FAQ

Conservation Stewardship Program – Animal Enhancement Activity –ANM17‐ Monitoring Nutritional Status
of Livestock using the NIRS/ NUTBAL PRO System
Helpful hints and frequently asked questions:

Can I collect and freeze fecal samples before I ship them?
Yes, freezing of the fecal samples do not negatively affect the NIRS analysis and will help ensure that shipped samples arrive in good
condition.
Can I collect samples over time and then wait and send in all six samples at the same time?
No, in order to have the best information possible to support your decision making, we highly recommended that you send in
samples over the course of the entire year. Doing so will provide you with near real-time nutritional information and will help
mitigate nutritional deficiencies and/or extra expenses incurred due to unnecessary supplementation.
How much manure is needed to complete the analysis?
As part of our sample processing procedure, all samples are dried to a consistent moisture content level and then ground in a
sample mill. The processed sample basically looks like green flour. It is for this reason that we recommend sending in no more than
a pint-sized sample of manure in a quart sized zip‐lock style bag. Please do not use the slider style bags, as these tend to leak during
transit.
How long does it take to get my NIRS results and NUTBAL reports?
Normally this process takes 3 to 5 days from the time the lab receives the sample until results and NUTBAL Reports are ready to be
sent. If an advisory is requested this will take additional time as the advisories are written on an individual basis.
In addition, the lab typically experiences an extremely high number of samples in the last few months prior to the yearend contract
deadline. To ensure the quickest turnaround time, we advise that samples be submitted over the course of the year or growing
season to avoid the year-end deadline rush.
Is the GANLAB a private commercial Laboratory?
No, the GANLAB is a unit within Texas AgriLife Research, a division of the Texas A&M University System. Our focus is to offer
diagnostic analysis and decision support software that is used as a nutritional monitoring program for grazing livestock. In addition
to our own research, we facilitate the research of other entities with our NIRS capabilities. We operate under the Center for Natural
Resource Information and Technology (CNRIT), a center within Texas AgriLife Research that is devoted to providing technology
solutions in the realm of natural resource management. We provide CNRIT the capability to assess and manage animal nutritional
well‐being and to develop project-specific NIR applications. Though research is our primary focus, we also offer nutritional
analysis to the public through our commercial services. Since we are a university entity, our rates for services are solely for cost
recovery, and not for profit.
I, or my NRCS representative, would like to run my own NUTBAL reports. Is this possible?
Yes, if you or your NRCS representative would like to run your own NUTBAL reports you can use the online system and/or download
the “standalone” version of the software from our website.
What is the best way to find additional information about the GANLAB and offered services not cover in this correspondence?
Our website has the most up to date information about the GANLAB along with downloads and training information.

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