Dairy calf iron deficiency group

The group consists of dairy farmers who are currently feeding whole milk to replacement dairy calves, in both organic and non-organic systems. They are interested in investigating the prevalence and importance of iron deficiency in calves fed whole milk and its effect on health and performance. Several farmers are involved, three of which were previously involved in a pilot study on this. Members from OMSCo and the veterinary groups Synergy, Friars Moor, Damory and Endell as well as the animal health company Vibrac are also supporting the group.

The group is keen to trial after a pilot study was conducted on a group of 47 calves and found a 97g growth rate difference between supplemented calves and control calves.

This group is sponsored by BBSRC.

Group Topic

Improving feed efficiency in livestock

Feed is one of the largest variable costs to farmers. An animal’s health, stress, nutrition, weight and growth rate all affect feed efficiency. Finding ways to improve efficiency sustainably is crucial for better returns.

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