Cotton Feed For Cattle

cotton feed for cattle

During calving season, many cows will be offered cotton feed for cattle. The best feed for these cattle will contain Gossypol, Crude protein, Free fatty acids, and Foreign matter. However, many farmers are confused about the differences between these four ingredients. Before you buy a bag of cotton feed for cattle, you should understand what each of them means. The following are some tips for selecting the best feed for your cattle.

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In a study conducted by Calhoun et al., gossypol levels in the plasma of cattle were not exceeded at 5 mg/ml, a safe level for dairy cows. This suggests that cattle fed cottonseed may increase plasma gossypol levels. However, this is not a good practice, as it could cause short-term, temporary fertility decline. Therefore, gossypol is best avoided when feeding cottonseed to cattle.

The study will analyze the composition of extruded cottonseed, including the level of gossypol. It will also examine the effect of different processing conditions on the amount of gossypol present in the product. It will collect product from five mills to determine the concentration and variability of gossypol. The samples will also be subjected to nutrient analysis by commercial laboratories. The plasma concentration of gossypol will be determined and this will help determine if processing is a factor in determining gossypol availability.

Crude protein

The use of gossypol in cattle feed can improve milk production, but how much is enough? Researchers have studied the nutrient value of gossypol in cottonseed and analyzed its availability in cattle feed. The results of this study are reported in the Florida 2001 Beef Cattle Report. Further studies need to be conducted to determine the exact amount of gossypol in cattle feed.

Whole cottonseed is a valuable co-product of the cotton ginning process. The high crude protein content makes it an excellent cattle feed. The same amount of cottonseed has about the same energy content as two pounds of corn or cottonseed meal. In addition, whole cottonseed is abundantly available in the cotton-producing regions. The use of gossypol limits the amount of cottonseed consumption to 25 percent or less of the total dry matter intake.

Free fatty acids

There are many health benefits of using whole cottonseed as a feed for cattle. It is a good source of bypass protein, and dairy cows benefit from it because it increases the amount of butterfat in milk. The good news is that you don’t have to worry about converting this seed into feed yourself. Instead, you can request your feed dealer to include it in your pre-mix. Then, all you have to do is add water and other components of your dairy cows’ diet.

The linoleic acid, found in cottonseed oil is a significant contributor to the overall health of livestock. Its high nutrient density means that it can keep rolling herd averages higher than the national average. Also, it is an excellent source of sterols, a type of fatty acid. Regardless of the oil content, there are a few important considerations you should keep in mind when choosing a cottonseed feed for your livestock.

Foreign matter

When buying cottonseed, be sure to choose the type with the lowest level of foreign matter. Some of the most common foreign bodies include soil, pieces of glass and polythene, nails and metals, wood particles, and rodent feces. Visual inspection is crucial and should never be overlooked because it can have dangerous effects on animals. Some sources of foreign matter include pesticides, fungi, and poisonous plants.

Unlike many other feeds, whole cottonseed contains high levels of protein, crude fiber, and energy. This makes it a particularly attractive protein supplement for high-producing, early lactation dairy cows. It also contains significant amounts of energy, which is essential for the health of these animals. Whole cottonseed is also inexpensive and nutritionally effective for cows with high production rates. However, it is difficult to compete with other feedstuffs, particularly those grown on farms.


The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently released its October cotton outlook report. The report said that production would fall 14% and that whole cottonseed supply would be 600,000 tons less than last season. Because cottonseed is less dense than corn and soybeans, truckloads of it will contain fewer pounds. Therefore, producers should plan carefully and keep an eye on market conditions, according to ag commodity market analysts at Informa Economics, based in Memphis, Tennessee. According to their forecasts, the price of cottonseed will decline a normal old crop decline this year, which is expected to be around $20 per ton between June and September.

Because of the high fat content of cottonseed, cows should not consume large amounts of it. Cattle may experience loose stools, which can affect reproductive performance. Besides that, producers should consider their options carefully to decide if cottonseed is right for their operations. Generally, the price of whole cottonseed is competitive with other feeds on the market. But it is important to note that it is not a substitute for on-farm feeds.


Cattle can be fed whole cottonseed as a roughage source, but the seeds’ low CP and nutritive value make them an undesirable choice. They can be added to a complete ration at a feed dealer, but storage of cottonseed is a key concern. Cottonseed can be prone to mold and spoilage if stored improperly. The ideal moisture level for cottonseed is 10% or less.

Ideally, whole cottonseed is stored in a well-drained location away from moisture and mold. The dump should have a reasonable peak, smooth sides, and should be fenced. The moisture content and air temperature are critical factors in maintaining optimal storage conditions. Stored cottonseed that is wet, stacked high, or in unsanitary conditions can combust or develop mould. Feeding cattle with mouldy whole cottonseed can result in poor performance and even death.