Newly weaned, fall-born calves are full of potential; potential for amazing gains as well as health issues. Backgrounding these calves on pasture this spring can help minimize the potential for health issues, but sometimes gain can suffer. However, with proper supplementation, including an ionophore, you can maximize growth, and ultimately returns, while minimizing the risks.
This may show that I watch a little too much reality TV, or, as a Friend calls it, “Far from reality TV”, but, I many times hear the phrase “this is a game changer”. People mining for gold in Alaska, may bring some new equipment or technology into play, and they proudly state, “This, is a game changer”, hoping to strike it rich.
The success of the CRYSTALYX® Breed-Up® family of products has been significant, and for a lot of reasons. One reason is that the Breed-Up® line provides twice the required trace minerals and vitamins for beef cattle at typical intake levels, and this makes sense to provide during the last trimester of pregnancy, and in early lactation when a cow’s nutrient requirements are the highest. Continuing a high plane of nutrition is important up to and “through the breeding season.” But just when is the breeding season through? Is it once the animal is bred; is it 45 days, 60 days? Nutrition post breeding is just as critical, if not more depending on management, types of feedstuffs/forages and/or grazing systems.
Stress is a natural part of life for both cattle and humans. Some stress is unavoidable, such as stress associated with calving or weaning. But other stresses can be lessened with careful management.
On a short term basis, stress isn’t a bad thing. Stress prepares an animal for a “fight or flight” response. Cortisol and epinephrine are released during a stress event. These hormones facilitate increased heart rate, mobilization of glucose for a quick burst of energy, decreased sensitivity to pain and the suppression of nonessential processes such as digestion.