With temperatures rising, Cargill is encouraging producers to adapt their cow feeding and management to reduce the effects of heat stress in their herds.
And, as part of this, it is urging producers with high yielding cows to take advantage of the cooling buffer, Equaliser CoolCow.
Made with a unique blend of internal cooling elements, including an osmolyte and rumen buffer, the supplement has been shown to help maintain feed intake and milk production and improve cow comfort.
Included in the TMR, or in compound feed, the additive helps to regulate core body temperature by hydrating the cow at the cellular level, due to the osmolyte, and by restoring the electrolyte balance. It will also support rumen function and maintain feed intake.
“Heat stress in dairy cows arises from a combination of temperature and humidity,” says the company’s Philip Ingram. “Temperatures don’t need to be particularly high, but if it’s also humid cows can be under heat stress and feel uncomfortable.
“They will alter their normal feeding and lying routines. As a result, milk yield and fertility will suffer.”
Risk of heat stress is measured with a Temperature Humidity Index (THI). High yielding cows start experiencing heat stress when the THI rises above 68. An ambient temperature of 22°C with a relative humidity of 60% equates to a THI of 68 and will trigger heat stress in cows.
Cargill is offering a free THI meter, (while stocks last) to producers who join its #CargillWeatherWatcher team on Twitter. They can tweet @ProvimiRuminant to receive a THI meter.
Meters can be placed in the shed or in a convenient corner of the yard and they will monitor temperature and humidity and display the latest THI.