When the summer rains arrive, livestock owners can face a considerable challenge from many different directions. They need to be aware of the weather forecast at all times in case of flooding and so that they can move their animals to higher ground at short notice when needed. However, they may also need to vary the way that they feed their animals, as these conditions can affect not just the food that is put down, but the health and welfare of the cattle and sheep as well. If you're scratching your head with the approach of bad weather, how should you plan appropriately?
Both sheep and cattle can face the same type of problem if they have to stand in very wet conditions for a protracted period of time. You should consider using a zinc supplement as an addition to their feed, as this will make them more resistant to becoming lame through a boost to the immune system. Zinc is known to help fight off the bacteria that leads to these issues, but it is always a good idea to include a variety of mineral supplementation throughout the year, as this will make the animal's constitution more resistant to change.
Keeping Food Palatable
Nevertheless, you must also address how you deliver the stock and make sure that it remains palatable even during the worst of the weather. If you don't, many of those minerals and supplements may leach out to the ground beneath or prove to be less attractive to the animals as they try to eat during a heavy downpour.
Watching Those Pests
As if these challenges weren't enough, you also need to consider how bugs may affect your sheep in the growing period and treat this accordingly. When the grass is greenest and grows to full-length, flies can become a serious issue and especially the variety that may cause an outbreak of "pink eye." It may be necessary to vaccinate some animals or treat others to try and avoid the problem becoming endemic.
Still Unsure What to Do?
No matter what time of year it is, there is always some challenge ahead and especially when it comes to the quality, substance and delivery of your foodstuffs. If you have some issues that are still unresolved or are unsure how to proceed, ask for advice from your stock feed providers well in advance of season arrival.Share