Module 2 – The Nutritional Link to Animal Health and Fertility in Ruminants
To recognise the importance of nutrition with respect to animal health and fertility and, their collective role in improving production efficiency and minimising impact on the environment. The key environmental benefit is less replacement animals to maintain flock/herd size and production and less maintenance nutrient units for the same or greater production – ‘more with less’.
Candidates must be cognisant of the key links between nutrition, health and fertility and comprehend relevant aspects of animal health and fertility records, and where feeds and feeding management can have a positive effect.
2.3 Essential knowledge and skills
Candidates must be able to:
Demonstrate practical awareness of the links between nutrition and fertility, general good health and welfare – and an ability to take a holistic approach to production and illustrate the impact on reducing emissions per unit of product.
Be able to inform and explain to producers on welfare issues that impact on production, e.g. comfort, feed and water access, lameness and rumination efficiencies and how to access current status and how these can be improved.
Recognise common on farm opportunities to improve fertility, health and welfare and recommend further input as appropriate e.g. vet, industry guidance on best practice e.g. DairyCo.
Minimise the risk of health issues associated with feeding by providing appropriate feeding strategies that lead to reduced emissions per unit of production e.g. rumen and liver function.
Be cognisant of key diseases that affect production performance e.g. fluke, worms, BVD, IBR, leptospirosis, pneumonia.