Calling the local vet for an emergency visit is every producer’s worst nightmare. At that point, not only is the animal’s health at risk, but so is the entire herd if disease spreads. With 43 to 100 heads in the average cattle herd, a reactionary approach to antibiotics or health treatments is a risky gamble that can cost a fortune.
Developing a herd health management program with regular inspections and treatments is the go-to measure for preventing this expensive disaster. Yet what often goes overlooked is the importance of the GI tract to a healthy immune system. Supplied with the right nutrients and poly-saccharides, cattle are more equipped to fend off disease, handle stress and make the most of their food. That said, here’s why Ascophyllum nodosum seaweed feed additives are the most effective way to manage the overall health of your beef cattle herd.
Are producers fulfilling their herd’s energy needs? If the majority of their sustenance comes from low quality hay or standing forage, their energy requirements will go unmet. Yet with a small amount of Ascophyllum nodosum mixed into their feed supplements, cattle can digest more of the organic matter in dormant forages.
Studies run by the North Dakota State University using a feed additive made from Tasco® seaweed and protein demonstrated increased organic matter digestibility in cattle’s GI systems. In fact, cattle fed with the Tasco® mixture improved their energy usage by 10%, making the most of the calories and nutrients in every meal.
Antibiotics only do so much to prevent illness among herds. Viruses are immune to antibiotic treatments, and some super bugs are now drug-resistant. And with more consumers crying out for antibiotic free meat, producers need alternative measures to heighten the immunity of their animals.
The complex, sulfated-poly-saccharides found in marine plants like Ascophyllum nodosum seaweed are excellent all-natural way to fight disease. A small amount of seaweed multiplies healthy cells, activates immune cells when needed and encourages cell-to-cell communication. In trials conducted with Tasco® products on E.coli 0157:H7 strains in ruminal fluid, incubation plummeted compared to the cultures in the control group as cells fought the infection.
Recent studies have shown that the health of an animal’s gut micro flora is a primary indicator of its overall health and resilience. For these beneficial micro-organisms to function at peak performance, they need a steady supply of prebiotics for essential vitamins and nutrients. In fact, trials with brown seaweed like Ascophyllum nodosum have proven to maintain the immune system of beef steers for longer periods, helping them surmount stress and disease with small seaweed doses.
Ready to improve your herd health management for less? Reach out to Tasco® for trial information in your region.