Colostrum: Feeding Strategies
This is the title of a new Calf Facts resource sheet just added to the Calf Facts section of the www.atticacows.com web site. Click HERE to go to the resource sheet.
A summary of the content is:
- When testing colostrum quality it is recommended to take a sample from the milker bucket to use with a Colostrometer or Brix refractometer.
- However, if hand-milked colostrum (first three or four quarts) must be used, for practical purposes it will have an antibody concentration relatively close to colostrum coming from a cow that is milked out entirely.
- Fully forty to fifty percent of calves will voluntarily consume three or more quarts in the first feeding.
- Always have a person available who is trained to use an esophageal tube feeder. It is common to have as many as three out of ten calves that will not voluntarily drink even two quarts of colostrum.
- Follow best management practices when using an esophageal tube feeder for colostrum feeding. For a review of these practices go to http://www.atticacows.com/documentView.asp?docID=6030.