K-State Researcher Offers Cattle Producers Tips for Winter
Angus e- List
As the temperature drops outside, so could a cow’s health. While cattle producers may not be able to eliminate all of the stress that winter places on their herds, research shows that there is a significant correlation between feed efficiency and feeding-site selection, said Joel DeRouchey, livestock specialist at Kansas State University (K-State).
The thermo neutral zone for healthy cattle is 23° to 77° F, DeRouchey said. When the temperature outside falls below or rises above the animal’s comfort zone, the body needs to produce more energy to keep the animal cool or warm.
When this happens, cattle need to receive enough nutrition to help keep them healthy and in good condition. It is also important that feeding sites be placed in well-drained areas to reduce water, mud and manure buildup.
A buildup of water could not only waste portions of hay bales, but could also decrease the nutritional value of the hay, creating a need for alternative nutrient sources to maintain herd health and performance, DeRouchey said. Excessive mud and manure around feeding sites also means that cattle will have to exert more energy to reach their feed.
Estimating the Amount of Grain Left in the Field
Estimating the amount of corn down in a field helps producers determine a grazing strategy. An 8-inch ear of corn contains about .50 pound of corn grain, therefore 112, 8-inch ears would equal 1 bushel (1 bushel = 56 pounds). By counting the number of ears; the amount of corn can be estimated. If corn is planted in 30 inch rows, count the number of ears in three different 100 foot furrow strips and divide by two to give an approximate number of bushels per acre. Small ears and broken ears should be counted as half ears, while very large ears should be counted as an ear and a half. Any amount beyond 8-10 bushels per acre will require a well-planned grazing strategy to ensure that too much grain is not consumed.
Beef Quality Audit sets new Benchmark
Centennial, Colo., Sept. 27, 2006 — The executive summary of the 2005 Beef Quality Audit, partially funded by the beef checkoff, establishes a new benchmark for quality goals and targets by the year 2015.
“The audit results prove producers are doing things right to improve beef quality — and the findings support the idea that improved quality has a positive impact on beef demand and our bottom line,” said Ran Smith, a Kansas veterinarian and chair of the checkoff-funded Quality Assurance Advisory Board.
Pasture profitability can improve
Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle (TN)
Gary Bates, professor of plant science and forage specialist, shares tips to help pastures:
High-quality, productive pastures are a key to a successful cow-calf operation.
Here are a few things that all producers can do to improve the profitability of the forage component of their farms.
Be efficient with fertilizer. Fertilizer prices have increased dramatically, and there is no reason to think prices will be going down.
When dogs attack livestock
By JUSTIN KELLEY
The Fulton Sun (MO)
Under Missouri law, livestock producers have a right to protect their animals from attacks by dogs. When pets damage livestock was the subject of the Callaway Livestock Producers meeting Tuesday night.
Missouri Bar member and Boone County livestock producer Stephen Harris conducted the meeting, and talked about the laws and his personal experiences of protecting his own animals.
Calf-herding competition draws cheers in New City
By SUZAN CLARKE
THE JOURNAL NEWS
NEW CITY – The earthy smells of horse permeated the crisp fall air at the Diamond Derby Ranch today, where a paddock near the front of the property was the focus of the high drama known as team penning.
Yells of “Yaa! Yaa!” were among the many boisterous encouragements being shouted by 15 three-rider teams as they rode into a herd of 30 lowing cattle, spurring the animals to flight.
The purpose of the game was to get three specific calves into a pen at the other end of the field within 90 seconds, while keeping the rest of the herd on the opposite side of the playing area.
USDA: Cattle On Feed Up 14% From Last Year
Yankton Press & Dakotan
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the Nebraska feedlot cattle inventory on Oct. 1 was up 14 percent from last year on the same date.
The USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service says the total of 2.22 million cattle on feed in Nebraska is the largest October inventory since 1994
Made in Iowa: Vigortone has link to Dutch firm
Des Moines Register
A homegrown Iowa business is part of a Dutch company with operations in 30 nations.
Vigortone Ag Products of Hiawatha was founded in 1912 by an Iowa veterinarian, E.B. Fenton, to manufacture vitamin and mineral supplements for livestock feed. The business grew and expanded into livestock feed, premixes and feed ingredients for dairy and beef cattle, horses, swine and sheep.
5 Essential Things About Superbugs
E. COLI 0157:H7, WHICH RECENTLY TAINTED U.S. SPINACH, MAKES SHIGA TOXIN. SUCH TOXINS ALSO CAUSE DYSENTERY AND WORK LIKE THE DEADLY TERRORIST POISON RICIN.
Though drug-resistant bacteria and viruses are an ever-growing problem, the drug industry has cut way back on development of new antibiotics and antivirals. Firms make little money off such drugs, which are used for only a few days, preferring to bring out “lifestyle” drugs that treat long-term conditions like erectile dysfunction. Only three new antimicrobials have hit the market in 25 years.
IOWA RESEARCHERS have found a potential vaccine against E. coli 0157:H7. Cattle, the source of the virulent microbe, would get the vaccine, causing them to make antibodies that strip the bacteria of proteins harmful to humans.
Key Factors that Affect the Percentage of Cows Cycling
at the Start of Breeding
By Glenn Selk, OSU Extension Cattle Reproduction Specialist
The breeding season is only weeks away for those herds that have a fall calving program. The most important factors that determine if, and when, a cow returns to cycling activity were reviewed by Dr. Jeff Stevenson (http://www.oznet.ksu.edu/library/lvstk2/sections/SRP850D_repro.pdf). Over a period of 6 years, Kansas State scientists used more than 2,200 beef cows in estrous synchronization studies. As a part of these studies they determined which cows were cycling before the start of the breeding season both before and after synchronization treatments. They then looked at the previous data about each cow and determined the major factors that influenced the likelihood that she would have returned to heat by the start of the breeding season. The research indicated that three main factors were the most important determinants as to whether the cow would recycle before the breeding season began. Body condition, age of the cow, and the number of days since calving were the biggest influences on incidence of cycling activity before breeding
Body condition: Cows ranged in body condition score from 1 (extremely emaciated) to 7 (very fleshy). As body condition score increased the percentage of cows cycling increased in a linear fashion. The Kansas data reported that there was an 18% increase in percentage cycling for every 1 full condition score improvement.
Age of the cow: The percentage of first calf two-year-olds cycling was about 10% less than mature cows that were having at least their second calf. The extra nutrient requirement for growth clearly limits the cycling activity at the beginning of the breeding season of two-year-olds. Also two-year-olds are in the stage of life where the baby teeth are being replaced by permanent teeth. Some of these young cows have problems consuming roughage similar to “broken-mouth” older cows. This explains why many producers choose to breed replacement heifers ahead of the cow herd and therefore give them more days before the breeding season begins for mature cows.
Numbers of days since calving: Cycling activity was also influenced by the number of days since calving. For every 10 day interval since calving (from less than 50 days to 70 days) the percentage cycling increased by 7.5%. A short calving season is important because it allows a higher percentage of cows to be cycling by the start of the breeding season.
Four inducted into the North Carolina Livestock Hall of Fame
Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler inducted four longtime livestock supporters into the N.C. State Fair Livestock Hall of Fame today, honoring each person’s considerable contributions to Fair livestock and horse shows. The four were honored in a special Hall of Fame ceremony at the fairgrounds.
Inducted were John Goodson of Raleigh, John Wayne Strowd Sr. of Pittsboro, Glenn F. Boyd of Waynesville and Chuck Miller of Apex. Each man received a plaque and pin, and will have his picture hung with previous honorees in the Livestock Hall of Fame Room in the Jim Graham Building.
Goodson, honored in the beef cattle category, is a former competitor in the Angus cattle competition and often provides cattle for area juniors to show at the State Fair and other local fairs. Goodson has owned and operated Springfield Angus for more than 25 years and was inducted into the N.C. Angus Hall of Fame. He currently serves as president of the N.C. Cattlemen’s Foundation.
Strowd, honored in the dairy cattle category, has been showing Holsteins at State Fair shows for more than 40 years. He is a third-generation dairy farmer and has passed on his love of farming and showing cattle to his sons and grandsons who continue to show cattle at the State Fair. Strowd has been active in the Carolina Holstein Club, N.C. Holstein Board and the N.C. Farm Bureau.
Boyd was inducted in the Commissioner’s Meritorious category for his many years of support in the youth livestock show at the N.C. State Fair and N.C. Mountain State Fair. Boyd has been a county director for the N.C. Cattlemen’s Association for more than 30 years and is a member of both the Carolinas Limousin Association and the National Limousin Association. Boyd operates Half Circle B Ranch with 100 head of cattle.
Miller, honored in the general supporter category, is a ninth-generation livestock farmer. Miller worked with the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services for more than 30 years and served as superintendent of many of the livestock shows for more than 35 years. Miller began the Fair’s first Junior Beef Heifer show in 1972 and developed the nation’s first meat goat grades.