Phosphorus deficiency

Conditions when likely to occur:

History of very limited superphosphate application on soils naturally deficient in phosphorus. Lactating cows and young growing cattle.

Occurs if cattle consume <0.5g P/kg dry matter.

Clinical signs: Pica (eating bones and other rubbish), poor growth, soft bones and bone fractures, infertility, post calving red water.

Management strategy to prevent disease:

Best long-term solution is to top-dress pasture with superphosphate.

Lick with dicalcium phosphate mix with salt and molasses (care with superphosphate licks because of risk of fluoride toxicity).

Sodium acid phosphate injection for acute deficiency.