Feeding Program for the University of Manitoba Glenlea Dairy Herd

Last month we discussed general management practices at the University of Manitoba dairy herd, where current production is 22,000 lbs with 3.1-3.2% fat. The following are details on the feeding for lactating cows.

A TMR (total mixed ration) system is used, with mixes being formulated for 30 Kg and 40 Kg production. The 3 Kg/day of hay is fed separately. Bunks are cleaned out daily and leftovers fed to dry cows. Makeup of the diets is as follows:

Ingredient Daily Milk Production Level
40 kg 30 kg
kg As-Fed kg Dry Matter kg As-Fed kg Dry Matter
Corn Silage 10.3 3.3 15.2 4.9
Alfalfa Silage 6.1 3.0 7.1 3.5
Alfalfa/Grass Hay 3.0 2.6 3.0 2.6
16% Commercial Dairy Mix 10.9 9.6 9.6 8.6
Protein Supplement 2.4 2.1 1.3 1.2
Sunflower Seeds 1.1 1.0 --- ---
% TDN   75.0   72.0
NE lact (Mcal/kg)   1.73   1.64
% Crude Protein   17.9   16.8
% Undegradable Protein   37   36
% Acid Detergent Fibre   18.5   21.2
% Neutral Detergent Fibre   28   36
  1. Dry matter intakes are approximately 48 lbs and 46 lbs for the high and low energy rations. On a day matter basis, concentrates make up 59% and 42% of the mixes respectively.
  2. The protein supplement provide 1 Kg distillers grain, 0.6 Kg canola meal, 0.5 Kg soybean meal, 168 grams fish meal, 120 grams bicarbonate and 6 grams niacin/day to the top cows. Niacin is fed for milk protein and to help prevent ketosis, not specifically to increase production. It's value is for early lactation. Economic benefit may be lost if fed throughout lactation. Fish Meal is fed to increase the level of undegradable protein for high producers. Bicarbonate is fed to decrease stress during early lactation when concentrate levels are being increased. It is not fed to increase milk fat. Both SBM and Canola Meal are used for the possible complementary effects the two may have.
  3. Tallow in the 16% dairy ration provides 200 grams fat. Sunflower seed fed to cows over 40 Kg production adds 400 grams (approximately l lb) fat. Both are a source of concentrated energy.
  4. Mineral levels are moderate: calcium 0.7%, phosphorus 0.55%, copper 24 ppm, zinc 69 ppm, manganese 56 ppm.
  5. Vitamin levels are: Vit A 70,000 - 100,000 IU, Vit E 500 IU/day.

For further information contact:

Karen Dupchak
Farm Production Extension, Animal Nutritionist
Manitoba Agriculture Food, and Rural Initiatives
204-545 University Crescent
Winnipeg, MB R3T 5S6
Phone: 204-945-7668
Fax: 204-945-4327