In African communities who ventures more into pastoralism, the joy of having a new born calf is unexplained. Many people rearing animals still have the belief that abnormality in animals is closely related to curses build up in the clan or the family. Others belief that witchcraft is responsible for such even with scientific knowledge.
However, this is not the case, deformity in calves is commonly witnessed during winter due to Manganese deficiency. This is happens especially when the calf is about 4-5 months old when Manganese is greatly needed in the body.Photos:(courtesy) Nation
The silage feeds used during this period may contain some yet unknown compound which prevents the absorption of Manganese. The damage is irreversible though it can be prevented by ensuring that silage intake contains no more than 75% of cows dry matter intake (DMI) and the rest of the DMI comes from other animal feeds.
Here are photos of normal calves.
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