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Dr James Drackley – NASEM Requirements for Calves and Update on Intensified Feeding

Dr. Jim Drackley is Professor of Animal Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. Jim grew up on a small dairy farm in Minnesota and received his Ph.D. in nutritional Physiology from Iowa State University. Since joining the faculty of the University of Illinois in 1989, his research program has focused on improving the health, welfare, and productivity of dairy cattle through nutrition. Specifically, his research deals with improving nutritional management of dairy cows during the dry period and transition to lactation, and nutritional management of baby calves to improve health and growth. Dr. Drackley has published extensively, has trained more than 45 graduate students, and is consistently on the “List of Excellent Teachers” as voted by his students at the University of Illinois. He has received numerous awards for his research and has worked with dairy and industry groups around the world. He served as a member of the National Research Council sub-committee to produce the 8th edition of the NASEM publication “Nutrient Requirements of Dairy Cattle”

Dr Jim Drackley highlighted the updates to the 2021 NASEM calf chapter (Chapter 10) and the calculations behind them. The areas he focused in on are:

  • the use of empty body weight (EBW) to remove the influence gut fill has on true calculations
  • starter intake estimation equations have been developed
  • energy requirement updates
  • calculation of feed energy values revised
  • new metabolizable protein (MP) system adopted
  • mineral requirement system has changed
  • some vitamins updated
  • comprehensive revisions of text sections on nutritional management

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