Stock water requirements
Grazing animals need water for metabolic functioning which includes body maintenance (digestion, excretion, transfer of nutrients, electrolyte balance), growth, mobility, cooling and reproduction (including lactation). If they do not get this in adequate quantity, they suffer - activity and growth decline.
Grazing animals get water from both the food ingested, and from direct drinking. The balance between these two will depend on the amount of water contained in the feed.
The amount of water actually drunk by an animal each day can vary considerably throughout the year, and an annual average does not reflect this, even though it is a useful figure for overall planning.
Total daily water requirements of an animal will depend on:
- animal factors (type, size, life stage, and activity)
- environmental factors (temperature, humidity, windiness, water quality, feed type, feed quality, and accessibility of water)