Using phosphorus supplementation for improved performance and self herding

Harry and Alys McKeough of Carey Downs Station, in the Upper Gascoyne region of Western Australia, had their suspicions confirmed that their cattle were deficient in phosphorus after receiving the results of fecal and soil analyses.

“The tests showed that our sand plain is very lacking, and our creek systems are not as lacking,” Harry explained. With this information, Harry has been able to adapt his dry lick formulation for when his cattle graze on the sand plain where he adds more phosphorus, continuing “(the cattle) consume more of it as well.”

Visual assessment of the cattle and an absence of bone chewing has led Harry to conclude their supplementation program is working. Harry explained “The bone chewing stopped as soon as we started supplementing with phosphorus. We didn’t find bones in the troughs anymore or see those woody looking lactating cows like we used to.”

To read more of Harry and Alys’ story including formulating your own ration and the positive impacts on their business’ bottom line, click here.