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Seeking some supplement advice....

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Shortgrass

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Because drought conditions made me stay on what has always been winter grass, and late moisture did finally bring some grass to summer range, I am faced with running cattle 20 miles from home early this winter. Due to distance, I am real interested in using lick tubs or liquid supplement to help the cows utilize grass better. I have always fed cake each day, but the 20 mile drive each way dictates I look at other management methods (tubs or liquids come to mind). How do tubs & liquids compare, what has been successful for some of you guys? What products are good or not too good? What nutritional faqs do I need to watch? Maybe I'll learn something good out of this. Thanks......
 

littlejoe

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Shortgrass said:
Because drought conditions made me stay on what has always been winter grass, and late moisture did finally bring some grass to summer range, I am faced with running cattle 20 miles from home early this winter. Due to distance, I am real interested in using lick tubs or liquid supplement to help the cows utilize grass better. I have always fed cake each day, but the 20 mile drive each way dictates I look at other management methods (tubs or liquids come to mind). How do tubs & liquids compare, what has been successful for some of you guys? What products are good or not too good? What nutritional faqs do I need to watch? Maybe I'll learn something good out of this. Thanks......

A thing I like about tubs is you can scatter a ton up to 8 different places, suck them up on top of hills, far corners, etc---with a board you can reload one by yourself, or balehandlers and a little rope and plunk them right on.

Liquid I used was quite a bit cheaper, it's more of a hassle to put out and move. Some outfits encourage feeding it in open tanks--stuffs far too spendy for me to let snow, rain, dust and crap contaminate it. I used lick tanks with wheels. Only problem I ever saw was grizzly bear got on top licking one, caved the whole top in.
You can get rumensin added to liquid.
Sometimes it's hard to control consumption.

Tubs get harder when it's cold and consumption drops--right when you'd like them to maybe eat a little more.

Moorman's 'roughage buster' with --I think--biurut--was very well liked by some people who used it---think they still make it, also plum spendy.

I imagine you're wanting protein---when I do the math, I can't justify either liquid or tubs. And most of the hi protein ones use lots of whatta ya callit--non protein nitrogen, urea, ?? I ain't a fan. I use good alf hay, fed every 3rd day. I've seen studys where cake fed every 3rd day also works.

When I used to feed cake, I had a pull type fert spreader---you can buy them pretty cheap---took off the motor, spinners, etc, rigged up a little spring loaded dump that would overcenter when it got about a scoop shovel full in it, maybe every 40'. It held several ton, my cows winter about 10 miles down the road, the cake plant was another 15---feeder stayed out where cows were. Then them guys got to figgering their 'assembly costs' were more than the costs of the nutrients in the cake, so i bagged that idea.
Now I feed 18-20% "all natural" ---it's got strings around it, I get it out behind the barn. I do love tubs--just can't afford to feed them.
 

Lonecowboy

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Loomix is a great product but it is only as good as the distributer is.

a good distributor can control consumption and make it work the way you want it to.

a poor distributor is like a yo-yo

tank full, tank empty, tank full, tank empty for several days, tank full, etc.
 

loomixguy

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Lonecowboy said:
Loomix is a great product but it is only as good as the distributer is.

a good distributor can control consumption and make it work the way you want it to.

a poor distributor is like a yo-yo

tank full, tank empty, tank full, tank empty for several days, tank full, etc.

AMEN, Brotha!

Cooked or pressed tubs are going to retail for anywhere between $70-100/tub, or $700-$1000/ton. Zero consumption control, hard to handle, must pick up empty tubs or your place will look pretty trashy, and, EXPENSIVE.

Cubes will run anywhere from $500/ton and up, depending on ingredients, etc. Must be delivered, whether it's every day, every 2 days, etc. You can put out 2 pounds per head, but the boss cows will still get more than their share while the more timid cows get less than they require. There is always a mob scene when you put it out, and within a short time the rumen bugs you fed have died off and there is nothng out there to excite the next generation of rumen bugs. It takes 2 pounds of cubes to equal the energy found in one pound of LOOMIX. You are paying for fines, whether you buy bagged or bulk, they must be stored (barn or bins), and, most folks invest in a hopper of some kind to mount on a pickup. This equipment can and does wear out over time, plus, it's kinda spendy to buy in the first place.

Unlike other liquids out there, LOOMIX is consumption controlled. In my area, I charge .27 cents/pound. Normal feeding rate this time of year is 1-1.5 pounds per head/day. Bitter is 25% protein, sweet is 12% with 3% urea added to both, and both "flavors" contain the same chelated mineral package. The dealer should provide the troughs free of charge, and move the troughs as you move the cattle, again, free of charge. There is no competition for the LOOMIX, so even the timid cows get their share. Cattle will generally hit the trough several times a day to get their fill, instead of drinking it right down like it's sweet tea. LOOMIX has received a patent for fiber digestion. We digest 34% more fiber than any other product on the market. This means your cattle will get more out of your poorer quality forages than they would otherwise. I've had cows put on 2 full body condition scores in the fall on nothing but CRP grass and LOOMIX. LOOMIX is available with IGR for summer fly control. Various other things can be added to the liquid, especially chelated mag in the spring to control grass tetany. Some meds can also be added with no problems, but they may not be cleared to add by the Feds. LOOMIX is heavier than water, so any snow or rain finding its way into the trough will rest on top, be drank off, and you are right back to the good stuff. It does not freeze, and will pump and flow at -40F.

I've been doing this for 15 years. If it didn't work, I wouldn't be selling it. Lonecowboy is 110% correct...it all comes down to dealer service. Poor dealers don't stay in business very long.

I don't know where in Colorado you are, but LOOMIX is headquartered in Johnstown, CO. We have some wonderful dealers out there, among them Monte Vista Co-op in Monte Vista, there's a good dealer right in Johnstown, can't think of the name of the dealer in Sterling right now, and my good friends Barb & Gale Martin at Bob Walter LOOMIX in La Junta.

LOOMIX was purchased by ADM this past June. It has been a good fit for all involved. We also have access to the dry line offered by ADM. Of course, for a couple of years now LOOMIX has also offered it's own line of mineral and tubs. We are also introducing a high fat liquid this fall for folks who need more energy. I think the website is still www.loomix.com. Look it up and feel free to call the toll free number at headquarters. Any of the friendly folks there can answer any questions you may have and will let you know who your closest dealer is.

Good Luck!
 

loomixguy

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Forgot to mention...through ADM we can now offer 0% feeder finance. The due date is either 12 months or when you market your cattle, whichever comes first. That's like a $30-$60/ton discount for some folks. I don't believe any other feed company is offering a 0% program like that...darn sure no other liquid company! That is good for any cattle products ADM has....tubs, mineral, cubes, LOOMIX, weaning feed, etc.!
 

BRG

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We have used Loomix and have been happy with the results. In the past we had 2 tanks full and put it out ourselves. One tank was sweet and the other is bitter. We just changed it and controlled as needed.
 

flyingS

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How often do you check your cows and how much protein do you feel they need to keep them balanced? I am probably going to get ridiculed for the next comment. If you go check your cows once a week anyway, have you considered caking once a week? I have had good luck caking once a week with mature cows. Of course it depends how many lbs of cake you are feeding and number of cows as well as how much you can carry. It would make a difference as well if you still have calves on them and how long you plan on leaving them on. If you have calves maybe you should creep the calves which will take some of the load off the cows.
 

Faster horses

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I'm with littlejoe on this.
The more you can feed that you raise on your ranch the better.
And as we talked beore, $100 ton for alfalfa hay is the
cheapest protein you can buy. And you can feed it a couple
times a week--just feed enough of it.

Convenience is expensive.
 

Hayguy

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Faster horses said:
I'm with littlejoe on this.
The more you can feed that you raise on your ranch the better.
And as we talked beore, $100 ton for alfalfa hay is the
cheapest protein you can buy. And you can feed it a couple
times a week--just feed enough of it.

Convenience is expensive.


how much is enough?
 

flyingS

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It obviously depends on how many cows your are trying to feed. Sometimes you just can not haul enough feed to make it pay. If you compare a vitalix tub to cubes in our area the cost per lb of protein is about 2.35/lb for vitalix compared to about .85 or .90/lb for cake. I considered all of the factors involved and put out vitalix tubs, I hate it, the only advantage to them is I have the equipment to feed them. I don't own the cows so I am not going to buy equipment for short term use.
 

flyingS

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If your cows need .3lb of protein per day supplemented and your alfalfa test at 14% your cows will need a little over 2lbs/day to meet their requirements. Fed twice a week would be 7 lbs of alfalfa/hd. Depending on your conditions they may need more or less to meet requirements.
 

Faster horses

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Probably 15# every third day. The rumen microbes will keep going
for a couple of days, and remember, we are feeding the rumen here,
not the cow. :D So giving 15# every third day would be like giving
5# every day. If the hay is 18% protein, take out 10% for moisture
(10% is just a guess on my part--remember moisture contains no nutrition) that would
be 5 lb. - 10%=4.5 lbs. dry matter x 18%=.81 lbs. protein daily.
The requirement is 1.6 lbs protein for a DRY COW so if the cows eat 20 lbs.of grass at 5% protein, you have met their requirements.

Now a cow with a sucking calf is a different story. Her requirement
is 2.5 lbs. protein so they would need more supplement.

I would guess that the cows would eat more than 20 lbs. of grass
per day, especially when you add protein because that stimulates
the rumen and they can digest more. What happens with dry grass
is that it becomes undigestible so they can't eat enough of it.
If Shortgrass feeds 15# of hay every third day and his cows eat
30# of grass a day @ 5% protein they are getting 2.3# of protein.
Almost enough for a cow with a sucking calf. The thing we don't know
is how much grass they can or will eat. If there is some green
coming in the grass, that will help a bunch. In the spring here, when
the grass is green we have 18-20% protein in the grass. We know
this for a fact, because we have tested it.

Anyhow, hope this helps!
 

Soapweed

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Oldtimer said:
On Cake- why feed cake if it is so costly :???: Run only the cattle that can survive/thrive on the pasture or hay available- and then that additional cost is not there if its unprofitable :???: ...Run cattle genetics that can efficiently survive in bad years/thrive in good years....

If we were all as savvy and up to snuff in our ranching abilities as Oldtimer, this "extra supplement" conversation wouldn't even need to take place. :roll: :?
 
A

Anonymous

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Soapweed said:
Oldtimer said:
On Cake- why feed cake if it is so costly :???: Run only the cattle that can survive/thrive on the pasture or hay available- and then that additional cost is not there if its unprofitable :???: ...Run cattle genetics that can efficiently survive in bad years/thrive in good years....

If we were all as savvy and up to snuff in our ranching abilities as Oldtimer, this "extra supplement" conversation wouldn't even need to take place. :roll: :?

My thinking is why feed cake or any other supplement if that creates a nonprofitable situation- when you can buy hay for between $55 (grass) and $85 (both first and second cutting alfalfa and alfalfa/grass mix)... Or straw at $35-40 T...

Unless they are hard doing cows- cows can survive/thrive without being fed grain supplements ... I usually see folks run into more problems- especially during calving- because of too much protein and supplements..
Cows survived for years on just forage or hay - before the Moormans, Monsanto's, Purinas, Archer Daniels Midland, etal came into business and told us they couldn't :roll: - and still can...
Not knocking cake- or some of the other supplements...They have a good use- for making forage go further...But if their price is so high as to make their use unprofitable- then its time for plan B....Find a cheaper feed...
 

katrina

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Oldtimer said:
Soapweed said:
Oldtimer said:
On Cake- why feed cake if it is so costly :???: Run only the cattle that can survive/thrive on the pasture or hay available- and then that additional cost is not there if its unprofitable :???: ...Run cattle genetics that can efficiently survive in bad years/thrive in good years....

If we were all as savvy and up to snuff in our ranching abilities as Oldtimer, this "extra supplement" conversation wouldn't even need to take place. :roll: :?

My thinking is why feed cake or any other supplement if that creates a nonprofitable situation- when you can buy hay for between $55 (grass) and $85 (both first and second cutting alfalfa and alfalfa/grass mix)... Or straw at $35-40 T...

Unless they are hard doing cows- cows can survive/thrive without being fed grain supplements ... I usually see folks run into more problems- especially during calving- because of too much protein and supplements..
Cows survived for years on just forage or hay - before the Moormans, Monsanto's, Purinas, Archer Daniels Midland, etal came into business and told us they couldn't :roll: - and still can...
Not knocking cake- or some of the other supplements...They have a good use- for making forage go further...But if their price is so high as to make their use unprofitable- then its time for plan B....

:roll: Ot...... You're are more full of crap than a outhouse..... sheesh.. Give it a rest... :roll:
 

LazyWP

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katrina said:
Oldtimer said:
Soapweed said:
If we were all as savvy and up to snuff in our ranching abilities as Oldtimer, this "extra supplement" conversation wouldn't even need to take place. :roll: :?

My thinking is why feed cake or any other supplement if that creates a nonprofitable situation- when you can buy hay for between $55 (grass) and $85 (both first and second cutting alfalfa and alfalfa/grass mix)... Or straw at $35-40 T...

Unless they are hard doing cows- cows can survive/thrive without being fed grain supplements ... I usually see folks run into more problems- especially during calving- because of too much protein and supplements..
Cows survived for years on just forage or hay - before the Moormans, Monsanto's, Purinas, Archer Daniels Midland, etal came into business and told us they couldn't :roll: - and still can...
Not knocking cake- or some of the other supplements...They have a good use- for making forage go further...But if their price is so high as to make their use unprofitable- then its time for plan B....

:roll: Ot...... You're are more full of crap than a outhouse..... sheesh.. Give it a rest... :roll:
 

Soapweed

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Oldtimer said:
Soapweed said:
Oldtimer said:
On Cake- why feed cake if it is so costly :???: Run only the cattle that can survive/thrive on the pasture or hay available- and then that additional cost is not there if its unprofitable :???: ...Run cattle genetics that can efficiently survive in bad years/thrive in good years....

If we were all as savvy and up to snuff in our ranching abilities as Oldtimer, this "extra supplement" conversation wouldn't even need to take place. :roll: :?

My thinking is why feed cake or any other supplement if that creates a nonprofitable situation- when you can buy hay for between $55 (grass) and $85 (both first and second cutting alfalfa and alfalfa/grass mix)... Or straw at $35-40 T...

Unless they are hard doing cows- cows can survive/thrive without being fed grain supplements ... I usually see folks run into more problems- especially during calving- because of too much protein and supplements..
Cows survived for years on just forage or hay - before the Moormans, Monsanto's, Purinas, Archer Daniels Midland, etal came into business and told us they couldn't :roll: - and still can...
Not knocking cake- or some of the other supplements...They have a good use- for making forage go further...But if their price is so high as to make their use unprofitable- then its time for plan B....Find a cheaper feed...

The Sandhills are noted for having "pretty good grass" but not "real good grass," as compared to "hard grass." When the railroad first came into this country in 1885, cottonseed cake was brought in from Texas to be used to supplement the range. Protein supplementation has been done around here ever since, and for a good reason. It doesn't take too many open cows or unhealthy spring calves to pay for quite a bit of feed supplement.
 

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