One of the many ways we be sure our animals are happy and healthy is to be certain that “free choice” minerals and salt are available at all times for the alpacas, sheep, and goats. Free choice means they are able to choose for themselves when they need to take their vitamins! We use custom supplement formulas as well as mineral feeders to ensure each of our animals maintains good health, production, and growth.
Did you know that sheep can die from copper toxicity, yet goats thrive with copper in their diet? And, the alpacas have a completely different mineral formulation and requirement!
In-Barn Sheep Mineral Feeder
The baby lambs usually start nibbling at the mineral feeder before they show consistent interest in the corn and grain available for them. This is Little Miss SBH0018 taking one of her first tastes at the big kid mineral feeders.
Alpaca mineral feeder
The alpacas have access to their barn (lovingly referred to as the “Alpaca Palace”) throughout the entire year. The minerals are protected from the elements, and easily accessed next to the automatic water fountains.
However, the goats and sheep both transition to the back pastures for summer vacation. This means that we need to have minerals available for them in the field.
In-Fence Sheep Mineral Feeder
Brian made this in-line feeder for the sheep out of a wood box turned on its end, and braced with 2, 4″x4″ posts tamped into the ground for the front and screwed into a fence post at the back for stability. Inside is a large black rubber bowl that holds the mineral and salt mixture.
Goat Gulch Mineral Feeder
I had to giggle a bit at this photo, because it wasn’t meant to capture the mineral feeder! There was obviously a bit of a scuffle in the goat building, and the goats bent the barn metal which caused the mineral feeder to fall. Because of the high salt content (and high humidity), they were still able to consume their minerals even if it was sideways.
For us, we’ve found that the loose mixed minerals work better, because the blocks (at least for the sheep) were consumed like a bucket of candy on Halloween night!
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