Now is the time to ensure your trace element (TE) programme is up to scratch to enable a successful mating period in the coming months. The three most important TEs are Copper, Cobalt/B12 and Selenium. If any of these are lacking, then your in-calf rate may suffer. Don’t leave it too late; get you pre-mating TE testing booked ASAP to ensure a good mating. Late winter and spring are the seasons when Copper and Selenium levels are lowest in the pasture, but arguably most critical to your herd.
As well as getting Copper, Cobalt and Selenium sorted, you should ensure adequate Iodine and Zinc levels. Talk to your Vet to verify your herd’s TE status and for advice on the best way to get the minerals into them.
And remember your replacement animals. Copper is not only required for reproduction but also growth. Your heifers will be doing both, and so it’s critical to get good levels into them to ensure well grown heifers join the herd next year. Long acting boluses are often the best way to prevent Copper deficiency in heifers. There are also effective multi-mineral boluses that provide sustained TE release, such as the ‘All-trace bolus’, that will get the job done.
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