Last updated on March 17th, 2022 at 09:47 am
Lazy B Ranch
Riomax® Customer Since 2020
- Breed: 100% Black Angus
- Calving Date: March
- Weaning Date: End of September
- Weaning Weight: 550
- Herd Size: Approx. 400
- Reduced amount of sickness and death loss
- Went from feeding 3 bales a day down to 2 bales a day
- 50 lb increase in weaning weight
- TMR ration went from 45-50#/head/day to 25#/head/every other day
Back in January 2020 we reached out to our local feed guy, Glen Killion. We were needing another set of eyes; the cattle just weren’t keeping condition and we wanted them in better shape going into calving which starts in March. Glen came out here and confirmed they were fairly thin for pre-calving. We thought they needed more protein, but Glen talked more about overall herd health on a deeper level. He mentioned we needed to look at mineral that was more fortified and showed us Riomax®. He explained how the digestion side of it works and how we could get more protein and energy a different way than we’ve done it before.
We started Riomax® two weeks prior to calving, about mid-February. Cows were all on corn stalks. Our dad, Bill, committed to put half the herd on Riomax® but the other half would stay with the normal program we’ve always used. I (Josh) had Riomax® on 124 head and my brother James had Riomax® on another 94 head. Dad kept the remaining group on the other program.
Glen met with my brother James after a couple weeks to check on things. While Glen and James were checking on the cattle, James made the comment, “I can’t believe how good these cows look already!” All the while Glen was thinking, they still have a bit to go yet.
By April 1st, about half way through calving, I realized we hadn’t treated anything for coccidiosis or enterotoxaemia nor did James. Typically, we’ve had a terrible outbreak by now. Dad’s group, without Riomax®, had several calves treated… a few even died. I’ll add though, Dad was still hesitant of Riomax®.
Calving was nearing the end, and typically I’d feed 3 bales a day to my 124 head and I was getting by with only 2 bales a day. At that time, a bale was worth about $64. We fed for 90 days which equals $5,754 saved on hay! I do feed my cows every other day a TMR ration of silage, hay and a little corn. But the bale cut back was not from over feeding. Typically I would feed 45-50#/head/day of this ration but I was able to keep the cows satisfied with 25#/head/every other day!
By June, we’ve got the cows together on grass. My cows, with Glen’s expertise to help back this up, were in optimum condition going to grass. James’ were in good condition. Dad’s were still a tad light.
We put Riomax® on the worst pastures to put it to the test some more. We weaned at the end of September. The calves that came from the less desirable pastures weaned at the same weights as the good pastures, which normally there’s at least a 50# difference per calf.