Department of Animal Science


Date of this Version

January 2000


Published in Nebraska Beef Cattle Report 2000, published by Agricultural Research Division, University of Nebraska Cooperative Extension, and Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Nebraska–Lincoln.


A study replicated over two years involving 197 first-calf cows compared reproductive performance, growth and health of calves and concentration of Cu in liver, colostrum, and milk. Three treatments were evaluated: control (no Cu but Mo and Fe added to hay diet); 200 mg Cu from CuSO4; and 100 mg Cu from AvailaCu® added daily. In 1998 a fourth treatment, 400 mg AvailaZn® was included with 100 mg AvailaCu®. Supplementation of Cu and/or Zn did not improve total pregnancy rate, or growth and health of calves. In 1998 cows fed only AvailaCu® conceived 10 days earlier compared to controls; however, in 1997 no differences in date of conception were found. Cu in colostrum and milk, and IgG levels in colostrum and calf serum were not improved by Cu supplementation.