia Avila 4 (same Phos levels).

VitaFerm- Roughly $35/bag. Organic trace minerals, high levels of vitamins and it has aspergillus oryzae in it (AO-to improve feed efficiency) 4oz intake/h/d. Cost /h/d $0.175.

Purina Avila 4- Roughly $32/bag. Organic trace minerals, less vitamins than VitaFerm but still more than requirement. No AO. 2oz intake/h/d. Cost/h/d $0.08.

Why I would choose Purina over VitaFerm-why in the heck would I pay almost $.10/h/d for a product that the only difference is it has an AO, which research shows doesn't always work. Even if it did work, Rumensin is way cheaper & it does the same thing. Heck corn is only $3/bu or $0.05/lb If i wanted to spend $.10/h more on my cows to get more energy I would just feed 2 more pounds of corn. It would do them a heck of a lot more than that AO. Yes, my cows won't get as much Phos in them because the Purina's intake is only 1/2 of VitaFerm but summer phos levels in the grass are high enough it would be fine. In the winter I would feed a 0% Phos because I feed WDG.

Now that example was easy for me because the differences were extreme. The more similar the products get the harder it is to make a decision & the smaller the difference in your bottom line would be.

Both minerals are excellent minerals and both made by reputable companies. Actually the recommended consumption rate on each is the same so there is no savings there. Amaferm (AO) is an excellent ingredient and one of the few additives that really give results “as advertised” whether it’s weight gain, milk production or butterfat increase and it is also less expensive than both Rumensin and/or Bovatec and has none of the warnings that accompany them nor does it deteriorate over long periods of time. Plus for the Purina mineral in question is that 100% of the zinc, manganese, copper and cobalt come from chelated mineral in the form of amino acid complex’s whereas only a portion of these same minerals in the ConceptAide are chelated and also in a different form. Plus for the Purina……Concept aid contains 35 lbs. of Amaferm per ton which is 2 grams per head per day per day at a cost of $.03 per head per day. A real bargain for what it does. Plus for ConceptAide. Phosphorus levels for each can vary depending on which “mix” you decide to purchase so that is a tradeoff. Vitamin levels in ConceptAide are considerably higher than in the Purina mineral but also at a totally unneeded level so a waste of good money. Plus for Purina. There are a number of other differences in the two but all so insignificant they affect very little. So which one should you use?? Depends on where you are and what your needs are but both are well worth the money and both will do you a good job as will many other minerals on the market. Didn’t quite understand the “corn” comment as we’re not feeding mineral for energy, however, Amaferm will help the any concentrate your feeding as well as all grazing and/or hay more fully digest and release more energy thus the improved feed utilization.
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby cjmc » Mon Apr 17, 2017 6:24 pm

TexasBred wrote:
cjmc wrote:And now we have gone full circle! Again, I feed mineral because the research shows it helps (at least it has in my area). But the differences between some minerals are so marginal you would probably need 10,000 HD of cattle to tell the difference between them. So I think the only way to say this one is better than that one is just to form an educated opinion. I'll go through my thought process on VitaFerm vs. Purinia Avila 4 (same Phos levels).

VitaFerm- Roughly $35/bag. Organic trace minerals, high levels of vitamins and it has aspergillus oryzae in it (AO-to improve feed efficiency) 4oz intake/h/d. Cost /h/d $0.175.

Purina Avila 4- Roughly $32/bag. Organic trace minerals, less vitamins than VitaFerm but still more than requirement. No AO. 2oz intake/h/d. Cost/h/d $0.08.

Why I would choose Purina over VitaFerm-why in the heck would I pay almost $.10/h/d for a product that the only difference is it has an AO, which research shows doesn't always work. Even if it did work, Rumensin is way cheaper & it does the same thing. Heck corn is only $3/bu or $0.05/lb If i wanted to spend $.10/h more on my cows to get more energy I would just feed 2 more pounds of corn. It would do them a heck of a lot more than that AO. Yes, my cows won't get as much Phos in them because the Purina's intake is only 1/2 of VitaFerm but summer phos levels in the grass are high enough it would be fine. In the winter I would feed a 0% Phos because I feed WDG.

Now that example was easy for me because the differences were extreme. The more similar the products get the harder it is to make a decision & the smaller the difference in your bottom line would be.

Both minerals are excellent minerals and both made by reputable companies. Actually the recommended consumption rate on each is the same so there is no savings there. Amaferm (AO) is an excellent ingredient and one of the few additives that really give results “as advertised” whether it’s weight gain, milk production or butterfat increase and it is also less expensive than both Rumensin and/or Bovatec and has none of the warnings that accompany them nor does it deteriorate over long periods of time. Plus for the Purina mineral in question is that 100% of the zinc, manganese, copper and cobalt come from chelated mineral in the form of amino acid complex’s whereas only a portion of these same minerals in the ConceptAide are chelated and also in a different form. Plus for the Purina……Concept aid contains 35 lbs. of Amaferm per ton which is 2 grams per head per day per day at a cost of $.03 per head per day. A real bargain for what it does. Plus for ConceptAide. Phosphorus levels for each can vary depending on which “mix” you decide to purchase so that is a tradeoff. Vitamin levels in ConceptAide are considerably higher than in the Purina mineral but also at a totally unneeded level so a waste of good money. Plus for Purina. There are a number of other differences in the two but all so insignificant they affect very little. So which one should you use?? Depends on where you are and what your needs are but both are well worth the money and both will do you a good job as will many other minerals on the market. Didn’t quite understand the “corn” comment as we’re not feeding mineral for energy, however, Amaferm will help the any concentrate your feeding as well as all grazing and/or hay more fully digest and release more energy thus the improved feed utilization.


The recommend consumption rate of that specific Purina mineral is 2 oz, it may not be sold in your area. The 4 oz mineral (which is the same thing except 1/2 the level of all vitamins & minerals) is in the low 20’s/bag at my local feed store. So the savings is significant. My mineral supplier (not Purina) is charging 2 cents/h/d for the Rumensin at 200mg/h/d (level approved for mature cows). Which would be $0.01/h/d cheaper than the AO cost you stated. The special 2oz mineral Purina sells in this area is 100% organic. So you are right that would be an advantage, and depending on your area it would be a huge deal (or if you live in mine, it’s nice, but not a huge deal). The 4oz mineral they sell here is not 100% organic. I don’t know why that is, but the 2 oz mineral has no Cu, Zn, or Mn sulfates. The 4oz tag does have them listed as ingredients. Vit A & D are cheap Vit E is expensive, I totally agree with you that they are way too high in VitaFerm. However, the old ranchers around here think that while grazing corn stalks it helps. That thought has some basis in science. Lots of fertilizer has resulted in high nitrates in the water. High nitrates tie up Vit A & can cause some problems come calving time. My general philosophy is if old ranchers say something & it can be backed by science I probably should at least consider it. Outside of that one instance/time of year, I see no need for that level of Vitamins.
My corn logic goes like this. In my area calories are cheap (they aren’t everywhere). When I was a nutritionist for ranchers in the area during bad winters with lots of snow & really cold weather I would get asked what I thought about using Vitaferm. Most guys were using the 2oz Purina mineral. My response was always be along the lines of this. You are currently feeding: Corn silage, rolled corn, WDG, and prairie hay. Let’s say they are 2 months from calving Diet NEm is probably around 0.50 and costs roughly $1.25/h/d. If they switched to Vitaferm their cost/h/d would go to $1.35. Sure they would do better than without it. But I would always tell the producer, if you allow me to increase ration costs $0.10/h/d I’m going to include Ru for $.0.02 then I’m going to pull 4 lbs. of prairie hay out of your ration & add 4 lbs. of corn which will increase ration costs about another $0.08/h/d for a grand total of $0.10/h/d. Cows on my suggestion of extra corn and Ru would certainly do better than just adding AO to their diet.
The final point I always made when talking about AO’s if you go look at the research they did in 1991 (J Anim Sci 1991. 69:1733-1740) & reference in their advertisements it was at 3g of AO/h/d... So is it even effective at 2g/h/d? On top of that they did two digestion trails in that study & in one trial there was no difference between cows fed AO and the control cows! So when advising producers I always said go with what we know works to add energy when we need it, rumensin & corn.
Now if were talking about out on summer grass the topic changes some because we can’t supplement energy as easy. Still don’t know if I think it’s worth it. But hey that’s just my two cents, and at the end of the day it’s still only worth two cents. Phew, that was a lot of typing, Beer 30 now :drink:
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby angus9259 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 8:31 pm

ddd75 wrote:I only have 1 neighbor who puts out any type of mineral.. the others have never fed any mineral ever!

cows look good, calve good, etc.. if I did it i'd have all sorts of problems I imagine :nod:


How dare they!!! Someone should call the aspca and get those animals a new home where they can be cared for proper!
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby ddd75 » Tue Apr 18, 2017 6:28 am

angus9259 wrote:
ddd75 wrote:I only have 1 neighbor who puts out any type of mineral.. the others have never fed any mineral ever!

cows look good, calve good, etc.. if I did it i'd have all sorts of problems I imagine :nod:


How dare they!!! Someone should call the aspca and get those animals a new home where they can be cared for proper!



hahaha
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby TexasBred » Tue Apr 18, 2017 10:11 am

cjmc wrote:The final point I always made when talking about AO’s if you go look at the research they did in 1991 (J Anim Sci 1991. 69:1733-1740) & reference in their advertisements it was at 3g of AO/h/d... So is it even effective at 2g/h/d? On top of that they did two digestion trails in that study & in one trial there was no difference between cows fed AO and the control cows! So when advising producers I always said go with what we know works to add energy when we need it, rumensin & corn.
Now if were talking about out on summer grass the topic changes some because we can’t supplement energy as easy. Still don’t know if I think it’s worth it. But hey that’s just my two cents, and at the end of the day it’s still only worth two cents. Phew, that was a lot of typing, Beer 30 now :drink:


cj there is much more current research on the use of Amaferm (AO) in cattle diets all showing that it functions exactly as designed and the price is not $.10 per head per day but $.03 per day. Yes recommended feeding rate is 2 gr/hd/day for non lactating cattle and 3 gr/hd/day for lactating cattle. In my own herd I saw immediate (I mean next day) increases in milk and butterfat and over time fewer instances of open cattle and cystic cattle (one problem with Rumensin) all on the same amount of feed (Rumensin usually requires an increase in feed especially for lactating dairy cattle). The additional utilization of feed ingredients also gives almost the equivalent of the same 2 lbs. of corn in the ration that you discussed without having to lower roughage content in the ration or actually add corn. Simply utilizing the energy that is there but heretofore unavailable. BTW again, the Purina Wind and Rain All Season 7 Complete AV4 mineral I feed has a 4 oz. per head per day recommended consumption rate. Maybe they make different ones for your area. (You did mention SPECIAL mineral). All in all both are excellent minerals but as much as I believe in Amaferm, I still use the Purina. Enjoy that beer. ;-)
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby ricebeltrancher » Tue Apr 18, 2017 12:20 pm

Rafter S wrote:
angus9259 wrote:I have not proven to myself minerals are of any value. Cattle seemed healthy with them - they seemed healthy without. They have issues with them, they have issues without.

I put them out because smart people tell me I should but I have no proof they are right.


I can tell you one thing that I have proved to myself. I need to always feed salt that has the iodine added (EDDI salt). I had always been told that I should feed it to help prevent foot rot, and had always done so. A few years ago I thought to myself "I never have problems with foot rot. I should be able to feed the plain white salt." So I switched. Guess what? Apparently the reason I'd never had problems with foot rot was because I'd always fed the EDDI salt, because I had two or three cows that promptly developed it. I switched back to the EDDI salt and the problem stopped.


Thanks for reminding me. We are going to have to look into it now that we can't get medicated mineral. :cry2:
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby TexasBred » Tue Apr 18, 2017 12:28 pm

ricebeltrancher wrote:
Rafter S wrote:
angus9259 wrote:I have not proven to myself minerals are of any value. Cattle seemed healthy with them - they seemed healthy without. They have issues with them, they have issues without.

I put them out because smart people tell me I should but I have no proof they are right.


I can tell you one thing that I have proved to myself. I need to always feed salt that has the iodine added (EDDI salt). I had always been told that I should feed it to help prevent foot rot, and had always done so. A few years ago I thought to myself "I never have problems with foot rot. I should be able to feed the plain white salt." So I switched. Guess what? Apparently the reason I'd never had problems with foot rot was because I'd always fed the EDDI salt, because I had two or three cows that promptly developed it. I switched back to the EDDI salt and the problem stopped.


Thanks for reminding me. We are going to have to look into it now that we can't get medicated mineral. :cry2:

Welcome back Ricebelt. Been missing you........Look for mineral with elevated levels of iodine (eddi) and zinc.
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Re: Minerals. Are they needed?

Postby ricebeltrancher » Tue Apr 18, 2017 12:34 pm

TexasBred wrote:
ricebeltrancher wrote:
Rafter S wrote:
I can tell you one thing that I have proved to myself. I need to always feed salt that has the iodine added (EDDI salt). I had always been told that I should feed it to help prevent foot rot, and had always done so. A few years ago I thought to myself "I never have problems with foot rot. I should be able to feed the plain white salt." So I switched. Guess what? Apparently the reason I'd never had problems with foot rot was because I'd always fed the EDDI salt, because I had two or three cows that promptly developed it. I switched back to the EDDI salt and the problem stopped.


Thanks for reminding me. We are going to have to look into it now that we can't get medicated mineral. :cry2:

Welcome back Ricebelt. Been missing you........Look for mineral with elevated levels of iodine (eddi) and zinc.


Same here! We've got a barn full of show lambs and goats, so free time has been pretty limited lately! :nod: We have a good relationship with the coop we buy all of our feed from...I might make a point to talk to them about it soon and see what they have to say. Most of their feed business is Purina.
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