Goats and minerals???

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by liz, Mar 18, 2010.

  1. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    I have a mineral feeder that holds 8# of mineral for my does... I'm filling this thing every 2-3 weeks.... I use the Manna Pro goat mineral for my does and Golden Blend for my boys..the 3 boys go through 5# in the same amount of time...they have a good quality mixed hay with timothy and some alfalfa and they all get a good 18% pre mix goat grain, with 5 adult does age range 2 years to 10 years as well as an 8 month old.... is this "normal"?

    With the pasture mineral I used in previous years I don't recall filling the feeder so often! Is it because they just like this stuff or they really are lacking something besides the copper?
  2. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    Seems like kind of a lot to me too...Do you know the salt content of the minerals you are using? If the salt content is high they have to eat more to get the rest of the minerals they need. Other than that...I can't think of any reason they would use so much.

  3. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    The salt content says the max is 14.40%
  4. bheila

    bheila New Member

    Jan 9, 2009
    Kent, Wa
    I've been considering putting out a salt block just for the reason FRF stated. I'm not really happy with my minerals at the moment anyway. My goats are all deficient in copper. Going to try the Purina loose minerals. Using Sweetlix Meat Maker right now.
  5. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
  6. farmergal

    farmergal New Member

    Jun 19, 2009
    Northern California
    Hm that does sound like a lot. And you're sure there's no way they're wasting it... knocking it out of the feeder, etc.?

    PS -- If you have found a way for them not to waste it I would love to hear it... I go through way too many minerals because they have destroyed every mineral feeder I've put out for them... by jumping up on it, etc... they seem to think minerals = dance floor.
  7. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    I have a PVC pipe feeder made by my hubby. Its a 4inch pvc pipe glued to a pvc "Y" at the bottom and a screw cap at the very bottom to clean it out...this is 3 feet tall and it will hold 15 pounds of minerals. It's attached to the wall with metal plumbing straps so they can't break it down or mess in it.
    This is similar to what I have...works great! Just be sure to anchor it high enough so they can't poop in it, placing a block under it will help shorter goats reach into it too...mine just stand against the wall on their hind legs to reach the minerals.
  8. farmgirl42

    farmgirl42 New Member

    Jan 2, 2010
    Eastern Ohio
    Hi, Liz. I use the MannaPro goat minerals for my standard Oberhaslis. I use put it out "free choice" in a small trough feeder. I only put maybe an inch or two at a time, "stir" it anytime I'm in the barn, and re-fill when it gets close to empty. For 8 standards I am only using about 1 1/2 bags (8# bag) per month. I feed free choice hay and Purina goat chow.

    I've only had my goats for a few months. When I first got them, they went through about 20# of mineral in the first month. I thought, wow! this is going to be expensive!

    But now they go through just a little over a bag per month, so they've really cut back. So, based on my experience only, it would seem like yours are really going through a lot.
  9. Lawanda

    Lawanda New Member

    Jun 11, 2009
    West Virginia
    I wondered about this, and was even talking to Steph about it some...because my goats seem to eat very little of them. Even Jackson who used to eat the minerals every day when he got here, doesn't eat them much at all anymore! We put them out, but they sit there for three days sometimes, so we change them to new. They eat a bit, but not much.

    Maybe there is something lacking in your browse/grass that they need in there? I am very limited in my experience, so idk. I thought there was something maybe wrong with my goats for not eating much of them...
  10. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    I know my goats are copper deficient and the minerals are the only option I will use to try and correct it...I'm hoping that with the weather changing they will be out browsing more and won't be going through as much. Also need to make sure I write down dates when I fill the feeder just to know if they do cut back.
  11. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    That's not alot...so I guess they just really like their minerals...?? I don't know...
  12. WalnutGroveFarm

    WalnutGroveFarm Senior Member

    Sep 27, 2008
    Southern Ohio
    Liz I use to feed the minerals that you are feeding now. But the bag would only last a little over two weeks. They seemed to love it. But I switched to Purnia goat minerals and they dont eat as much of them as they did the manapro. So I dont know either but, I do better with the purina cause it comes in a bigger bag and last longer.
  13. DPW

    DPW New Member

    Mar 13, 2010
    Crow, Oregon.
    Two people who have raised goats for quite some time told me not to offer salt blocks to the goats. Only the loose mineral or mineral block. Their argument was that goats eating the loose mineral for their salt were consuming other needed minerals as well. Where as any goats that preferred the salt only block would not get the other minerals.
    That being said there is one fact for sure I've learned about raising goats. No two people do it exactly the same. I myself have been known to hang a small salt block in the barn occasionally when it seemed the goats were going through a lot of loose mineral.
    Being new here and not knowing if this is old news to everyone, here is one added little tidbit. Don't use the mineral blocks labeled for goats AND sheep. Sheep cannot tolerate the amount of copper goats need so the "dual purpose" blocks are lacking in copper.