Stock water requirements

Grazing animals need water for metabolic functioning which includes:

  • body maintenance (digestion, excretion, transfer of nutrients, electrolyte balance)
  • growth
  • mobility
  • cooling
  • reproduction (including lactation).

Animals suffer if they do not get enough water. Their activity and growth decline.

Grazing animals get water from both food and drink. The balance between these two depends on the amount of water contained in the feed.

The amount of water drunk by an animal each day varies a lot throughout the year. An annual average does not reflect this variation — but the overall figures are useful for planning.

Daily water requirements

Total daily water requirements of your livestock depends on these animal factors:

  • type
  • size
  • life stage
  • activity.

It also depends on environmental factors:

  • temperature
  • humidity
  • windiness
  • water quality
  • feed type
  • feed quality
  • accessibility of water.
Page last updated: 19 Jun 2020