For the last several years, Driehoek Feeds has played a leading role nationally in the feeding of Game.

With the introduction of breeding programmes for rare species as well as the nutritional requirements of
captured animals, the feeding of game has become extremely specialised.

The game farmer faces a wide range of nutritional challenges which vary over different seasons and which
are often aggravated by droughts on the one hand, and by severe parasitic infestations in wet seasons,
on the other.
(see Internal Parasites and Game under Articles)

The fact also remains that nutritional research on game species is limited when compared to the research
conducted on domesticated farm animals, and therefore
Driehoek Feeds works closely with both specialist
Veterinarians and Nutritionists. Through regular analysis of liver samples, information is continually added
to our database to assist in refining the current knowledge available used to determine the optimum
levels of specific vitamins and minerals included in our range of products.

As a result of specialisation in the game breeding industry, and the value of particularly rare species, no
single product can meet all the requirements for the successful breeding of game and
Driehoek Feeds is
thus proud to present a range of products to satisfy different requirements
(see Game Feeding - Be
Informed under Articles).

Driehoek Feeds uses carefully selected raw materials of the highest digestibility to ensure that the animals
are fed only the best for optimum performance. No "Acacia bush species" are used in any of our products
whatsoever
(see The Importance of Digestibility under Articles).
 
Testimonial from Shambala Game Reserve

During the winter of 2008 Driehoek's Breeding Muesli literally became the lifeline for
our herd of +- 80 Sable antelope. The herd lost condition due to intensive competition
for food from other herbivores within the system and our veterinarian consultant felt
at the time that there was little hope of recovering in time to ensure a fair calving
percentage.

We started supplementing the herd with Breeding Muesli immediately and could see a
significant difference within 4 weeks, and complete recovery in less than a two month
period.  We enjoyed a normal calving season and the herd is now back on the Driehoek
Standard Game Cubes given the abundance of the grazing at the moment. 

Hanru Strydom
Wildlife Manager
Shambala Game Reserve 
wildlife@shambalagamereserve.co.za
The breeding of rare species has become not only as capital intensive as that of race horses, but also just as
specialised.

The value of these animals makes efficient reproduction imperative and one can simply not afford to have
any female animal skipping a breeding season as a result of nutritional deficiencies. The inter-calving
period has become an important economic aspect and the female breeding animals need to ovulate
when required.

Bulls, too, need to be in good condition, but not overweight, and require healthy hooves to ensure that
they can cover the females comfortably when required. 

Driehoek Feeds' Breeding Muesli is a speciality product designed with an emphasis on fertility and healthy
strong hooves to meet the requirements of all breeding animals. The
Breeding Muesli contains a unique
combination of vitamins and minerals and the biological availability of all nutrients is carefully considered
before inclusion in the formulation.

Zinc and Selenium in the organic form, high levels of Biotin, B group vitamins and anti-oxidants (Vit E and Selenium), combined with all the other trace minerals all play a vital role in the success this product ensures. Great care is taken to supply all the critical vitamins and trace minerals for these captive animals.
Driehoek's Boma Feed has specifically been developed for animals in captivity. Captive animals usually
display some degree of captive stress (ranging from very mild to severe) and one of the most immediate
implications of stress is the failure to eat properly. This is aggravated when the animals are  fed in an
unfamiliar form (eg pellets). 

The aim of the
Boma Feed is, firstly, to present the animals with feed in a format with which they are
more familiar and, secondly, to address the highly specific vitamin and mineral deficiencies from which
captured animals are known to suffer. The
Boma Feed thus is composed of materials resembling as
closely as possible what the animals know. Although this is very difficult to achieve for all species,
the coarse, textured nature of the product is generally accepted more easily than the usual pellets
which are a completely foreign form of feed for most animals.

When feeding different captive species, it is important to consider gastrointestinal morphology, foraging
strategy, as well as plant digestibility. With this in mind,
Boma Feed uses a combination of various types
of hays, legumes and roughages with both high and intermediate digestibility to meet the nutritional
demands of a wide range of species. Although these demands vary between species, the success of the
product is based on supplying a range of different types of fibre and also on a consistent supply of
nutrients in a palatable and safe format.

Great care is taken to supply all the critical vitamins and trace minerals for these captive animals.
Vitamin A, the B group of vitamins and also Vitamin E, are all critical as is the role of Biotin (Vitamin H).
Selenium is very important in general for a healthy immune system and is also known to play an
important role in the prevention of white muscle disease.
Boma Feed provides Selenium partly in the
organic form in order to ensure its biologic availabilty to the animal.

Boma Feed is a coarse mixture containing small pellets which bind all the vitamins and minerals. This
ensures that these important ingredients are not lost on the ground and assist in sensitizing the animals to
pellets, which becomes important once they are moved out of the boma and are changed to another
feeding system.
 
 
Driehoek Feeds - 2009
Testimonial from Waterberg Game Dealers

Anybody involved in the Capturing of Game will fully understand that with the amount
and diversity of risks involved in this business the last thing one needs to worry about is
how to get captive animals to eat and maintain their body condition and health.

The Game Boma Feed developed by Driehoek Feeds was the answer we had looked
for for years. The product has a natural feel and texture and the game become used
to it more easily than anything else we have ever tried. The product is specifically
designed for animals in captivity with all the related problems, and the results are phe-
nomenal.

                                                       Since using Boma Feed we can concentrate on our flying
                                                       and all the other business related matters knowing that
                                                       the proper nutrition of our Game is taken care of!
 
Testimonial from Silent Valley

Over the last nine years we have had a great deal of success breeding some of the
most precious sable in Africa, both in terms of reproductive efficiency and the main-
tenance of good all round health.  As our sole supplier of prepared feed throughout this
time, Driehoek Feeds has been a key partner in this achievement.

Driehoek Feeds has brought three essential elements to bear:
  A passionate, enduring interest in producing the right feed for our needs, all on the
    basis of good science

  Excellent service in terms of being both reliable with delivery, but flexible enough to
    assist us when needs have changed

  A quality product which is also good value for money
  

Mike Fischer
Silent Valley
Driehoek's Standard Game Cubes is generally regarded as the premium standard game feed on the
market today. Quality controls during manufacturing, and the results obtained with this product, have
led to this becoming the most popular supplementary feed for general use amongst Game Farmers.

While
Driehoek's Breeding Muesli and Boma feeds, are speciality products for specific applications, the
Standard Game Cubes have a wide variety of uses ranging from feeding  rare species to supplementing
the more common plains' game.

Breeders specializing in rare species, however, are advised to change to the
Breeding Muesli when
general body condition is expected to drop, or when the available grazing is of a very poor quality, in
order to prevent any negative impact on reproduction. However, during periods of good quality
grazing where generally good body condition is prevalent, the
Standard Game Cubes will be ade-
quate even for rare species breeding herds (see testimonials).

The
Standard Game Cubes supplies good quality protein while the vitamin and trace mineral composition
is specifically formulated to meet all requirements. High levels of Vitamin A, the complete group of B
vitamins, and Biotin are specifically included, as well as the all important anti-oxidants Vitamin E and
Selenium (see complete list of minerals in table below).

Control of parasite infestations is critical with both breeding and captured animals.
Driehoek Feeds takes
a very cautious approach with the treatment of parasites through the feed. We do prepare medicated
mixtures for use against parasites but only under absolutely controlled conditions. Some of the active
ingredients used in the medication of infested animals appear to be meeting with resistance from the
parasites in localized areas. We are however colaborating closely with veterinarians specialising in game
to jointly find solutions for specific herds in need of parasite control. 
Please contact us any time for further discussion and also see Internal Parasites and Game under Articles.
Feeding Directions:

Boma Feed can be fed ad lib to all game in Captivity. 
To help prevent digestive disturbances it is always advisable to restrict intakes initially to around 1% of
live body mass with additional hay during the first two weeks of feeding especially when animals
appear to be eating greedily.
Feeding Directions:

Driehoek Standard Game Cubes is a complete game feed and can be fed ad lib. It is important, however,
to introduce the feed slowly to  animals when in small camps and especially during the first two weeks hay
and /or grazing should be available at all times.

Where grazing is still available it is recommended to feed at 1 to 2% of bodyweight per day depending
the quality on the grazing and the condition of the animals.
The terminology "lick" is interesting when used in the context of animal nutrition and stems from a previous
time when only salt and minerals were provided as supplementation. These were normally supplied in rock
hard blocks and animals could at best literally "lick" these blocks. Salt was always added to licks to limit
the intakes and worked since only minute quantities of minerals are actually required. The philosophy,
theory and practical application behind supplementary feeding since then has, however, changed drasti-
cally especially on smaller game farms where grazing can become very limited in winter which will impact
negatively on reproduction.

Most game species are classified as ruminants and due their digestive system have the ability to derive
sufficient energy from large amounts of very fibrous material such as dry veld. This is achieved as a result
of the ruminants' symbiotic relationship with trillions of fibre fermenting micro-organisms in the rumen
which enable the individual to subtract the energy from this fibrous material. These organisms have a very
short life cycle, and as they die off they in turn supply valuable quantities of nutrients (mostly protein)
directly to the host animal. Provided that these bacteria have enough substrate to live off, this beneficial
symbiotic process continues effectively.

With supplementation, the aim is to supply the bacteria in the rumen with enough protein,  in short supply
naturally due to the dry winter grass, to further reap the benefits of this symbiotic process. The quantities
required, however, are more than what can be "licked" up. Although the term "lick" is still used today, this
is rather a process of supplementing mainly protein, but also all the necessary macro- and trace minerals,
to alleviate the shortages of the natural grazing.

The
Driehoek Game Lick is supplied in a cube similar to the Standard Game Cube. It is classified as a
Protein, Phosphate and Mineral supplement and also contains salt to limit the intakes. These
Game Lick
Cubes feed the micro flora in the rumen which, in turn, feed the animal. The
Game Lick is more concen-
trated than normal feed, and with the added salt, intakes are much lower as well. Under normal circum-
stances the
Game Lick can be supplied ad lib as the high salt percentage will limit the intake. This is
advantageous from a management point of view since
Game Lick can be put out twice a week
(depending on the size of the troughs) as opposed to a feed which needs to be put out daily.

Cubes have many advantages over blocks:

1) Cubes are, on average, around 50% cheaper than blocks for the same nutrients supplied. This is mainly
    because of the intensive process required to manufacture blocks as well as the chemicals and hardeners
    required to achieve the desired density.
2) Density is consistent due to the efficiency of the pellet press.
3) Cubes result in better intakes and better control of intakes.
4) Cubes can be poured into any kind of trough (Duncan applicators and "Oom Gielie se Dipbak").
5) Cubes can also be poured directly onto the ground (preferably on rocky areas).

Points to remember when buying licks.

1. Always check and note the weight of the bag or block and calculate the price/kg of lick.
2. Study the registration label with emphasis on the protein and minerals supplied.
3. Check whether the product is urea free (always safer to use for game).
4. Never buy blocks with medication for internal parasites.
    (
see Game and Internal Parasites under Articles for more details)
5. No research has confirmed the effective use of aloe for tick control thus it is pointless to pay more for
    licks containing this ingredient.
DRIEHOEK FEEDS LUCERNE CUBES (Vitamin & Mineral Enriched)
Driehoek's Lucerne Cubes consist of First Grade Lucerne pressed into cubes for ease of use when required.
Pure cane molasses syrup and additional phosphate are added to the mixture before pelletting, and it is
also further enriched with essential vitamins and trace minerals.

Lucerne Cubes is a high Protein, roughage supplement which can be used to supplement the diets of all
game, horses, cattle, sheep and goats. Using
Lucerne Cubes minimises the normal handling problems
associated with using Lucerne bales, for instance:

High wastage
Storage space required
Fire hazards
Losses due to mould
Big price variations
Unknown bale weights

From a nutritional point of view,
Lucerne Cubes are correctly balanced. The inclusion of molasses syrup
significantly increases the energy value, while the addition of phosphate addresses the normal Calcium:
Phosphate imbalance of Lucerne. The required salt level is also ensured. The enrichment of the essential
vitamins and trace minerals ensures the product can be utilised without requiring any other supplemen-
tation.
Feeding Directions:

As in all feeding programs, animals should be adapted slowly to a new ration and overeating by hungry
animals should be prevented.
Lucerne Cubes are ideal to feed as roughage where additional protein is also required.
 
Testimonial from Shambala Game Reserve

Waterberg Elephant Back Safaris uses the Elephant Cool Cubes with tremendous
success. Our elephants roam freely and are supplemented with the Cool Cubes
supplied by Driehoek Feeds while in their luxury stables at night. The condition of
these Elephants is evident to all who see them and although our elephants are
extremely well handled and do not operate under stressful conditions, the
elephant handlers are convinced that the high Omega-3 containing oils have
had a very positive influence on the general tranquility of our elephants.

We believe that the combination of this excellent product and a sustainable
elephant density is a winning combination to which the Elephant themselves
bear witness.


Hanru Strydom
Wildlife Manager
Shambala Game Reserve 
wildlife@shambalagamereserve.co.za
Elephant back safaris in South Africa have taken off and these unique rides are now offered in several
areas all over the country. The growing numbers of handled elephants has led to the demand for nutritio-
nal supplementation to complement the very specific needs of these unique and highly trained animals.

Driehoek Feeds has been working very closely with Waterberg Elephant Back Safaris over a period of two
years to develop a product that not only ensures that the nutritional demands of the elephants are fully
satisfied, but also enhances calm behavior.

In the development of this product the following factors were all considered:

1) The elephant is a hind gut fermenter and displays a very similar digestive system to that of the horse.
    All of the well researched factors contributing to digestive disturbances in the sensitive foregut of the
    horse, as well as those known and acknowledged to calm horses with excitable temperaments, have
    been evaluated and selectively incorporated into the design of this diet - hence the name "
Cool Cubes".

2) The rapid gut transit time of elephants is consistent with a digestive system designed to deal most effec-
    tively with young and tender plant parts, but with the capacity for high throughput and the ability to
    partially digest plant fibre for energy, courtesy of the symbiotic micro organisms inhabiting the hind gut.

3) In most situations with Elephant Back Safaris, the natural required time for grazing of up to 18 hours is
    somewhat negatively impacted upon due to the time required for handling and training of the
    elephants, movement between stables and visitors' area etc. This necessitates a supplement of high
    nutrient density which is absolutely safe to use and guaranteed not to cause any digestive disturbances.

The use of oils with a high Omega-3 content has been proven not only to have a considerable calming
effect, but also to act as an anti inflammatory, to prevent laminitis, to boost the immune system, to
ensure a healthy skin and to support a strong metabolism in general. Another benefit of Omega-3 oils is
the positive influence on joint health which might play a long term beneficial role for elephants which
knee down more than they would do so under natural conditions. 

Since these elephants are generally used for tourist related activities, a calm temperament is of cardinal
importance. All available nutritional and technological research related to factors which might play a
role in enhancing calmness, is incorporated into the
Elephant Cool Cubes. These include the use of
Omega-3 oils, high levels of all the B-vitamins affecting the central nervous system and, specifically, a
high fibre content (ADF>30%). The starch content is kept low to prevent any possible irritability caused by
undigested starch moving into the hind gut with a subsequent lowering of ph creating an undesirable,
acidic environment.
Feeding Directions:

Adequate grazing and/or hay should be available ad lib at all times. Elephants do best when allowed as
many hours free grazing per day as possible. When natural grazing is not available, hay should be fed ad
lib.

The
Elephant Cool Cubes should be used to supplement the grazing or hay and fed at 0.2 to 0.6% of body
mass per day (e.g. 8 to 24kg per 4 ton elephant). Preferably limit
Elephant Cool Cubes to 12kg per
feeding to assist in preventing colic and digestive disturbances.
Feeding Directions:

Feed ad lib to game to supplement natural grazing
Feeding Directions:

The
Breeding Muesli should be used to supplement the available grazing and not as a complete feed.
In general we recommend feeding approximately 1 to 1.5% of live body mass depending on the quality
of gazing available as well as the condition of the animals (e.g. adult Sable Antelope 2 to 3kg and
Buffalo 7 to 11kg). 

It is always good practice to do regular worm counts. Please consult with your veterinarian in this regard
as it is very important to use the correct procedure when collecting droppings for the parasite count.
Once the result of the parasite count is known, the correct plan of action can be formulated if required.