Cow Ranch Husbandry

Cattle ranching is one of the most essential agricultural enterprises. For thousand of years, human beings have been domesticating cattle mainly for meat and milk. However after the industrial evolution the cattle industry evolved to a vast technological industry where cattle breeding provided not only meat and milk but also provided traction, leather and other products. Due to increasing demand for cattle products breeders need to understand the right type of cattle to breed because not all cattle can thrive at any given place.

What is most important in determining the healthy being of your breed is the type of food you give to your animals. There are primarily various types of fodder or forage that cattle consume. In addition there are also various systems that can be used to convert this foods to the desired proteins the cattle need. Grass is the most natural fodder cattle may need since it contains majority of the supplements. In order to boost the energy density of cattle they may be given little hay supplements, with soy mineral,salt, vitamin salt, by-product.

Cows per acre is essential when it comes to cattle breading. Cattle should not be over crowded. Overcrowding may reduce the quality of breeds farmers keep. There are various factors that determine the number of acres cattle can thrive on. This includes, the soil type,climate and micro-climate, the rainfall amount and its annual distribution,how you rotate your cows, the type of grass available in the ranch etc. Persons with more land have different pasture dynamics compared to those with small land. This is due to the fact that the one with vast land can rotate the cattle. Animal rotation gives pastures more time to rest between feeding periods.

There is surely no right number of cows that can be kept in a given piece of land. Different places may vary hugely hence it is typical to conduct a good survey of your land and understand the factors surrounding its environment well. High altitude ares are for most often considered to be the perfect conditions for cattle breeding, an approximate of 25 cows per acre. In low altitude areas such as coastal surroundings it is advisable not to keep more than 5 cows per acre.

Where the land is vast a farmer can also perform a free range method of feeding. This is whereby cattle roam freely for at least part of the day contrary to the all day enclosure. Many may prefer this method due to its natural characteristics. Naturally provided grass contains little or no chemicals compared to mixed fodder and forage hence for the person consuming the meat or milk this means less fossil fuels ingestion into the body.

Different breads of cattle thrive differently in different climates. There breeds that do well in cool climates that would not do well in hot climate. Breeds that survive in cool climate are often marketable due to the numerous use of its products including its long fur due to its adaptation to cool climates. Cattle breeds include, Belted Galloway, Charolais Cattle, Hereford Cattle, Shorthorn Cattle, Angus, Limousin Dexter, Belgian, Friesian, etc.

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Alfaculture- Innovative Technology For Production Of Hydroponic Green Fodder

Alfaculture- Innovative Technology For Production Of Hydroponic Green Fodder

Hydroponic green fodder production or Alfculture is the most viable option for feeding sheep, goats and other livestock. The interest worldwide is increasing for hydroponic fodder as a feedstuff for sheep, goats, and other livestock. As all are aware of, Hyroponics is the science of soilless farming; it is the method of growing plants without soil. Only moisture and nutrients are provided to the growing plants. Hydroponic growing systems produce a greater yield over a shorter period of time in a smaller area than traditionally-grown crops.

Hydroponic green fodder production system or Alfaculture is a year-round growing system that produces a consistent quantity and quality of livestock feed or green fodders regardless of weather conditions.

Green Fodder units are usually used to sprout cereal grains, such as barley, oats, wheat, sorghum, and corn, or legumes, such as alfalfa, clover, or cow peas. Barley is the most commonly grown forage, because it usually gives the best yield of nutrients.

Green Fodder units also usually consist of a framework of shelves on which metal or plastic trays are stacked. After soaking overnight, a layer of seeds is spread over the base of the trays. During the growing period, the seeds are kept moist, but not saturated. They are supplied with moisture and nutrients, usually via drip or spray irrigation. Holes in the trays facilitate drainage and the waste water is collected in a tank.

The seeds will usually sprout within 24 hours and in 5 to 8 days have produced a 6 to 8 inch high grass mat. After the mat is removed from the tray, it can go into a feed mixer or be hand-fed to livestock. Livestock will eat the whole thing: seeds, roots, and grass. There is minimal waste.

Alfaculture units can be set up in any building, including a garage or basement, a greenhouse is ideal because temperature, light, and humidity can be precisely controlled. Efficient, year-round production of green fodder is possible under optimal environmental conditions; approximately 70°F, 60 percent humidity, and 16 hours of light can produce maximum yields.

This is a technology that if researched is mostly relevant in India, but with the growth of Hydroponics in the U.S I can see this technology moving forward here as well. What a cool idea to be at the forefront of for your ranch!

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