Fact Sheet Written by:
Donald R. Gill, Extension Livestock Nutrition Specialist
Keith S. Lusby, Extension Beef Cattle Specialist
And Provided by
Oklahoma State University
High protein range cubes (38-41% natural protein) are designed to be fed to beef cattle on dry winter forages. To get the most out of your feed program it is important to understand the interaction between dry roughage and high protein concentrates. Most standing dry grasses in the winter are low in protein, but more importantly they are quite hard for the animal to digest. For wintering cows and for dry wintering other stock where the objective of feeding is to obtain most of the needed energy from these dry forages the primary principle of supplementation is to improve the intake and digestibility of the forage. The only supplemental feeds which will consistently meet the objectives of improving both intake of the forage and its digestibility are high protein concentrates. For example the feeding of an adequate amount of high protein concentrate to cows on dry native range in the winter will likely cause a large increase in forage intake (2-10 lbs. per day) and give an improvement in dry matter digestibility of the forage of up to 15%. Thus, the feeding of a small amount of high protein concentrate to cattle offered adequate quantities of dry forage is usually the least expensive method of wintering cattle in Oklahoma.
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