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Selenium Salt Block ok for Mini Cattle???

Discussion in 'Feeding Time - Cattle (Feed & Forages)' started by omg_sob, Aug 5, 2016.

  1. Aug 5, 2016
    omg_sob

    omg_sob Ridin' The Range

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    I just got 3 Mini Western Heritage Heifers who are between a yr and a yr and a half. I guess they range in size from 85lbs to 150. I just put a Selenium Salt/Mineral Block in their paddock. I usually use the red mineral blocks with our big cattle, but the farmer at the feed place said that since our soil is Selenium difficient he recommends this block.

    Is it ok for Mini's?????

    Thanks for any replies.

    omg_sob
     
  2. Aug 5, 2016
    frustratedearthmother

    frustratedearthmother Herd Master

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    I wish I had an answer for you, but I have no idea. But I 'googled' them and they are so cool! I didn't know this breed existed. Would love to see pics if you get a chance!
     
  3. Aug 5, 2016
    Latestarter

    Latestarter Novice; "Practicing" Animal Husbandry Golden Herd Member

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    Welcome @omg_sob ! Glad you joined us. Can't help you on the cattle question, but maybe some others here can. I don't know if anyone here owns the minis though... Pictures would be pretty cool if you'd share some.
     
  4. Aug 5, 2016
    omg_sob

    omg_sob Ridin' The Range

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    Hi guys....here are a few pix of the girls. VZM.IMG_20160729_181153.jpg VZM.IMG_20160724_185703.jpg
     
    WildRoseBeef and Latestarter like this.
  5. Aug 5, 2016
    NH homesteader

    NH homesteader Herd Master

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    I don't own or know anything much about cows but wow! They are gorgeous!

    And welcome!
     
  6. Aug 5, 2016
    frustratedearthmother

    frustratedearthmother Herd Master

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    Oh wow - they are so cute! Thanks!
     
  7. Aug 5, 2016
    JenniferDuBay

    JenniferDuBay Overrun with beasties

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    OMG THATS A TINY TINY COW!!one!!1! I HAD NO IDEA THERE WERE TINY COWS WOW (color me impressed.)
     
  8. Aug 6, 2016
    Latestarter

    Latestarter Novice; "Practicing" Animal Husbandry Golden Herd Member

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    Those are AWE-some! Thanks for sharing the pics!
     
  9. Aug 6, 2016
    greybeard

    greybeard Herd Master

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    Selenium is one of those trace elements that has a very narrow path to follow--that is, it's a pretty short jump from being deficient to having so much you risk selenium toxicity.
    Never start a mineral supplement regimen without first having a soil test done on your pastures.
    Minerals in soils vary across a state, across a county and across a pasture-highs in one part of the pasture, low in another. Another way is to have a blood sample from a random group of your herd drawn by a vet and have it tested.
    The guy at the feed store doesn't know, we don't know and you won't know without some testing. Parts of my property are low in Se, parts are adequate, and one part is considered borderline too high to graze.All within 124 acres.

    Additionally, the feed you buy is made from plants that were, in all likelihood, grown somewhere else. So is the hay unless you cut and bale your own. Selenium comes to the cattle from the soil thru plants and because of this, every bit of what a cow eats has to be considered when deciding whether a custom mineral supplement is need or even safe.

    Generally speaking, a mineral program that is safe and adequate for full size cattle is also ok for the mini breeds.

    (blocks btw, are the least efficient way for cattle to get mineral supplements. Liquid and loose mineral supplements are a much better way to go, same goes for salt--loose salt is a better method)
     
    omg_sob and WildRoseBeef like this.
  10. Aug 6, 2016
    WildRoseBeef

    WildRoseBeef Range nerd & bovine enthusiast

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    Where are you located @omg_sob ? That will have a big influence on whether your cattle need Se or not. Up here in Alberta most all soils are deficient in Se, but further south, especially south of the most northerly states, Se deficiency is less of a worry than Se toxicity. So x2 on what greybeard said: get a soil test done and/or a feed test--the latter especially if you're not making your own feed--to see what trace minerals are needed and which are not.