Feed and Forage Imbalance

All kinds and classes of livestock require a proper balance of feed and forage to meet nutritional needs and production goals. 

Livestock require five major classes of nutrients: energy, protein, minerals, vitamins, and water. All five are essential for normal health and production. Next to water, the greatest requirement is for energy, followed by protein, with minerals and vitamins needed in very small amounts. Without adequate energy from feed or forage, utilization of all other nutrients is impaired. 

Inadequate Livestock Shelter

Livestock require adequate shelter from climatic conditions to meet basic needs. Examples include protection from wind or sun, or providing a diverse habitat which limits excessive use or crowding.

Inadequate Livestock Water Quantity, Quality, and Distribution

This resource concern refers to the availability and quality of water needed to meet basic needs for the kind and class of livestock using the particular piece of land. Improper distribution of water sources may lead to a negative impact on other resources.

Providing proper water needs is important to the production value of livestock, and the placement of watering systems have an impact of how livestock travel and use the landscape. Proper structure of these systems is also important to the plant communities that exist on the landscape.

South Dakota Department of Agriculture
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Natural Resources Conservation Service