Cattle production: Salt licks and osteoarthritis

Question: How should salt licks be used? Can they be used to combat osteoarthritis in cattle? The main causes of osteoarthritis (inflamed joints) in cattle are a deficiency in protein, phosphorus, magnesium and manganese. It can be caused by feeding the incorrect licks, as well as by the high intake of…

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Livestock production: Dealing with trace element antagonists

Question: The borehole water on my farm contains a lot of lime (calcium). Could this affect my animals’ health? What about inoculations? Calcium is probably the best known antagonist to trace elements in Southern Africa and often occurs in borehole water. Successful trace element supplementation is often hampered by significant…

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Livestock production: How to supplement trace elements correctly

Question: How important is it to use trace elements and how should I administer them? Essential trace elements are often the least acknowledged aspect of ruminant feeding because it is extremely difficult to diagnose deficiencies of these elements. This is especially the case when there are sub-optimal deficiencies and consequently…

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Livestock production: Trace elements for ruminants

Question: Why are trace elements important to ruminants? 7 trace elements are officially recognised by the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Research Council (NRC) as being essential for normal production and reproduction. They are: Zinc (Zn) Manganese (Mn) Selenium (Se) Copper (Cu) Cobalt (Cb) Iron (Fe)…

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