Feeding & nutrition

What animals eat has a major impact on performance, profitability and quality of the end product. For intensive livestock (pigs, poultry and sheep and cattle in feedlots), cereals, legumes and protein meals make up the majority of the diet and are formulated to meet diet specifications. For extensive animals, quality of pastures and year-round supply become major issues.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development supports the livestock industry by conducting a range of research activities, often in collaboration with industry and scientific groups. This research concentrates on determining nutrient requirements, evaluating feed ingredients and studying product quality (for example, eating quality of meat). The identification of alternative feed ingredients is an important activity, since the demand for more traditional feedstuffs will increase.


  • Annual ryegrass toxicity (ARGT) is a potentially fatal poisoning of livestock after consumption of annual ryegrass infected by the bacterium Rathayibacter toxicus (formerly known as Cl

  • This pasture condition guide can be used from the web pages or by downloading the linked documents.

  • In a dry season where feed, water and finances are limited, removing less productive animals as soon as possible is a good option.

  • Confinement feeding (also referred to as lot feeding or feedlotting) is an intensive feeding system in a confined area where all, or the majority of, feed and water is supplied to the contained anima

  • Western Australian agriculture experiences variability in its winter growing season (May–October): late starts, early finishes and 'dry seasons' with rainfall low enough to cause serious plant and

  • Dry pastures in Western Australia provide good early feed after senescence but rapidly become unable to maintain stock.

  • The aim of carbon farming is to sequester more carbon and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, as part of Australia's response to climate change.

  • There are a number of factors that may contribute to pigs having high backfat (P2) and therefore graded fatter than what is required by the market.

  • Mycotoxins are secondary toxic chemical products produced by organisms of fungal origin.

  • Managing good nutrition of sheep in the Mediterranean climate of south-west Western Australia requires constant monitoring and planning.


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