Proper Colostrum Handling and Storage

The numbers of bacteria in colostrum can double every 20 minutes.    When calves are fed colostrum with a high bacteria count, the IgG is poorly absorbed and the calf’s risk of failure of passive transfer is increased.    Proper collection, handling, and storage of colostrum are critically important to reduce the risk of bacterial contamination and growth. Collect and handle colostrum in a clean manner. Wash the udder and teats well before collecting colostrum. Buckets, pails, milking equipment and feeding utensils should be cleaned with detergent and hot water and then sanitized. Filter colostrum to remove debris. Store colostrum in closed, sanitized containers. If colostrum is not going to be fed immediately then cool to <40◦F as soon as possible. Colostrum storage: Colostrum can be stored for 1-2 days at room temperature but the risk of bacterial growth is high. Colostrum can be refrigerated for up to 7 days. Frozen colostrum can be stored in a freezer for up to 1 year. Freeze in 1 or 2 quart bags—double bag to prevent leaking Thaw on low heat. Avoid using microwave ovens to thaw. Use a warm water bath ( <140◦F) to thaw colostrum. Sources supplied on request. For an alternative to maternal colostrum, check out ANC’s Calf Armor 150, a colostrum replacer with 150g of globulin protein per feeding.  ...

Visit Us at the WPS Farm Show

If you are attending the WPS Farm Show in Oshkosh, WI March 26-28, be sure to stop by Booth #5518 to visit us and sign up to win the exclusive Calf Armor Larry Schultz painting or a pouch of Calf Armor 150 Colostrum...

Don’t Overlook Moisture Variation in the Diet

There’s only one thing a cow loves more than a comfortable place to rest and that’s a consistent, well-balanced diet. Nothing gets that milking machine running smoother than delivering the same ration at the same time every single day. Rumen function is optimized when there are little to no changes in the amount, timing, and type of feeds consumed. Even small swings in rumen pH can throw a cow off her game and thus reduce profit potential. One of the most commonly overlooked areas of ration inconsistency is also one of the easiest to correct. Moisture variation in forages causes over- or under-feeding of valuable feedstuffs and, therefore, uncertainty in forage inventory and predicted consumption. If the dry matter intake is unknown, the diet cannot be balanced accurately and, consequently, imprecise rations leave milk on the table.  How to detect moisture variation: Forage looks or feels more wet or dry as compared to previous samples or observed feedouts. Changes in when or where a forage was harvested are known and anticipated. Mixing for more or less cows than are in the pen. Increase in refusals due to diminished palatability because a ration is too dry or too wet. Moistures can be checked at the farm level faster than by submitting a sample to a forage analysis lab. If you think the overall quality of the forage has changed, it would be recommended to send a sample to a lab for a more complete analysis. Here are some instructions from the National Forage Testing Association for using a microwave to dry down forage samples if a koster tester or other...

Consulting at ANC

ANC’s most important resource is the people who work there. One particular group of the great people at ANC is the consultants. Tim Sherven, consultant and ration analyst, gives us an insider’s view on consulting and what it took to get there. Tim grew up on his family’s dairy farm in New Glarus, Wis. where he developed his interests in dairy and nutrition. He graduated from UW-Platteville in May of 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in animal science with agricultural business and dairy science emphases. He had completed an internship with the Sauk City Dairy Forage Research Center for a summer during college which added to his experience. Tim knew he wanted to work in nutrition and started working at ANC as a Ration Analyst immediately after graduation. For a year and a half, Tim worked strictly as a ration analyst. He then slowly started consulting one day per week. As Tim gained more confidence and customers, he also expanded his knowledge about how to work with people. Through consulting, Tim has learned valuable consulting techniques as well as how to help a farmer improve their overall operation. He cites the dairy challenge competition in college for helping him to realize just how many variables there are on a farm. “I thought I had a good sense of nutrition leaving college,” he remembers. “But once I started with ANC, I quickly realized there was a lot more to be learned.” Tim credits ANC and other consultants, staff and farmers for helping him to become the consultant he is today. Tim says ANC has trained him well as a consultant...

PUFAs and How They Affect Milk Fat %

What are PUFAs? PUFA stands for poly-unsaturated fatty acid.  The prefix poly- means that these fatty acids have more than one double bond.  The most common PUFAs we encounter are C18:2 (Linoleic Acid) and C18:3 (Linolenic Acid).  The 18 means that fatty acid is 18 carbons long and the 2 or 3 means it has 2 or 3 double bonds between the carbon atoms. How do PUFAs affect butterfat? PUFAs are toxic to rumen bacteria.  While in the rumen, PUFAs have to convert from 18:2 and 18:3 to 18:0 (Steric Acid), through a detoxifying act called biohydrogenation.  If the rumen pH is low, it will cause 18:2 or 18:3 to create an intermediate (c10-t12 TFA) that is a known cause of milk fat depression. What can we do about it? One of the best ways to determine if the ration may cause milk fat depression is to know the PUFA load.  Rations with ≥500-600g PUFA or ≥2.2%DM are at risk.  The higher the PUFA load, the higher the risk.  Common feeds that are high in PUFAs are roasted and raw soybeans, expeller soybeans, distillers, cottonseed and corn.  If a herd is at risk of experiencing milk fat depression, reduce the PUFA load and be conscious of low rumen pH and PUFA interactions.  Rumensin can further decrease milk fat percentage if there is a high PUFA load.  Research at Clemson University showed that feeding Potassium Carbonate can reduce the amount of c10-t12 produced, and can help increase milk fat percentage. Talk with your ANC Consultant to determine if PUFAs may be affecting your milk fat percentage.  ...