How To Better Manage Turnout For Your Ruminants

How can you better manage the turnout period for your ruminants?

The beginning of a turn-out period is critical in the life of a cow. This is a period of stress, linked to the quick change in diet and environment. Young spring grass is often rich in water, soluble sugars and nitrogen. This promotes the acceleration of transit and diarrhoea. Consequently, the Mg/K rate will decrease which creates a poor absorption of trace elements essential for proper functioning of bodily systems.


Forage quality may vary depending on weather and season. Indeed, the climatic conditions of summer +/- favourable can have an impact on the availability of trace elements and minerals in the pasture. On the other hand, the young spring grass will contain a high level of soluble nitrogen. This high nitrogen input can cause an imbalance of rumen microorganisms (like protozoa) and increase ammonia production quickly. If not managed, this high volume of soluble nitrogen can lead to various health issues as indicated.


First of all, best turnout practices begin with pasture management: when starting, grass height should be greater than 7cm; soil conditions need to be favourable; a minimum of 25 acres per cow; and no grazing on grass that is less than 5cm high. Then comes herd management through a 3-week long feeding transition, the gradual turnout, provision of self-service hay/straw; a balanced nutrient intake; and a product to manage ammonia. 

Self-service TIMAC AGRO technologies can decrease ammonia production in the rumen, prevent the loss of urea, optimise grass protein, along with many other benefits for muscle development, fertility, and immunity.

Contact your local TIMAC AGRO representative to find out how your herd can have a top-notch turnout!