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Livestock Nutrition

The type of nutrition your livestock needs depends on the species. Some animals eat largely what they graze or forage for from the ground. Others rely much more heavily on commercially-produced foods. For many species, livestock nutrition also includes supplementing the animals’ diets with vitamins and minerals for enhanced health.

For animals that eat grasses and hay, grazing year-round may not be an option. If your livestock diet includes using baled hay at least part of the year, be sure it is green and fresh. The outside of the bales may be bleached by the sun to a light gold color, but the inside of the bale should be fresh-smelling and clean. If the entire bale is yellow and coarse, the hay was probably left too long in the field before being cut. While it is still safe to feed to your livestock, it is not as good a choice nutritionally as fresher hay would be. Hay that is brown, black, or musty smelling is not only poor livestock nutrition, but could actually be harmful to your animals.