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FEEDING CATTLE.

beasts wishes to feed or to play, while others are inclined to rest; thus they mutually tease and disturb each other; and this inconvenience is materially augmented, if any sort of penning, or confinement, be attempt. ed. Hence it is obvious, that the practice of intermixing various kinds of live stock, is productive of evils, which are, in many instances, greater than those resulting from the waste of food intended to be prevented by this practice. There is, indeed, no doubt but that by hard stocking, the grass will be kept short

, and will consequently be more palatable in general to the animals that eat it, than if it were allowed to grow to a great length; and that even unpleasant patches may thus be consumed; but as animals, which are to be fattened, must not only have sweet food, but also an abundant bite at all times, in order to bring them forward in a kindly manner, it appears scarcely possible to unite both these advantages with an indiscriminate mixture of stock ; it may, therefore, be generally prudent to confine the practice to neat cattle and sheep.

Soiling comes next to be considered. By this is meant, the feeding of animals with new mown grass, or grass not dried in racks or otherwise.

This method of keeping cattle is probably not generally applicable to the present state of agriculture in our country. It may be of use where fencing stuff is dear-where grass is of great value-where cultivation is carried to great perfection—where population treads close upon the heels of production. But even in the populous parts of New England, it is doubtful whether it can be adopted to advantage, except on lands in the vicinity of great cities, or on farms reduced to a state of great improvement and high cultivation, or on very small farms. A large proportion of the lands of New England, and indeed in other parts of our country, are too rough and rocky to admit of any sort of cultivation, yet they answer well for pasture grounds, and to no other purpose can they be appropriated.

Still, it is believed, that, under certain circumstances, soiling may be resorted to with great advantage. Within a few years, an experiment has been made by the Hon. Josiah Quincy, of Massachusetts, of soiling cattle, the result of which was communicated for the Massachusetts Agricultural Journal, and is published in vol. VI. Nos. II. and IV. of that work. According to Mr. Quincy, the advantages of soiling consist in, “1st. the saving of land. 2d. The saving of fencing. 3d. The economising of food. 4th. The better condition and greater comfort of the cattle. 5th. The greater product of milk. 6th. The attainment of manure." For an illustration of these several particulars, we must refer our readers to the above work.

In respect to stall-feeding neat cattle, it may be observed, that good hay is undoubtedly the best for fattening cattle, when judiciously combined with cabbages, carrots, parsnips, turnips, or similar succulent plants, though hay will rarely be found capable of fattening animals, without the aid of other food when finishing off for the market.

In England, great use is made of the cabbage, and which the Editors of the Complete Grazier say, will fatten oxen or bullocks, when combined with good hay, in the short space of five months, besides yielding a larger quantity of manure, than almost any other article used for winter feed.

Parsnips, also, have been employed to considerable extent in England

FEEDING CATTLE.

for fatting oxen, and the benefit thence derived in the estimation of some graziers is nearly equal to that derived from oil-cake; but they are apt to cloy the appetite, and should therefore be given with other food ; or, if alone, they should not be continued for a long time together.

Carrots, also, are an excellent root, not only for fatting cattle, but also for milch cows and even for working horses. The butter made from cows fed on carrots is said to be generally of an excellent quality, and much richer in color. On a good soil, and when well attended, carrots are often very productive.

Turnips, especially when steamed, also supply a nutritive article of winter food"; though from their peculiarly moist nature, they will probably require to be combined with cut hay, to which a little meal may o€ casionally be added. In England, it is well known, turnips are much more abundantly used than in this country. Great numbers of cattle, it is said, are annually fatted for the London market on little other food than turnips.

Much has been written on the Mangle wurzel, or root of scarcity, both in this country and in Europe. Some years since the highest expectations were forined in Britain respecting its usefulness, as an article of fodder. Although highly esteemed in that country, especially for cows, it'is not so much valued, perhaps, as in some parts of the continent, where it is preferred for feeding cattle to every other root. In this country, it is now frequently raised and deserves to be cultivated still more than it is. In the opinion of the editors of the Complete Grazier, it does not fat cattle as fast as the potatoe, and some other roots.

In this country, potatoes are extensively used for the stall feeding of cattle. They are generally given in a raw state, but would doubtless answer a better purpose if steamed. It is sometimes difficult to give cattle a sufficient quantity, in consequence of their causing them to scour. When this happens, meal or other dry food should be administered, and the quantity of potatoes, for the time, diminished. The editor of this work has known an ox of middle age to be fatted surprisingly quick, on hay of good quality and raw potatoes. No other article of food was given, and during the process of fattening not a gallon of water was given to the animal.

Besides the above vegetable productions, others might be mentioned, such as the ruta baga, or Swedish turnip, sugar beet, &c. which are highly valued in many parts of the country. Passing over a more extended notice of these, we proceed to detail a few hints respecting other articles which are or may be likewise employed with advantage. For this purpose linseed oilcake has long been celebrated as eminently use. ful; it is asserted to have a very extraordinary effect on cows, greatly increasing their milk; but it is said that linseed jelly is much superior to the cake, and that when mixed with a due proportion of hay or meal affords an excellent composition for stall feeding and fattening. It is prepared in the following manner: To seven parts of water let one pari, of linseed be put, for forty-eight hours; then boil it slowly for two hours, gently stirring the whole lest it should burn. Afterwards it ought to be cooled in tubs, and mixed with meal, bran, or cut chaff, in the proportion of one bushel of hay to the jelly produced by one quart of linseed, well mashed together. This quantity given daily, with other food, will forward cattle rapidly; but it must be increased when they are intended to be completely fattenéd.

FEEDING CATTLE.

The above jelly is said to be more agreeable to cattle than cake, while it renders them less liable to surfeit in case an extra quantity should be accidentally given, and is less liable to affect the meat with a peculiar taste than either oil or cake, and consequently it merits a trial ; but it will be requisite to change this food about a month before the beast is killed, to prevent, if possible, the flesh from retaining the flavor of the oilcake or jelly.

Cattle fed on sour food, prepared by fermenting rye flour and water into a kind of paste, and then diluted with water, and thickened with hay cut small, are also said to fatten quickly. This practice chiefly prevails in France. Concerning the efficacy of acid food in fattening animals, there is much difference of opinion. It is well known that hogs derive more benefit from sour milk and swill than when those articles are in a fresh state ; and it is highly probable, that sour articles may contribute to promote digestion, and by facilitating the consumption of a large quantity of food in a stated period, consequently expedite the fattening of cattle. Brewer's grains are sometimes used in that state; but distiller's grains differ from them in having a proportion of rye frequently mixed with the malt, which renders them more naturally sour. But such acid messes can only, we conceive, be considered as preparatory to the more forcing and essential articles of dry food; without which, it is scarcely possible that any steer, or bullock can acquire that firmness of muscle and fat which is so deservedly admired, and considered as the criterion of excellence.

The wash, or refuse of malt, remaining after distillation, which was formerly applied exclusively to the feeding of swine, has of late years been applied with success to the stall feeding of cattle. It is conveyed from the distillery in large carts, closely covered, and well jointed, in order to prevent leaking. The liquor is then discharged into vats, or other vessels, and when these are about two-thirds filled, a quantity of sweet hay, previously cut small, is immersed for two or three days, that the wash may imbibe the taste or flavor of the hay before it is used. In this state it is carried to the stalls, and poured into troughs, whence it is generally eagerly eaten by cattle. Sometimes, however, the beasts are at first averse to this mixture; in which case it has been recommended frequently to sprinkle their hay with the wash; thus, having the smell continually before them, and seeing other animals eating the same composition with avidity, they gradually become accustomed to it, and at length greatly relish it. The cattle fed in this manner, are asserted not only to repay the expense of their keeping by fattening speedily, but also yield a large quantity of valuable manure.

With equal success has molasses or treacle been employed; though the expense incurred by the use of this article will probably prevent its general adoption in this country. It has been used in the West Indies, in combination with farrinaceous substances, and, when these could not be procured, with cane-tops, oilcake, and other articles of dry food, together with a little hay, or not too green fodder, and has been found greatly to expedite the fattening of cattle in general, and of old and decayed oxen in particular; in the proportion of half a pint to a pint of molasses, twice in the day, to animals which have been exhausted by continual and severe

labor for a long series of years. * In the preceding facts and statements we have referred chiefly to the

feeding and fattening of middle aged and old cattle; young stock, how.

FEEDING CATTLE.

ever, require particular attention, lest their growth be impeded_which no summer food can restore--and therefore should be fed on the best and most nutritive food the farm can supply. Hence, yearlings should be fed during the winter with hay, turnips, carrots, potatoes, or other roots: where hay cannot be obtained, good straw must be substituted, the proportion of roots being increased and given with attention. For steers and heifers two years old, the proper food is hay, if it be cheap, or straw, with baits of turnips, cabbages, carrots, &c. In summer their food varies so little from that above specified, as to require no particular details on this head.

With regard to oxen used in draught, it should be observed, that they ought to be well fed, and every attention bestowed, that no food be wasted, while they are to be kept in constant employ, particularly in the commencement of spring and in autumn, when their labor is most wanted.

Some farmers indeed endeavor to support working oxen on straw alone, and the possibility of this is one great argument used in favor of their employment; but it will be generally found to injure them in a greater proportion than the saving in food.

Next to a proper stock of keep for cattle, is regularity in giving them food. In stall feeding it is too common a practice to give a certain mess, or allowance, every day, without regard to any circumstance; the absurdity of which conduct is too obvious to be here pointed out. It is a fact, that a bullock, or a fattening beast will eat with a keener appetite on a cold day, than in warm damp weather ; hence his food ought to be proportioned accordingly. By giving the same quantity every day, the animal may be cloyed; thus his appetite becomes impaired, the food is wasted, and several days will necessarily elapse before he can recover his natural appetite. By such delay he must fall away, and many weeks, perhaps months, will be required to bring him to his former flesh.

Animals have been not uncommonly supposed to consume a quantity of food in proportion to their weight: but this is purely theoretical; for in fact, various experiments have proved that although small cattle may be supported on pastures that will not carry heavy beasts, and also on more indifferent soiling food, yet, when put up to fatten the difference is of no account in proportion to their weight; though cattle of the same weight and breed will sometimes consume different quantities.

But whatever articles of food may be given, they ought to be apportioned with as much regard to regularity of time and quantity as is practicable; and if any small part be at any time left unconsumed, it should be removed before the next feed is given, otherwise the beast will loath it. Hence three periods of the day, as nearly equidistant as possible, should be selected, when such an allowance should be given to each animal as he can eat with a good appetite; which point can be regulated best by attending duly to the state of the weather, or season, and the progress he makes in flesh; for as he fattens, his appetite will become more delicate, and he will require more frequent feeding, in smaller quantities; thus the beast will improve progressively and uniformly, while a trifling loss of food only can occur by this method.

Of equal if not superior importance with regularity in feeding, is cleanliness, a regard to which is admitted, by all intelligent breeders, to be one of the most essential requisites to the prosperity of cattle. The

MANAGEMENT OF THE DAIRY.

mangers snd stalls should be kept as clean as possible; and the former especially should be cleared every morning from dust and filth ; otherwise they acquire a sour and offensive smell from the decay of vegetable matter left in them; which nauseates the cattle and prevents their feeding. After the stalls have been cleansed by constantly removing the dung and sweeping the pavement, a sufficient quantity of fresh litter ought to be strewed

over, which will invite them to lie down; for nothing contributes more to expedite the fattening of cattle than moderate warmth, ease, and repose. In fact, where straw can be obtained at a moderate price, supposing the farm does not yield an adequate supply for this purpose, the stalls and farm yards ought always to be well littered, especially during the winter season.

The quantity of manure thus made is an essential object; for it has been found that forty-five oxen, littered, while fatting, with twenty waggon loads of stuble, have made two hundred loads, each three tons, of rotten dung. Every load of hay and litter, given to beasts fatting on oil-cake, yields seven loads of dung, of one ton and a half each, exclusive of the weight of the cake. And on comparing the dung obtained by feeding with oil-cake with that of the common farm-yard, it has been found that the effects produced by spreading twelve loads of the former on an acre, considerably exceeded those of twenty-four loads of the latter manure. It is, in fact, invariably found that the value of the manure is in proportion to the nutriment contained in the aliment. By another trial it appears, that thirty-six cows and four horses, when tied up, ate fifty tons of hay, and had twenty acres of straw for litter; they made two hundred loads of dung, in rotten order for the land :-a difference in weight which is accounted for by the absorption of moisture by straw.

SECTION II.

ON THE ECONOMY AND MANAGEMENT OF THE DAIRY.

OF MILCH KINE, AND OF THE PASTURE AND OTHER FOOD BEST CALCULATED

FOR COWS, AS IT RESPECTS THEIR MILK.

We have already had occasion to remark, that the farmer should take especial care to select his stock with reference to the great object he has in view. This is eminently true in respect to the particular branch of dairying, which he means to pursue; for if his object be to sell or suckle calves, quantity must be the material consideration; and quality, if he means to produce butter and cheese.

It is a general observation that the richest milk is produced by the red cow, while the black sort is reckoned best for the purpose of breeding, as her calf is usually both stronger and more healthy than the offspring of the red species. This, however, is one of those errors which have been transmitted, through a long series of years, without being founded on fact. The red cows have, indeed, been long celebrated for the excellency of their milk; and the calves of black cows have been proverbially

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