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Ideas On Coping With Heat Stress
by Susan Allen, click here for bio
Program: Open Range
Date: June 01, 12
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While most of us that spend our summers on the back of a horse are smart about wearing hats and using sun screen it’s easy to overlook the effect of heat on livestock. I’m Susan Allen this is the Open Range report stay tuned for the story. Prudent ranchers plan ahead for a summer heat wave knowing that heat stress can be dangerous even deadly for cattle. Some simple preventive measures are to make sure cattle have enough access to water. “According to a report from South Dakota State University when temperatures reach 90 degrees water consumption can be twice as high then on a 70 degree day and 50 % greater than when it is 80 degrees out meaning ranchers should have enough reserve capacity to provide half of the animals daily needs in one hour, or to have 3 linear inchers of trough access per head, meaning extra tanks might be required. Cattle will suffer worse from the effects of heat when they are confined in a feed lot or at a roping, while some people install misters again according to the extension experts the mist can actually increase humidity and add to heat tress. A better solution is to make sure the water drop is larger from sprinklers and to keep the ground cooled as well. Providing shade is important especially with black angus and dark cattle. Avoid working cattle ,if they must be moved do it in the early morning. Feed most of the daily ration in the late afternoon or evening to insure peak rumen heat production will occur in the cooler part of the day and remember that both high air temperature and humidity especially when it doesn’t cool down at night is the most dangerous scenario .
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