Bloat can occur after as little as 15 minutes to 1 hour after they are turned out to a bloat- producing pasture. This may result in a false sense of security as cattle will seldom bloat while these alternative forages remain in the stand. It is discouraging to discover that a newly purchased lot of alfalfa hay causes bloat, especially if it is the only forage available. Preventing bloat is desirable not only to reduce deaths but also to reduce the negative effect of bloat on cattle per-formance. Can too much alfalfa cause bloat? As with production of cattle in a feedlot, producers will only be comfortable with grazing alfalfa if they are prepared to adopt the concept of an acceptable level of death loss. I've never heard of acidosis from alfalfa hay, but it can cause bloat, which can also kill deer. Although many of these technologies can reduce the risk of bloat, none of them can guarantee bloat safe grazing of alfalfa under the management conditions. Soluble protein levels may also be higher in the plant early in the day and this may be why many experienced producers recommend that cattle be turned into alfalfa pastures after the morning dew is off the alfalfa. I've never heard of acidosis from alfalfa hay, but it can cause bloat, which can also kill deer. The best way to avoid bloat is to reduce the factors that can cause it. Pasture bloat is usually associated with cattle grazing white (ladino) clover or alfalfa, although other plants such as small grains and ryegrass also can cause bloat. It often occurs secondary to … However, I know of two extreme cases of grain bloat where cattle in Saskatchewan were fed high-grain diets in self-feeders and a few bloated animals died. Only graze when fields are dry and firm. This will reduce the bloat problem in all animals that will eat. Additionally, if your cow eats lawn trimmings, this can result in gas bloat because the shortcut fibers become packed inside the rumen and do not process properly. Contributing causes of bloat include, an inherited tendency for bloat, certain proteins in forage, the ... only a few of the cattle in the lot. However, as many a dairy farmer can attest to, cattle can still bloat on alfalfa hay, and long term frozen alfalfa should be considered bloat reduced, not bloat safe. Animals will often experience mild bloat when they are first introduced to alfalfa, but this condition can often be treated by simply keeping the animal walking until the gas dissipates. Monitor grazing of the cattle. This publication provides information on the causes, control, and treatment of bloat in cattle and is intended for livestock producers, veterinarians, and agrologists. But they don’t need straight alfalfa because they don’t need that much protein, and rich alfalfa with no grass or other forage to dilute it can cause digestive problems, diarrhea and bloat. It usually occurs when cattle or sheep are first turned onto legume pastures. Once introduced, every effort should be made to maintain the herd on alfalfa pasture. It is likely that the risk of bloat in frozen alfalfa decreases with time as proteins complex with carbohydrate in a manner similar to that achieved with wilting or drying. Changing from grass hay to alfalfa all at once can change the environment in the rumen of cattle, sheep and goats and in the cecum of a horse (because of the shift in pH—the acid/base balance). Under these conditions, ... information regarding feedlot bloat has included finely ground milo and loose alfalfa hay fed in separate bunks, or finely chopped alfalfa hay … Some parts of this site work best with JavaScript enabled. Also, maintain access to dry hay or corn stalks while grazing alfalfa to help reduce bloat. Keep dry hay out where cattle pass by it daily. Bloat can occur on any lush forage that is low in fiber and highly digestible, but is most common on immature legume (clover and alfalfa) pastures. Note that as alfalfa hay matures, protein levels tend to decline while its fibre content increases making it less palatable to cattle. This will create bigger swings in nutrition and a greater risk for cattle to bloat. Alfalfa varieties that have a slower digestion rate are being developed to lower the bloating risk in cattle, however early research into these varieties has shown mixed results in their ability to reduce rates of bloating iii. Corn stalks while grazing alfalfa to help reduce bloat to 90 days some... May or may not contain legume forage your paddocks ahead if need be, case... To frothy bloat, the producer backgrounded a couple of hundred five-cwt steers to 900 lbs that traps and! 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