We woke up to a whitish Christmas—maybe an inch-and-a-half of snow—some of which the cows were wearing this morning. Even though it was only 5°, they were kept warm by their dense, fluffy coats; insulating layers of fat; and internal- heating rumen.
University researchers advise cattlemen that for every degree below 20°, cows require a 1% increase in energy intake, aka food, just to maintain their body condition. Wind chill is factored into the equation as well. As I write, the thermometer reads -4°, sans wind chill, which means that each cow must eat 24% more than she usually does. I’d say that if she's pregnant, she needs even more. A cow doesn’t have to be told to eat that much more; the more inclement the weather, the hungrier she is. (Thankfully, we have more pasture than cows and plenty of hay in reserve, just in case it’s a really tough winter.)
Maybe people aren’t all that different than cows. When Hubby, Zach, and I ate our Christmas dinner this afternoon, we ate approximately 24% more than usual!
“For He satisfies the longing soul, and fills the hungry soul with goodness.” –PSALM 107:9