Extension to Offer Nitrate Testing of Forages at Husker Harvest Days - UNL CropWatch, Sept.. 7, 2012
September 7, 2012
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension will offer nitrate testing of cattle forages at Husker Harvest Days in Grand Island Sept. 11-13.
The free rapid testing will be available at the university's "big red" building on the south side of the showground at Lot 321.
"If you are concerned that drought has damaged crops or other forages and want to know if the nitrate level is too high to feed, UNL extension can address these concerns," said Matt Luebbe, assistant professor of animal science.
To have forage tested, drop off samples that match what cattle will be fed or will graze. "We can test the samples while you enjoy other exhibits," Luebbe said.
"With the rapid test, we can usually determine if high nitrate levels exist within 1-2 minutes. After that we can quantify the amount of nitrates within an hour if the preliminary test is positive," he said. "If we determine your feedstuffs are high in nitrates, there will be UNL beef extension personnel available to help you tailor a feeding program that fits your needs and resources available."
Although the tests are not as comprehensive as those done by commercial labs, Luebbe said, results will help cattlemen decide how to feed these forages, or if additional commercial tests are necessary.
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