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Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:35 pm
by T & B farms
My cows are eating me out of the house on mineral. I’ve been feeding vitaferm heat. About 2 months ago I noticed an increase in concumption, so like always I threw out a salt block. That didn’t seem to slow them down much. So I bought loose salt and started mixing it directly with the mineral. About 1/4 bag of salt per bag of mineral (estimate). Still way over eating it. I upped the salt more, same results.
Today is what got me to wondering. Weaned a small pasture of calves 26hd. Most being 600-700 lbs. they are in a dry lot with good fescue hay, and I’m feeding a little whole corn. I gave them 1/2 bag of heat, they ate it clean in a hour. So I have them the rest of the bag and mixed in 1/2 bag salt. Same thing, gone in a hour. Then I dumped out the rest of the bag out. Plain salt, come home this evening it was licked clean.
Do I have a problem? Keep feeding them salt till they get what they need? I’ve never noticed this kind of concumption before.

On the other hand, my fall cows won’t touch any mineral. This is the only pasture like this. They have had the same bag of mineral for 2 months. 18 head at this pasture.

Anyone else had this problem? Normally I never let any any pasture run out of mineral, but when they eat it like they have been makes it very hard. And expensive

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:41 pm
by Bright Raven
This is important. I use vitaferm ConceptAid and vitaferm heat in summer. NEVER MIX THE WHITE SALT WITH THE VITAFERM.

VITAFERM is one of the few mineral salts that does not include NaCl. Therefore, the directions state that you place it out WITH loose white salt in the same area.

They are eating the mineral in an effort to get NaCl. This would be like mixing sweet feed into the mineral.

I think if you put it out properly, you will solve your consumption problem.

I use the covered mineral feeders. In one end put the Vitaferm. In the other end, put the loose white salt.

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:46 pm
by T & B farms
I have done that, only with salt blacks tho.
You think loose salt would be better?
Thank you for the reply, I was not aware to not mix them.

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:48 pm
by Bright Raven
T & B farms wrote:I have done that, only with salt blacks tho.
You think loose salt would be better?
Thank you for the reply, I was not aware to not mix them.


It specifically says "loose" white salt.

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:06 pm
by T & B farms
Bright Raven wrote:
T & B farms wrote:I have done that, only with salt blacks tho.
You think loose salt would be better?
Thank you for the reply, I was not aware to not mix them.


It specifically says "loose" white salt.


Guess I should learn to read. Thank you raven, I will give that a try.

Any idea why the one certain pasture won’t eat any mineral?

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:28 pm
by Bright Raven
T & B farms wrote:
Bright Raven wrote:
T & B farms wrote:I have done that, only with salt blacks tho.
You think loose salt would be better?
Thank you for the reply, I was not aware to not mix them.


It specifically says "loose" white salt.


Guess I should learn to read. Thank you raven, I will give that a try.

Any idea why the one certain pasture won’t eat any mineral?


No. I don't. It must be the forage? Or is the soil different?

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:49 pm
by T & B farms
Bright Raven wrote:
T & B farms wrote:
Bright Raven wrote:
It specifically says "loose" white salt.


Guess I should learn to read. Thank you raven, I will give that a try.

Any idea why the one certain pasture won’t eat any mineral?


No. I don't. It must be the forage? Or is the soil different?


It is similar soil to the rest of it. Very high quality fescue, and some volunteer Bermuda
.

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 5:25 pm
by Butterbean_Farms
I don’t have a direct answer to your question; but I’m feeding an igr/salt/mineral and my cows may go a couple of weeks without eating very much, and then it is like you flip a switch and I can’t keep the feeder full. They have done this all summer.

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 6:50 pm
by ALACOWMAN
What the weather like there lately, Been wet?

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 6:58 pm
by wbvs58
If they are chasing it they need it.

Ken

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 7:33 pm
by T & B farms
ALACOWMAN wrote:What the weather like there lately, Been wet?


Yes. We went from d-4 drought to flooding. Can’t miss a rain now.

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 7:52 pm
by Turkeybird
Move the mineral feeder further away from the water trough

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 9:33 pm
by circlebllc
Mine always use more white salt during wet times. Mineral and salt always out.

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Sun Oct 14, 2018 9:53 am
by ALACOWMAN
Mine wear em out when the grass lushes back up..they crave it. it needs plenty of magnesium..they don't know it,,but you will..they just crave the salt..

Re: Cows major salt consumption.

Posted: Mon Oct 15, 2018 3:35 pm
by cjmc
Do you have a problem- if you keep feeding it at that rate possibly. Assuming it's a 4oz product they ate 8 times the amount they are supposed to consume just that day. Depending on product formulation, recent consumption history & your area you might be nearing toxic levels of certain minerals.

Ideas to address the issue- switch to a mineral tub and feed free choice salt. Check phos levels of the product (cattle can chase phos & salt). Hand feed the product each day/ every other day (at twice the amount) along with free choice salt.