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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Feeding Supplemental Fat to Mature Cows

Authors
item Bellows, Robert
item Grings, Elaine
item Phelps, David - MAES
item Bellows, Susan
item Geary, Thomas
item Simms, Dan - CONSOLIDATED NUTRITION

Submitted to: Journal of Animal Science Supplement
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: June 1, 2000
Publication Date: June 1, 2000
Citation: BELLOWS, R.A., GRINGS, E.E., PHELPS, D.A., BELLOWS, S.E., GEARY, T.W., SIMMS, D.D. FEEDING SUPPLEMENTAL FAT TO MATURE COWS. JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE SUPPLEMENT. 2000. v. 78(Suppl. 1). p. 228.

Interpretive Summary: Multiparous, crossbred cows (n=140; ages 3-8 yr) grazing winter range forage and calving in Feb or April received 1 of 3 supplements during late gestation: 1, C, Control 1.4 kg pelleted alfalfa daily; 2, T, self- fed fat supplement in 102 kg plastic tubs; 3, B, fat supplement fed every-other-day in 15 kg compressed blocks. Supplement compositions (DM basis) were: C, 22.0% protein (P), 1.5% fat (F); T, 21.9% P, 25.9% F; B, 22.4% P, 14.2% F; fat was from safflower seeds. Cow weights and condition scores were obtained during the study; estrous cyclicity at begin breeding was determined by P4 in blood; breeding was synchronized with injected PG given 5 d after begin breeding; pregnancy was based on ultrasound. Calf data included: birth wt, calving ease (CE), sex, and weaning wt. Supplement feeding averaged 77.5+/-7.1 d prepartum. Effects of delivery system and fat on dam precalving weights or condition scores and calf birth wt or CE scores were nonsignificant. Supplement consumption in B cows was uniform, but consumption by T cows varied from 0 to 4.5 kg (estimated) daily. T cows had higher post calving (P=0.09) and prebreeding (P<0.05) condition scores than C or B cows. C cows had higher (P=0.06) prebreeding P4 concentrations (1.5, 1.2, & 0.8 ng/mL, C, T, & B, resp.), but estrous cyclicity was not affected by fat or season. Cyclicity at begin breeding (P=0.08) and final pregnancy % (P=0.06) were affected by the calving season x delivery group interaction which suggested cows calving in Feb followed by limited forage postpartum benefitted from fat supplement, but cows calving in April did not. We conclude effects of feeding fat during gestation are modified by forage availability postpartum and response in cows may differ from heifers.

Technical Abstract: Multiparous, crossbred cows (n=140; ages 3-8 yr) grazing winter range forage and calving in Feb or April received 1 of 3 supplements during late gestation: 1, C, Control 1.4 kg pelleted alfalfa daily; 2, T, self- fed fat supplement in 102 kg plastic tubs; 3, B, fat supplement fed every-other-day in 15 kg compressed blocks. Supplement compositions (DM basis) were: C, 22.0% protein (P), 1.5% fat (F); T, 21.9% P, 25.9% F; B, 22.4% P, 14.2% F; fat was from safflower seeds. Cow weights and condition scores were obtained during the study; estrous cyclicity at begin breeding was determined by P4 in blood; breeding was synchronized with injected PG given 5 d after begin breeding; pregnancy was based on ultrasound. Calf data included: birth wt, calving ease (CE), sex, and weaning wt. Supplement feeding averaged 77.5+/-7.1 d prepartum. Effects of delivery system and fat on dam precalving weights or condition scores and calf birth wt or CE scores were nonsignificant. Supplement consumption in B cows was uniform, but consumption by T cows varied from 0 to 4.5 kg (estimated) daily. T cows had higher post calving (P=0.09) and prebreeding (P<0.05) condition scores than C or B cows. C cows had higher (P=0.06) prebreeding P4 concentrations (1.5, 1.2, & 0.8 ng/mL, C, T, & B, resp.), but estrous cyclicity was not affected by fat or season. Cyclicity at begin breeding (P=0.08) and final pregnancy % (P=0.06) were affected by the calving season x delivery group interaction which suggested cows calving in Feb followed by limited forage postpartum benefitted from fat supplement, but cows calving in April did not. We conclude effects of feeding fat during gestation are modified by forage availability postpartum and response in cows may differ from heifers.

Last Modified: 4/23/2014
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