Late spring and early summer pastures provide essential nutrients to the cowherd, as the cow cares for herself, the calf at her side and her developing fetus. During this period, pasture management is especially important as pasture forages can provide highly variable nutrient levels.
Doug Hawkins, beef cattle consultant for Purina Animal Nutrition, says pasture management beginning in early spring can directly impact the body condition score of the cow, the growth of the calf at her side and conception rates post-calving.
"Beef producers are most often familiar with supplementing pasture during late summer, as supplementation consumption rates are often highest then," Hawkins explains. "However, taking steps to offer supplements in late spring and early summer can help the cow perform consistently and help prevent imbalances before forage quality declines. Adding a proactive management program during this timeframe will promote consistent cow performance through summer."
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