Copper deficiency

Conditions when likely to occur:

Known deficient regions such as coastal sandy soils, granite soils, peat swamps, exacerbated by excess molybdenum or lime application.

Deficiency typically occurs after extended period of green feed, with copper more available in dry feed. Growing stock, breeding stock.

Clinical signs: Rough coat, sandy colour Herefords or bronze tinged Angus colour poor growth, diarrhoea.

Management strategy to prevent and terat disease:

Copper injection before any high risk periods of winter and spring or copper capsules to provide longer-term (12 months) prevention.

Top dress pasture periodically (usually 5–7 years) if copper in herbage low.

When applying molybdenum to pasture, add copper if copper marginal in herbage. Discuss dosage and options with your veterinarian and agronomist.

Clinical response trial comparing response to treatment with either copper injection or copper capsules to untreated control animals most definitive.