Agriculture Victoria - Sam Ellis, Kerang

Type: Webpage
Knowledge level: Introductory

Farm Table says:

Helpful article on sorghum and how it can be effectively used in your livestock enterprise. I was surprised to learn that livestock that eat a lethal dose of sorghum can die of poisoning withing minutes, its really important to understand cyanide and nitrate toxicity and how to avoid it.

This article covers sorghum and how it can be effectively used as a feed source either as hay, silage or for grazing.

The items covered in this article are:

  • Sorghum
  • Cyanide poisoning
  • Nitrate poisoning
  • Lick blocks

Key points were as follows:

  • Livestock enterprises commonly use sorghum as a forage crop for livestock.
  • Cyanide and nitrate poisoning can occur in livestock grazing sorghum. It is vital that livestock are monitored closely during the first 48 hours of grazing sorghum.
  • Do your research when selecting the variety of seed to use for your sorghum crop to ensure it is one of the safer varieties for grazing.
  • Give cattle access to sorghum crops for grazing when they have a full stomach of roughage as it can reduce the likelihood of poisoning.
  • Purchased sorghum silage should be feed tested before giving to livestock to check for cyanide and nitrate levels.
  • Lick blocks are a good idea to give livestock when grazing sorghum, salt block with 10% sulphur is recommended.
  • Should you suspect any poisoning, contact your local vet immediately for advice.
2007 - Australia - Agriculture Victoria - Sam Ellis, Kerang
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