Calcium is one of the most important minerals in an animal's body. It is a critical regulator of multiple physiological processes, including blood coagulation, nerve conduction, membrane permeability, muscle contraction, enzyme activity, and hormone release. Calcium is stored mostly in the animal bones with a little stored in the tissue and blood.
Animals that are bred for increased milk production like dairy cows and multiple bearing ewes will use more calcium in their colostrum and milk production than a human. In some cases, more than 4x the calcium per litre of production. Adding to that the fetus does its most explosive growth in the last trimester of the pregnancy right before the mother has their huge demand for calcium for lactation.
We now understand that if we feed the ewe/cow a diet high in magnesium before calving that we can help her to mobilise some of that calcium from her bone storage and have that ready in her blood for milk production. This approach has been successfully used in dairy farming for many years.
But can we keep going to the bone “bank” every year hoping to mobilise more calcium to help the ewe/cow dodge hypocalcaemia or milk fever?
What happens when the “bank” is empty? Then the ewe/cow is more likely to not have enough calcium stored to get through milk production and will most likely fall in a hole at giving birth or around that stage.
If we start topping up the bone “bank” before the animal starts to need her reserves, then we have a better chance of a seamless transition into lactation. Animals that give birth in the Autumn spend a lot of time over summer on supplementary feed, which is inherently low in calcium levels. Also, spring lambing/calving females spend the last part of gestation in winter where grass growth can be slow and is often pushed along with urea, which has been shown to lower the calcium level in the grass.
So how do we get a highly available easy to feed source of calcium that is going to help top up the bone “bank” for our animals? Look no further than the TPM Bovine & Flock Boost range of loose lick minerals.
With a highly concentrated source of minerals, your animals will be able to refill their bone “bank”, so it is ready to help your ewe/cow for their next lactation.
So to ensure you have the bank filled prior to calving and lambing this season, call one of our TRAC Experts and get onto TPM Bovine & Flock Boost range of pre-lambing and pre-calving products.
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