As we make our way through this extended cold snap, Dr. Mike Baker, Beef Cattle Extension Specialist at Cornell University offers the following information to best manage the beef cows during the winter months.
In response to cold, changes in behavior and physiology will cause a cow’s appetite to increase and therefore eat more feed; perhaps up to as much as 30% more. For cows with 24 hour access to good quality hay, they will adjust their intakes to reflect climatic conditions. For those on a restricted intake and/or poor quality hay, adjustments in quantity and quality will need to be made to accommodate the lower critical temperature. Reality is though that a cow can only increase her intake by no more than 30%, therefore higher quality hay or energy supplements such as corn silage, corn grain or distiller’s grain will need to be provided to meet nutrient requirements. To read entire article Out_Wintering.