Water: The #1 Forgotten Nutrient

For anyone who has attended our livestock classes, the importance of water is undoubtedly the most stressed point, as it is the most forgotten nutrient in all livestock operations. Good quality water is critical for strong animal health performance, as it aids in nutrient transportation, chemical reactions, temperature regulation, and so much more.

Without a sufficient amount of water, an animal’s body undergoes severe stress resulting in poor performance of internal functions. For this reason, we recommend providing multiple water sources for your livestock and replenishing as needed to maintain quality and availability. Water sources will be depleted much more rapidly in the summer months due to both animal intake as well as evaporation. Winter is also a crucial time, as water freezes and becomes inaccessible. For this reason, we recommend using water heaters, insulated water containers, or simply replenishing water sources frequently during the winter months.

The general rule of thumb is to provide a minimum of 5 to 6 gallons of water per 100 birds and 2 to 3 gallons of water per 100 pounds of bodyweight for other livestock, increasing this amount as needed to meet environmental conditions. The addition of apple cider vinegar to water sources is also beneficial, as ACV stimulates the microflora in the GI tract, which improves feed efficiency and provides an energy boost.

As always, should you have any questions or concerns, feel free to call our Customer Care team at 540-469-0694. We’re always happy to help!

 

Photo credit: http://www.access-irrigation.co.uk/design-services/irrigation-agriculture/livestock-rainwater-harvesting