Phosphate for the green season
Animals need phosphate throughout the year but during the rainy season their requirements are higher.
13 January 2021 | Agriculture
During the rainy season, all animals are in a fast-growing phase which leads to increased energy metabolism.
According to Feedmaster Namibia, the higher energy metabolism also leads to higher phosphate requirements than during the dry season.
“Animals need phosphate throughout the year, because it is a very important mineral for optimal animal production,” the leading animal feed manufacturer in Namibia says.
There are different kinds of phosphorus raw materials varying from P18 and P21 to P23. These sources do not only differ in their phosphate concentration, but also the availability of the phosphate to the animal (bio-availability).
Therefore, Feedmaster says it is important to know which is used in the final product formulation.
“The availability of the phosphate in Futterfos (P14) is the best due to the better sources of phosphate included in the product, as well as less calcium than in most other phosphates, which can limit phosphorus intake.”
According to Feedmaster, Futterfos is enriched with high amounts of essential micro-minerals, which also contribute to better animal production and reproduction.
Animals need small amounts of phosphate every day to maintain production, it stresses.
“The only supplement to consider in summer (rainy season, green pastures) is a phosphate lick. Phosphate (P) is an important mineral for good fertility, development of the bone structure, energy metabolism and milk production.”
Feedmaster says that a balanced phosphate lick known as P6 is suitable for sheep, goats, cattle, horses and donkeys.
“P6 does not contain any urea and is therefore not poisonous when getting wet from the rain. When giving P6 to animals we recommend removing rock salt to ensure that animals eat the right amount of phosphate and other minerals.”
Differences between licks, feeds and concentrates
According to Feedmaster licks are ready-mixed, while concentrates still need to be mixed.
“Licks are a balanced supplement that is given daily in small amounts to animals grazing on the veld. Licks can be a balanced mixture of protein, energy, minerals, phosphates and salt. “It can be divided into the green season and dry season period. The feed is either a complete (containing roughage) or a semi-complete (without roughage) feed.”