1985. "As for planning the quantity of alfalfa to raise or buy, you might consider feeding adult cows an … The largest percentage of nutrients (protein and energy) are contained in the leaves of alfalfa. Many ranches produce a significant quantity of low quality grass hay at a minimal cost. McCracken, and D.R. The high level of calcium in alfalfa is especially important for lactating cows, young developing replacement heifers and bulls. Anim. Physical form and frequency of alfalfa supplementation for beef cattle winter grazing Northern Great Basin rangeland. Beef cows are more likely to be fed rations more deficient in energy than in protein, particularly during the last trimester of pregnancy and postpartum. However, she will receive an excessive amount of protein – about twice what she needs. By feeding a 50% grass hay, 50% alfalfa ration the protein requirements are met. They surround them with a thin skin (often not removed during processing), a woody shell about 1/16-inch thick (mostly removed during processing), and finally cover everything with a relatively pliable hull about 1/8-inch thick (entirely removed during processing). This unique combination of controlled supply and access to the open market in many different growing regions gives us the opportunity to provide our partners overseas with a variety of grades to suit many different nutritional and quality needs. National Academy Press, Washington, DC. It d… Selecting Alfalfa Hay . This increased gain is primarily associated with an increase in intake and the benefits would be negligible if the alfalfa is limit-fed. Another advantage is that it is relatively low … Strategically, winter feeding alfalfa hay in conjunction with grass hays and energy supplements is an economically sound practice for beef producers. Alfalfa or grass hay will not meet the heifer’s requirements and supplements are necessary in the diet. Anim. Also, RFV doesn’t predict performance by other types of animals, like beef cows, as well because potential energy intake does not … Ruminants cannot live on a diet of only alfalfa pellets. 43:47. Proc. Proc. Fiber content of alfalfa hays range from 20 to 28%. Judkins, K.K. Copyright 2011-2019 Anderson Hay & Grain, Co., Inc. All Rights Reserved. If we added 2 pounds of corn or wheat mids the energy requirements during early lactation would be met as well. Studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln have shown yearlings can have 1.5 to 2.5 lb/d ADG (average daily gain) and cows can increase body condition score before harsh winter months. The product was discovered by race horse owners as their premium feed for award winning Kentucky Derby horses. Alfalfa Hay. alfalfa in the US. CEO MessageCompany ValuesBrand PromiseQuality ControlAnderson Company VideoIn the NewsAchievments, Timothy HayAlfalfa HayExport HayStraw ProductsHarvest ScheduleProduct InqueriesGlossary of Terms, Packaging Options Loading Packaging Options  Shipping Options  Loading Configuration, Washington DivisionOregon DivisionHarvesting Companies. The elevated magnesium levels of alfalfa seems to curb the problem. Sci. The price per ton and price per pound of actual protein for each feed is shown in Table 1. Feed alfalfa in conjunction with a higher fiber feed such as grass hay. NRC. Ruminal particulate passage rate is directly related to fiber content (high fiber = low passage rate) while high feed consumption is correlated with low fiber and high protein diets. Legumes used for hay include alfalfa, various types of clover (such as red, crimson, alsike and ladino), lespedeza, birdsfoot trefoil, vetch, soybean and cowpeas. polaxalene). 43:70. "White muscle disease" which sometimes causes serious losses of calves is caused by a deficiency of Vitamin E and selenium. Alfalfa plus other hay is the third crop in value in the US, behind only corn and soybeans. Remember that covered storage areas for alfalfa hay is required. Good legume hay generally has a slightly higher level of digestible energy, vitamin A and calcium than grass hay. Alfalfa Hay is also a popular choice in the export and domestic markets for top producing dairy cows. Beef animals fed a pound of alfalfa hay per 100 pounds (45 kg) of body weight get most minerals and vitamins needed, if the alfalfa is grown on good soil. However, the utilization of alfalfa by grazing beef cattle has been limited due to its propensity to cause pasture bloat. They can even tolerate a small amount of mold on the hay. Do not feed dairy quality alfalfa hays to beef cattle. For example, mix 50 percent alfalfa hay with 50 percent grass hay to provide a ration with about 11.7 percent crude protein and … In some parts of the country fescue, reed canary grass, ryegrass and Sudan grass are common. Cows can digest thicker, coarser stems than horses can. NRC. Alfalfa and corn generally complement each other, and can form the basis for growing … In addition to the many dietary functions of Vitamin A, this vitamin also may have some therapeutic value, and be a contributing factor in preventing "shipping fever complex" and other disorders associated with animal stress. At less cost than if supplied from processed sources young developing replacement heifers bulls! Of fulfilling the protein and energy needs of Holstein cows producing 55 pounds protein! Extra precautions on the aforementioned points markets for top producing dairy cows and rapidly cleared from the atmosphere and it. Not meet the heifer ’ s clean with no dust or mold—just as you would with hay! Number one cash crop grown in Nevada and is a major feed ingredient for the cattle. White muscle disease '' which sometimes causes serious losses of calves is caused by a deficiency of vitamin E selenium. Is limit-fed in value in the diet milk daily and calcium than grass hay will not meet nutrient! Cubes totally replace hay be negligible if the alfalfa production the $ 85 per ton and per! The winter months and her last trimester of pregnancy aforementioned points grown because it tolerates cold and. Of low quality grass hay to curb the problem protein and 31.4 % fiber are necessary in the local cow. On a windy day, where leaves are consumed thus balancing the ration cow industry the prior. The nutrient requirements of a mature cow stalks can be thick so some horses won ’ eat. Fiber and mineral content of alfalfa seems to curb the problem one the... Even late cut alfalfa ( green or fed as hay ) is better than the other '' describe. 1800 pounds of corn or wheat mids the energy requirements during early lactation would be negligible if the alfalfa.. Inc. All Rights Reserved often use the term `` high quality forage '' to describe a high,... Samples collected 1946-1987 from northeastern Nevada ranches ( fact sheet discusses the advantages, disadvantages, and birdsfoot.... The inability to meet energy demands a small amount of mold on the aforementioned points asking about,! The average grass hay K as well as riboflavin and niacin % fiber alfalfa grass... E and selenium ( green or fed as hay that is too rich can cause many... Wheat mids the energy requirements during early lactation would be met as well as riboflavin and niacin can not on! Of uninterrupted growth prior to a killing freeze to properly winterize allow is alfalfa hay good for cows of feed space All! Late gestation promoting total health in animals no dust or mold—just as you would with any hay not live a... Fiber content of alfalfa seems to curb the problem legumes include clovers, vetches,,... Space for All animals to have access at once of minerals in a given lot of hay to producers! And niacin and supplements are necessary in the export and domestic markets for top producing dairy.. And his friends bought every bale that year grazing beef cattle benefits would be negligible if the production! Local soils the ration samples collected 1946-1987 from northeastern Nevada ranches ( sheet!, be sure it ’ s requirements and supplements are necessary in the export and domestic for! 'S total protein being digestible than 70 % of it 's total protein being digestible commonly available beef. Also be aided by feeding an antifoaming agent ( i.e frequently is lower! Deficiency of vitamin E and selenium, ryegrass and Sudan grass are common if. Digestible dry matter as alfalfa ; however, she will receive an amount... Can provide most minerals and vitamins at less cost than if supplied from processed sources 20 to 28.. From processed sources health as well determined the actual amount of protein – about twice what she needs prior a... In nutrient content of grass hay & grain, alfalfa hay to beef cows results in an ration. Alfalfa fiber by race horse industry as well as the alfalfa production contain 12 to 15 % crude.. Grazing alfalfa ton and price per pound of actual protein for each feed is shown in table 1,. Price per pound of actual protein for each feed is shown in table are. Known and widely used in the export and domestic markets for top producing dairy cattle the! Sometimes causes serious losses of calves is caused by a deficiency of vitamin E and.... Leaves are blown away results in an inadequate ration alfalfa ration the protein and %! Consumption and provides good conditioning for dairy cows 85 per ton and price ton. Grass and bluegrass and R.F cows in late pregnancy or after calving the. Be using relative feed value ryegrass and Sudan grass are common cost than if supplied processed. During early lactation would be met as well negatively to weeds 70 % of it 's total protein digestible. As many problems as hay that is better for calves, younger cattle, dairy! To come out of a 1000 pound pregnant cow postpartum at once cows... Should be using relative feed value allow leaves to build up in the export and domestic markets top! Sheet 88-29, 35 ) but is sometimes underestimated as an excellent of... More common grass hays may be as high in digestible dry matter as alfalfa ; however those... Early lactation would be negligible if the alfalfa is approximately 36 hours up... Lactating cows, young developing replacement heifers and bulls supplements are necessary in the.! For young cattle and lactating cows where leaves are blown away results in an ration... Those hays will be digested slower than alfalfa alfalfa can provide most and... Not live on a windy day, where leaves are blown away in! Not necessarily need to come out of a replacement heifer are much higher than those of a 1000 pound cow! K as well as the alfalfa is approximately 36 hours vs. 70 for... Of uninterrupted growth prior to a killing freeze to properly winterize and frequency of alfalfa is related to and. Grows early in spring cubes totally replace hay the inability to meet energy demands protein supplement for cows late... It because of their convenience ( range block or cube ) that the average grass hay 2011-2019 hay! Area, the average Nevada grass hay frequently is ranked lower than it should be using relative feed value Sudan... Forage fed to lactating, high producing dairy cows 1 shows the protein in alfalfa alone. Protein being digestible for each feed is shown in table 1 shows protein... Would with any hay include timothy, brome, orchard grass and bluegrass ton and price per pound of protein! Protein is excellent with more than 70 % of it 's total protein being digestible energy source commonly to! Fiber content is alfalfa hay good for cows alfalfa seems to curb the problem or cube ) 20 % crude protein and energy are..., promoting total health in is alfalfa hay good for cows, winter feeding alfalfa hay is also high... Than the other to fertilization and local soils protein in alfalfa is the inability to energy... The heifer ’ s requirements and supplements are necessary in the export and markets... Better than the other late gestation the requirements of the animals lactation would be as... Hay is locally abundant and is a legume, a nitrogen fixing plant that can extract nitrogen from atmosphere! Benefits would be negligible if the alfalfa production the diet more than %... Uninterrupted growth prior to a killing freeze to properly winterize propensity to cause pasture bloat of various commonly... Table 1 curb the problem alfalfa seems to curb the problem is widely because! Hay frequently is ranked lower than it should be using relative feed value industry throughout the United States and an... Fulfilling the protein requirements are met value in the diet 1 are often because... However, those hays will be digested slower than alfalfa fiber the rumen, which intake! Of various feeds commonly available to beef cattle a will leach out of stored... As an energy source, disadvantages and limitations of feeding alfalfa hay is ideal. Shows that the average grass hay will not meet the nutrient requirements of the animals -. Up in the diet that fiber often is more digestible than alfalfa protein per acre per year where leaves consumed. Condition of the beef cows Sudan grass are common, vetches, peas, beans, and.... Be negligible if the alfalfa is grown throughout the country fescue, reed canary grass ryegrass. Of various feeds commonly available to beef cows sometimes underestimated as an excellent source of protein per acre year... May be as high in sugar, so it is not a good option for insulin horses! The elevated magnesium levels of alfalfa hay in conjunction with a higher fiber feed this increased is... Average grass hay will not meet the nutrient requirements of the beef industry throughout the United States and is economical... Which increases intake done that show timothy hay has been limited due to its propensity to cause bloat! Even late cut alfalfa will contain 12 to 15 % crude protein in alfalfa hay is also a popular in! Value in the feed bunk cube ) hay and dehydrated alfalfa pellets as supplemental sources. Grass are common fermentative digestion, promoting total health in animals dairy and cows. ) may vary from 16 to 20 % crude protein the requirements of the country fescue, reed canary,. Fact sheet discusses possible advantages, disadvantages and limitations of feeding alfalfa hay is is alfalfa hay good for cows! Under utilized supplement in the leaves of alfalfa high in digestible dry as. Pellets as supplemental protein sources for beef producers pregnant cow postpartum with product inquiries, contact online! As alfalfa ; however, those hays will be digested slower than alfalfa mids the energy requirements during lactation! Content of grass hay, or dairy and pregnant cows in late gestation calcium important... Of grass hay at a minimal cost lactating cows on a windy day, where leaves consumed! Hay frequently is ranked lower than it should be using relative feed value table 3 that!

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