Free-Choice Mineral Guidelines

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  BC-3001 – Revised: June, 2006
Dr. Larry W. Olson - Extension Animal Scientist

Free-Choice Mineral Guidelines

Nutrient Sources Restriction Summer Winter
Calcium (Ca) Calcium Carbonate, Monocalcium Phosphate, Dicalcium Phosphate Minimum 13.00% 13.00%
Maximum 15.60% 15.60%
Phosphorous (P) Monocalcium Phosphate, Dicalcium Phosphate Minimum 8.00% 8.00%
Salt (NaCL) Sodium Chloride Minimum 18.00% 21.00%
Maximum 21.60% 21.60%
Magnesium (Mg) Magnesium Oxide, Magnesium Sulfate Minimum 3.50% 8.00%
Potassium (K) Potassium Sulfate Minimum Minimum 0.40% 0.40%
Sulfur (S) Potassium Sulfate, Magnesium Sulfate Minimum Minimum 1.20% 1.20%
Iron (Fe) Ferrous Sulfate Minimum Minimum 0.01% 0.01%
Manganese (Mn) Manganese Oxide Minimum 0.30% 0.30%
Iodine (I) EDDI (Ethylenediamine dihydriodide) Minimum 0.01% 0.01%
Cobalt (Co) Cobalt Carbonate Minimum Minimum 0.0012% 0.0012%
Copper (Cu) Copper (Cupric) Sulfate Minimum 0.15% 0.15%
Zinc (Zn) Zinc Oxide Minimum 0.40% 0.40%
Selenium (Se) Selenium Selenite Minimum 0.00264% 0.00264%
Fluorine (F) ---- Minimum 0.08% 0.08%
Vitamin A Vitamin A Supplement Minimum 300,000 IU/lb 300,000 IU/lb
Vitamin D Vitamin D-3 Supplement Minimum 30,000 IU/lb 30,000 IU/lb
Vitamin E Vitamin E Supplement Minimum 100 IU/lb 100 IU/lb

These are guidelines for selecting a good quality, cost effective complete mineral for cow-calf and stocker operations. They are based on meeting 50% of an animal’s daily requirements with an average intake of 3-4 ounces/head/day. Use to compare mineral bags or tags. Consumption of high Mg minerals decreases significantly, if the magnesium level exceeds 8-9%. A trace mineralized salt block is not a complete mineral. No additional salt is needed. Check bag or tag for Copper Oxide and Iron Oxide, which have 0% availability – avoid such minerals.

For Additional Information Contact:

Dr. Larry W. Olson
Extension Animal Scientist
Edisto Research & Education Center
64 Research Rd.
Blackville, SC 29817
Phone: 803-284-3343 ext 231
Fax: 803-284-3684