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Abstract

Excerpts from the report Introduction: Commercial urea is a synthetic nitrogen compound used to replace part of the protein in the ration for cattle, sheep, and other ruminants. A ruminant cannot utilize urea directly, but microorganisms in the rumen convert urea to protein which can be digested. These microorganisms also need carbohydrates to feed on. It is advantageous to use commercial urea because the combined cost of urea and the requisite carbohydrates is usually much less than the cost of oilseed meals or other common sources of equivalent protein. This report presents the results of a national survey on urea used by cattle and calves on feed. It provides answers to such questions as how much urea is being consumed by cattle on feed, in what forms it is being fed, what percentages of feedlots and cattle on feed are being supplied with it, what are the most common sources of supply, and what regional and size group differences may be present.

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