No matter the state you live in, agriculture plays a massive part of Australia’s economy and way of life. Whether it’s livestock or crops, farming supports rural and urban communities.
The largest category of farms in the Greater Perth region, as well as Western Australia in general, is beef cattle farming. As of 2018 there were 104 beef cattle farms in Perth, making up around 20% of the regions’ agriculture sector. Livestock grazing is widespread, occurring in most areas of Australia, while cropping and horticulture are generally concentrated in areas relatively close to the coast.
While Perth is blessed with sunny skies 70% of the year, it can experience long, hot and very dry summers. For this reason, Perth livestock farmers have to take extra care in feeding and tending to livestock in times of extreme weather.
This is when many farmers will rely on substitute or supplementary feedings with grain, hay or silage.
About supplementary feeding
In times of drought, animals usually only have access to poor quality dry feed, which they can’t digest and use efficiently. Supplementary feeding aims to make better use of the feed by providing the nutrients that the pasture is deficient in.
There are many things farmers should keep in mind when doing supplementary feeding. One of the most important is efficient and effective feed out methods. If you’re feeding with hay or silage, the best way to do this is with a mechanical bale hay feeder in Perth.
Bale hay feeders provide a safe, fast and efficient feeding method, and most importantly saves you time and money. We’ll talk a little more about bale hay feeders in Perth below.
But first, here’s a few best practices for supplementary feeding:
Identify the most limiting components in available feed. This is usually protein, sulphur and/or metabolisable energy. It’s important to bear in mind that young and lactating animals have a greater need for protein.
Choose supplement feed that contains high levels of the identified components needed.
Select feeding schedules and practices that minimise disruption to the animals’ digestive system.
Start by feeding animals that have the greatest needs, for example pregnant cows with low fat score or weaning calves.
Keep an eye on feed consumption, weights and condition of livestock. That way you can ensure the feeding strategy is working.
Types of supplementary feeding scenarios
Supplementary feeding looks different from farm to farm and year to year. There are many different scenarios to how it works alongside normal livestock feeding. Take a look below:
Supplementation - This is usually where the supplement feed is eaten and pasture intake remains unchanged. This type of scenario is rare.
Substitution - This is where the supplement is eaten and pasture intake is reduced. Substitution can happen when pastures are insufficient or high-energy feed is supplied.
Complementation - This is where supplement is eaten and pasture intake increases. This usually happens when livestock are grazing on crop stubble or dry pastures and the supplement improves their ability to utilise the feed.
What are the best bale hay feeders in Perth?
If you’re feeding supplementary hay or silage, the best option for farmers in Perth is a bale hay feeder. They reduce feed wastage and time spent on manual feed outs, while also ensuring that feed is adequately distributed to cattle.
Here’s the best types of bale hay feeders from Willie's Manufacturing Industries you can find in Perth.
Albybone - Round or square multi-bale feeder, able to carry up to 6 bales. Larger machines can also be built to order.
Pa-Mick - Versatile, multi-bale feeder, able to carry up to 2 round or square bales.
Elite - Robust, round bale feeder, able to carry up to 2 big round bales.
Champion - Robust round bale feeder, able to carry up to 6 big round bales. Smaller machines can be built to order.
There are plenty of great options for reliable and versatile bale hay feeders to find in Perth. If you would like to see where our Perth dealers are located, take a look at our dealers page.
At WMI Feeders, we’re proud to supply high-quality, long-lasting products that can withstand the tough Aussie climate, particularly that found in Western Australia. We pride ourselves on designing and building the highest quality range of bale feeders and feed out carts.
We use the latest, modern technology in the design process for our machines and utilise valuable feedback from farmers and customers for the design and production of new machines. We cater to the needs of various farming operations, so no matter yor set-up or requirements, we have a solution that suits.
If you have any questions about our feeders or would like to enquire about custom orders, get in touch with our friendly team today.