Hunter Local Land Services urges cattle producers to be prepared

Spike: Local Land Services has received an increase in requests for advice about feeding livestock and water quality issues, as winter begins to take hold.
Spike: Local Land Services has received an increase in requests for advice about feeding livestock and water quality issues, as winter begins to take hold.

Hunter Local Land Services is urging local cattle producers to make sure they have firmed up their feed and water budgeting as we move deeper into winter.

With calving about to begin, producers are being reminded to check their feed plans to ensure pregnant or lactating stock are receiving adequate energy in their feed.

District vet Jane Bennett said last winter proved very difficult for many producers and it's important to learn lessons from that and better prepare for coming seasons.

"Last year we saw a lot of pregnant cows die from pregnancy toxaemia, this was directly related to the type and quality of feed they were receiving," said Dr Bennett.

"While producers may have been feeding out the right quantities, without testing the quality of feed they learned the hard way that it did not have enough energy to support pregnant or lactating stock."

Over winter the predominant coastal perennial grasses such as kikuyu, seteriia and natives deteriorate in nutritional content. Without supplementary high energy feeds such as grains and pellets breeders can lose body weight on a daily basis making it difficult for them to maintain their calf and their own life.

The entire Hunter Local Land Services region remains drought affected, with 17 per cent in intense drought.

You can reach your nearest Hunter Local Land Services office by calling 1300 795 299 to speak to agricultural extension officers, district vets or the regional drought support team.