In the Grip of Drought, Producers Turn to By-Product Feeds
by Evan Whitley
I don’t know what we have done to Mother Nature, but she is mad. Lack of rain has caused cattle producers to scramble for any means possible just to hold on to their cattle. This proposition would have been hard enough just based on this year’s lack of moisture. But, the fact that many producers are fighting the effects of last year as well has made it darn near impossible. However, if we are trying to stay positive, then one good thing that has come out of all this is we have had to stretch conventional thought paradigms and incorporate some pretty unorthodox thinking.
An example of this revolves around supplementing alternative feedstuffs to mature cows. Now, don’t get me wrong, we should rarely ever feel good about hand-feeding mature cows 75 to 80 percent of their daily nutrient requirements. However, it is nice to know we could if it is economically justifiable and the cattle are “good” enough to merit this kind of thinking.
Cattlemen seek additional feed sources
by Tom Steever
A scarcity of feed in some parts of the country has cattle feeders clamoring for new resources to sustain their cattle through the winter. Cattlemen 160 strong crammed a Springfield, Illinois extension center Wednesday to hear nutrition specialists talk about the value of feeding co-products from the processing of corn and soybeans into renewable fuels, sweeteners and beverages.
Early frost and a dry season exacted a high cost to cattlemen in lost forage, according to Dave Seibert, animal systems educator at the University of Illinois.
“Many of them had to feed either all or part of their hay this summer just to get the cows through, so they’re out looking for other sources of feed to really assist with getting their cows through the winter,” Seibert told Brownfield during a break in the day-long program, “and especially if they calve in the winter, that means that they’re nutritional demands are that much higher.”
UNL programs focus on by-product feeding
LINCOLN—Two upcoming University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension programs Dec. 5 and 19 will use ongoing UNL research to help producers determine if by-product feeding is a economical feed staple in their operations.
The expansion of the ethanol production industry in Nebraska has created opportunities for cattle producers to use byproducts as a feed source. The programs will focus on using ethanol byproducts from feed rations to storage.
The programs run from 7-9 p.m. Both programs will be at the Saunders County Extension Office located at the UNL Agricultural Research and Development Center’s August. N. Christenson Research and Education Building near Mead.
Recovering from the freeze and drought of 2007
by Bryce Roberts
Spencer County farmers are not likely to soon forget the past year. A double punch of a late spring freeze and a summer drought has left pasture and hay fields gasping. Now that some rain is again falling, producers may be wondering how well their fields will recover and if they can make changes to better prepare for future weather problems.
“There are no easy answers for recovery,” said Ray Smith, extension forage specialist with the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture. “There’s no miracle cures. Good, sound forage management is really what is needed.”
Washington County Va. to vote on hay bailout
ABINGDON, Va. – The Washington County Board of Supervisors will decide at its Dec. 11 meeting whether to spend $250,000 to help bring hay to Washington County farmers at a lower price than they’re paying now.
“The consensus of the board is this is an important industry,” Chairman Kenneth Reynolds said of agriculture in the county.
“I can remember my father saying if we’re not careful with the way development and things are going – and this was back some 30 years ago – if we’re not careful, the American people are going to go hungry,” Supervisor Dulcie Mumpower said. “We do give incentives for our industries from time to time.”
Troughs needed to stretch hay supply
by Rusty Evans
The Leaf Chronicle
Jim Neel of University of Tennessee Animal Science shares some tips with us this week on winter beef cattle nutrition:
Feed troughs will be needed for cow-calf producers who are planning to stretch their hay supply this winter with corn or concentrate feeding.
However, most Tennessee cow-calf producers do not have adequate trough space to get the job done.
When serving as a hay stretcher, corn or other concentrate feeds will need to be limit-fed. This requires trough space for all the animals to eat at the same time.
Webcast Tonight: Getting through the Winter on a tight Forage Supply
The April freeze in addition to the dry summer left some Indiana pastures in less than ideal condition. However, this creates an opportunity for growers to make improvements, according to Keith Johnson, Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service forage expert.
To help livestock owners get through the winter on a short forage supply, Purdue Extension will host an IP-videoconference & Webcast Nov. 20 from 7-9 p.m. EST that may either be viewed online or at locations around Indiana.
To view on the IP Video connection:
Contact your local Indiana Extension office.
To View via the internet:
Participants with a high speed Internet connection, web browser and Microsoft Windows Media Player, can log on and watch the videoconference live from their own computer at mms://video.dis.purdue.edu/agcomm or CLICK HERE. This link will be made active on the day of the event. Bookmark this page to return to it on Nov. 20.