Molasses

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by Daniel Babcock, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. Daniel Babcock

    Daniel Babcock Member

    509
    0
    16
    I am currently feeding my doeling mini-manchas (approx 4 months old) two types of Goat pellets. The first is manufactured by IFA, a local feed company. The second by Nutrena. Both manufactures suggest their feeds can be fed with roughage or fed as a sole ration. We feed morning and evening in the barn and allow the goats to browse all day (we have a 3 acre lot fully fenced w/ 6 foot chainlink and lots of scruboak, chokecherry ash elm etc.)

    I also picked up some C.O. B.

    So here is my question. The pellets and COB from the local feed store have Molasses. In the pellets, Molasses is the fourth ingredient. And the COB is covered in it. Should I avoid the Molasses?

    I have read many posts suggesting creating your own mixes. Corn oats barley and BOSS seems to be a popular mix. Would it be better for the goats to mix my own grain and avoid molasses?

    I have also read that people use Calf Manna in their grain mix. I priced this and was surprised to find it cost $28/ 50 lb. Is there a generic or no name substitute?


    I am trying to learn as much as I can about goat nutrition, and appreciate your help! Please share your opinions and what you feed your goats.
     
  2. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

    16,497
    4
    0
    Nutrena usually has really good products here, it's also where you can get your loose Onyx mineral.

    I choose to mix my own or buy a premix with just (oats, corn...sometimes barley etc.) grains in it because when good clean whole oats (fat oats, race horse oats) fall below the sacked prices I can switch freely between them because it's all the same thing. No I don't use molassas in my products, but you might also not have the problems with copper that I do. I would never feed wet COB. Wet cob has so much powder in it, fines really from uncleaned products that the molassas is used to keep the dust down. I would be the molassas also counts for 25% of the cost per bag, which is outragious. Even if you aren't anti molassas like me :) you don't want anywhere near 25% molassas in the mix, under 10% is better. Don't let the appearance of pellets fool you either, molassas also comes in a dried powdered form that doesn't make it sticky.

    Change slowly, no more than a handful of change a day, so keep your old pellets, then slowly start adding whole oats to their program.

    Yes all mills carry knock offs of calf manna, called supplement pellets. Head Start, Show Bloom, Nutrient Supplement etc...they are a small pink anise smelling soy pellet with usually whey in it (can be stated as animals by products) and has an impressive list of vitamins and minerals. Considering my girls get 1/3 cup on the milkstand morning and night the price tag isn't as horrific as you think. But you may also be able to find roasted soybeans also,,,even soybean meal...of course then you are only raising protien and not adding vitamins and minerals to your milkstand grain.

    With the really excellent alfalfa hay you can get in your area, grain may not even be needed to grow out your kids...I know Tracy who has Alpines in Idaho feeds alfafla hay and alfalfa pellets and no grain to her kids. Our quality of alfalfa is poor down here, especially the keeping quality, so graining kids to freshen them the first year is a must. Now if I was going to freshen at 2, no grain for kids or they would be fat. Vicki
     

  3. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

    9,442
    1
    0
    NOPE I feed no molasses here. alfalfa pellets and grass hay and whole oats
     
  4. Anita Martin

    Anita Martin Senior Member

    2,792
    0
    36
    I was fortunate enough this past winter to be able to have a nice long talk with a Nutrena feeds distributor. I was doing a natural hoof trimming clinic. In my experience, molasses in horse feeds equals a horse that CANNOT sucessfully go barefoot due to the metabolic problems the excess sugars cause, and resulting hoof wall separation, thrush, etc. Anyway, this equine nutritition "expert" knew nothing about molasses causing hoof problems. (Doesn't EVERYONE know that?) I was very interested in talking about the various feeds he was selling, both for horses and other animals, including goats. I told him that I was a little concerned that some feeds listed things like molasses and wheat middlings as the second or third ingredient. This was disturbing to me, especially since some of these feeds were being marketed to sugar-sensitive laminitic and foundered horses. He told me that in animal feeds the order of nutrients meant NOTHING. He showed me a bag of senior feed, which had flax seed listed as the FIRST ingredient. He said "obviously, flax seed would not be the major ingredient in this feed." I told him that it was not at all obvious to me, and that if I did not have him standing there telling me otherwise, I would have assumed that bag of feed contained mostly flax seed....which would not be a good thing at all.
    Sooooo, I learned a lot that day. First of all, that feed tags mean next to nothing, and if you are looking for a quality product, reading the feed tag will not help you choose one. Also, they don't list sources of certain nutrients that may change due to locality, so every bag you get could be far different from the last bag.
    I don't know if it is just the Nutrena company that does business this way, or if this guy just assumed that I knew next to nothing about nutrition, or did not care, so felt he could say just anything, but talking to him just strenghthened my mistrust of feed companies. Perhaps they are not trying to intentionally mislead us, but just assume we really don't care what is in the bag since we are just feeding "animals".
    Mixing our own feed is really the only way to know for sure what is going in your feed bucket. If an ingredient is moldy, it can be easilybe disguised in a pellet or covered with molasses. Many animals will eat ANYTHING if the taste is masked with molasses!
    Hope this helps. We, as consumers, spending millions a year in feed for our animals should DEMAND better quality and disclosures on labels, or make our own.
    anita
     
  5. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

    16,497
    4
    0
    Anita what is a natural hoof trimming clinic...more about hoof health and shoeing or not shoeing I guess in this case....Vicki
     
  6. wheytogosaanens

    wheytogosaanens New Member

    1,289
    1
    0
    We never grain our kids - good second cutting alfalfa is all it takes to get nice big growthy girls that milk like crazy after they kid.

    For our grain, we mix oats and barley and then top dress with BOSS. Every once in a while I think about calf manna, but then think "hmmm, if it ain't broke, don't fix it". (That's how I keep from jumping all over the place when someone else has a neat idea! :) ) If my girls didn't look so good, milk so well, kid so easily (3 sets of triplets from FF this year), then I would be re-examining what we do here.

    Interesting note: Our grain farmer pointed out to me that pelleted feeds are anywhere from 10-20% water to bind the pellets together. So that is expensive water! Grain is just grain. Oats, barley, BOSS. No guessing and no changing.

    Camille
    P.S. We are a bit nutty about our minerals - get the best we can and then add cultured yeast and kelp. Big emphasis on copper and selenium (we are actually negative according to my vet and our mineral nutritionist because there are so many things in our soil to bind with these minerals and interfere with their uptake). We also avoid iron (the molasses bit, because it interferes with the absorption of copper).
     
  7. shawhee

    shawhee Member

    426
    4
    18
    Natural hoof care is about going barefoot, and obtaining more optimum perfomance and health from your horse. Not to steal from Anita, but I am a certified hoof groom mentor. I used to give classes here in N. Texas. All of my herd of horses are barefoot, and we rodeo, rope, trail ride, barrel race etc. I have 10 healthy barefoot horses.

    Hey Vicki - Question about goat hooves if I may? Ok the hoof trimming part I think I have down, but what about the things above? My girls had overgrown hooves that look much better now, but those button (yeah I am a newb! sorry don't know what they are called and have not looked them up yet :)) things can you trim them, how much, do you just use the shears? Two of my giels have very long and yucky looking ones.

    Thanks,
    Shawna

    Soon to be in Pocatello ID I hope!~
     
  8. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

    16,497
    4
    0
    Dew Claws, and yes they should be clipped, and sanded smooth...looking just like mature infant kids ones. I do keep mine clipped short, gone are the days of sanding since nobody is shown in showmanship anymore. vicki
     
  9. Liberty Alpines

    Liberty Alpines New Member

    142
    0
    0
    Camille,

    Just oats, barley and BOSS - sounds good and easy. What is your mixture? Like 1 part to 3 parts, etc. Kristin
     
  10. Daniel Babcock

    Daniel Babcock Member

    509
    0
    16
    Camille-

    We have great alf alfa here in Utah as well, some of the best around. However I have not fed alf alfa hay because of the waste. What do you do to prevent/avoid waste. Whereas I dont grow and cut it myself I pay $5-6 per 60lb bale.