Feed: Feed Demand

Cows have different feed demands, depending on whether they are lactating cows, dry cows or replacement stock.

Get all those useful numbers regarding the daily and annual feed requirements of dairy cows, including:

 


The feed requirement figures are 'eaten' feed demand plus 6% to allow for feed wastage observed under good feeding conditions of pasture in farmlet trials. Where feed (pasture or supplement) wastage rates are higher than those stated, requirements for feed offered need to be increased.

Dairy cow annual dry matter requirements - milksolids production

Note: The feed requirement figures are 'eaten' feed demand plus 6% to allow for feed wastage observed under good feeding conditions of pasture in farmlet trials. Where feed (pasture or supplement) wastage rates are higher than those stated, requirements for feed offered need to be increased.  The requirements are calculated for pasture at 11.0 MJ ME/kg DM. For different pasture quality make the following adjustments to calculate ME or DM requirements. 
Breed
kg Lwt
(kg MS per cow/year
250
(kg MS per cow/year
300
(kg MS per cow/year
350
(kg MS per cow/year
400
(kg MS per cow/year
450
(kg MS per cow/year
500
(kg MS per cow/year
550
Jersey
350
3.7
4.0 4.4 4.7 5.1 - -
Jersey
400
3.9
4.2 4.6 5.0 5.3 5.7 -
J X F
450

4.2

4.5 4.9
5.3
5.6
6.0
6.4
Friesian
500
4.4
4.8 5.2 5.5 5.9 6.3 6.7
Friesian
550
-
5.0 5.4 5.8 6.1 6.5 6.9
 Note: The annual requirements include walking 4 km/day on the flat for 270 days in milk per cow.
 These requirements are greater than the figures used in DairyBase, as DairyBase calculates feed eaten which does not allow for wasteage.
  • DM requirements with increasing feed quality: subtract 14% per MJ ME above 11.0 MJ ME/kg DM
  • DM requirements with decreasing feed quality: add 14% per MJ ME below 11.0 MJ ME/kg DM

To find out more refer to:

Feed demand

The feed information sheet contains all the feed supply and demand numbers required for daily and annual feed requirements of dairy cattle. Find estimates of feed maintenance, pregnancy, condition score and milk production in both Kg DM & MJ ME.

Feed supply

Use the feed information sheet to find estimates of feed supply regarding feed quality, quantity and costing and Nitrogen fertiliser rates and responses.

 
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