BLUESTONE RANCH MINERAL PROGRAM
We provide organic and non-GMO minerals for our cattle from Advanced Biological Concepts. They are offered 12 components free-choice. They consume what they need, which we believe is advantageous over a tub or lick of a general mixture of minerals. I will list below what is in their “mineral buffet” and my attempt at a brief explanation (though it is really just an overview; minerals are complex and do so much more than just “one thing”). Bill Johnson states that “the instincts of animals are superior to the research of man.”
Iodine: metabolism regulation
Vitamin A: healthy tissue growth
Buffer Plus: counteracts low rumen pH and increases victimization of protein; enzyme added to facilitate bacterial growth in rumen.
BVC mix: B vitamin blended with bacteria, kelp, trace minerals, buffers and herbs. Assists with nerves/stress
Calcium: bone growth vigor
CU mix: iron and copper work together to form hemoglobin in blood
Magnesium: bone and blood development
Potassium: proper growth and nerve response factors affecting vitamin A consumption
Phosphorus: growth and reproduction
Sulfur: protein formation; hair, hoof, horn development
Ts-k: trace minerals plus selenium = immune system health
Zinc: increase gains through good feed efficiency
From Bill Johnson:
“Animal nutritional instincts are aided by taste bud systems more complex and more finely turned than man’s.
In their natural state, wild animals instinctively seek the food nutrients they need from a wide variety of natural sources. The American bison, for instance, roamed the vast prairies of middle America eating a great variety of grasses plus mineral rich earth.
Domesticated animals today are restricted to ranches, pastures, feed lots and confinement buildings. The availability of natural sources for minerals and vitamins dwindles in relation to the degree of confinement.
Individual minerals are the best and the most convenient way of providing the essential min- eral elements for livestock. Individual minerals are fed in a mineral feeder with individual com- partments providing the animal with free choice access to individual nutrients.
Concentrated natural minerals are provided in separate compartments. They are natural in composition and in taste, with no additives. Livestock can choose their minerals and vitamins by instinct and taste alone, as they always have.
The nutrient content of silage, haylage, hay or grass can vary dramatically depending on things like:
1. Stage of forage at harvest
2. Weather conditions
3. Fertilization programs
4. First, second or third cutting of alfalfa 5. Area of the farm crop comes from
Individual minerals fed free choice allows the animal to balance his/her mineral requirements based on the changing mineral content of the ration.
Raw ingredient selection is very important. The mineral element must be both tasteable and available to the animal. Substitution of cheaper, less available mineral elements can be very detri- mental to the program. No artificial flavors can be added to individual minerals.
This concept is as old as animal history, but as new as modern feeding conditions.