Monthly Archives: November 2006

"Stolen Kansas Cattle Found In Dickson Co."

“Stolen Kansas Cattle Found In Dickson Co.”, Nashville (TN)

A crime that has been around for hundreds of years proved it is still thriving Tuesday as cattle , stolen from as far away as Kansas, were found in Middle Tennessee.

Tuesday was a typical one at the Dickson County Cattle Auction. Cattle farmers from around Middle Tennessee bring their stock in for the highest bidder. Monday night, however, one man brought some cattle in that seemed out of place.

Agricultural Crime Officer Max Thomas said, “They have received information about some cattle stolen out of Kansas. We got the information from Kansas and checked the animals and these are the ones.”

The officers didn’t have to look very hard to see the animals were the ones they were looking for. Their size made them stand out officers also noticed something on the cattle that is not common in Tennessee, they were branded


Seminar states benefits of grassland management

Seminar states benefits of grassland management

Tyler Duensing

Daily Nebraskan

Ranchers, as well as anyone interested in controlling conditions of the Great Plains, have much more power than they know, especially when the science element is added to the ecological equation.

This much was said during a taped seminar Monday afternoon in the Nebraska East Union that was entitled “Ecology, Restoration and Management of Semi-Arid Prairies in the Northern Great Plains,” by Pat Reece of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Department of Agronomy and Horticulture and the Panhandle Research and Extension Center.

Throughout the seminar, Reece wanted to stress many different scenarios in which crop yield can be directly affected by certain variables.

Although many people benefit from the knowledge of how to use the results of many studies across Nebraska and South Dakota, Reece said ranchers benefit the most from the knowledge.

“(It’s) a great index ranchers can use,” he said. “These are things that ranchers need to know to optimize their yield.”


NMA President Welcomes Barry Carpenter To Top Position

NMA President Welcomes Barry Carpenter To Top Position

Oakland, CA – National Meat Association President Jim Maxey announced that Barry Carpenter has accepted the invitation of the Executive Committee to become NMA’s Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director effective February 1, 2007.

Carpenter is retiring from his current position as Deputy Administrator of USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service in early January and will be precluded from handling USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service issues for at least twelve months.

NMA will maintain its headquarters office in Oakland, California, where most of its staff members are located. Carpenter, however, will work out of his home-office in Virginia, and out of an office at our legal counsel’s offices when in Washington.


Livestock producers graze wheat acres

Livestock producers graze wheat acres

The Associated Press

Topeka Capital-Journal

WICHITA — Kansas producers have put livestock on emerging winter wheat fields to graze before winter sets in, Kansas Agricultural Statistics Service reported Monday.

In its weekly crop report, the agency said nine percent of the state’s wheat has been pastured.


Mad Cow Risk Low for Hemophilia Patients

Mad Cow Risk Low for Hemophilia Patients

Baltimore Sun

WASHINGTON // Patients with hemophilia and other blood-clotting disorders face an uncertain though probably very low risk of contracting the human form of mad cow disease from medicines made using donated plasma, health officials said Monday.

There are no known cases of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, as the human form of the disease is known, in patients who have received human plasma derivatives, the Food and Drug Administration said. But there have been three cases, all in the United Kingdom, of people developing the disease after they had received red blood cells from infected donors.


North Dakota rancher group wants to beef up livestock laws

North Dakota rancher group wants to beef up livestock laws


Associated Press Writer

Bismarck Tribune

With steers mysteriously disappearing and one blatantly shot and butchered on the side of a road, members of the Horse Creek Cooperative Grazing Association in southwestern North Dakota think it’s time to beef up livestock laws.

“We just can’t afford this every year,” said Betty Steen, who lives with her husband, Bryant, across the Montana border near Baker. The couple said four of their steers disappeared in North Dakota’s Slope County in July, costing them nearly $3,000.

Cattle theft often results in felony charges, but theft is only one problem, said Darryl Howard, chief brand inspector for the North Dakota Stockmen’s Association.


U.S. officials revive plan to resume trade in older Canadian cattle

U.S. officials revive plan to resume trade in older Canadian cattle

WASHINGTON (CP) – The U.S. Agriculture Department is resurrecting its plan to allow older Canadian cattle and beef products across the border.

A new risk assessment on older animals, which are thought to be more likely to contract mad cow disease, was sent late last week to the White House for consideration but wasn’t publicly announced. The review by the White House’s Office of Management and Budget is one step toward eventually resuming trade.

The effort was halted in July when Canada discovered a case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy in a four-year-old cow, born long after a ban on using cattle remains in feed went into effect in 1997 to guard against the spread of the disease.


Placements drop in October

Placements drop in October

Cattle on feed numbers remain record high.

Marketing rate a disappointment.

Western Livestock Journal

The Nov. 1 cattle on feed report from USDA again showed record high numbers of cattle in U.S. feedlots. According to USDA calculations, there were 11.95 million head of cattle on feed at the first of the month, up 4 percent from last year. That figure is the highest recorded since USDA began the data set in 1996. The number of cattle on feed was mostly inline with analysts’ pre-report estimates.

“Cattle on feed increased 2 percent less than normal from October 1 to November 1,” said Andy Gottschalk at “This pattern will prove to be beneficial to the market midway through the second quarter of next year. A continuing trend toward lower placements this month will only reinforce that potential benefit.”

However, the placement number at 2.43 million head was the second lowest October number since the data series began in 1996 and was well below analysts’ guesses. The October 2006 placement level was 13 percent below last year and 10 percent lower than 2004. After the report was released, analysts predicted that the lower number of placements would support the market next year.


Good Grass: The Health Benefits

Good Grass: The Health Benefits

State Journal Register (ME)

Here is the health argument for grass-fed beef, according to a number of research studies:

* Saturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids

Grass is a low-starch, high-protein fibrous food, in contrast to carbohydrate-rich, low-fiber corn and soybeans. Meat from animals 100 percent fed on grass is not only lower in saturated fats, but also slightly higher in omega-3 fatty acids, which studies indicate may help prevent heart disease and bolster the immune system.


USDA supply/demand report supportive long term

USDA supply/demand report supportive long term

By Brian Hoops, Columnist

The Prairie Star

Live cattle

With the high input costs of escalating corn prices and high priced feeder cattle, feedlots and cattle producers trying to increase their marketing efforts. Rather than feed cattle out to a heavier weight and incur more expense with the high corn prices, producers are selling cattle at lighter weights. This will hurt nearby markets and cattle prices, as reflected by the spread from December to February nearing a contract low of around $3. This spread is likely to continue to widen with corn prices remaining strong.

Longer term, lighter weight fat cattle will have a bullish effect on prices as this means less beef tonnage will be available, which should be positive for April and June live cattle. Feedlots are already decreasing their interest in placing cattle into feedlots due to the high corn prices.


South Dakota University Develops Drug-Free Cattle Profitability Tool

South Dakota University Develops Drug-Free Cattle Profitability Tool

ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP)–Farmers and ranchers who want to raise cattle that are free of any growth-enhancing drugs have a tool to help them determine whether they can make a profit on those animals, the Aberdeen American News reported.

The South Dakota State University Cooperative Extension Service has created a natural cattle spreadsheet.

Natural cattle are not given antibiotics that help them put on weight faster.

“There’s a huge trend from a consumer standpoint to demand the natural product,” said Tyler Melroe, an Extension educator in Marshall County who helped create the spreadsheet, according to the newspaper.


Evaluate Management of Herd to Lower Production Costs

Evaluate Management of Herd to Lower Production Costs

by: Stephen B. Blezinger, Ph.D, PAS

Cattle Today

Part 1

Survival in the cattle industry is a based on a list of factors. Low cost producers (in all segments of the production chain) will survive in this system of competitive markets. Others (high-cost producers) will eventually be unable to compete and will exit the business. This is a basic truth in our industry today. While many producers may believe that they are at their lowest possible cost of production, given their particular situation, upon examination this may or may not be true. The following will discuss some ideas that can be implemented to help reduce production costs even further.


Simmental Association Partners with Emerge Interactive

Simmental Association Partners with Emerge Interactive

American Simmental Association/Cattle Today

The end-product value of Simmental and SimAngus genetics will be enhanced and promoted through an agreement reached between the American Simmental Association (ASA) and eMerge Interactive.

Called SimChoice, the cooperative program includes radio frequency identification (RFID) and visual tagging options available through ASA, followed up by data management and on-site verification of age and source by eMerge Interactive. Producers may choose either Simmental or SimAngus ear tags.

“Simmental crossbreds, especially Simmental x Angus, have become the most highly sought-after Continental x British feeder and fed cattle in the nation. SimAngus crossbreds offer maximum genetic value for Choice carcasses, and protect feedyards and packers from discounted yield grade 4s,” said ASA Executive Vice President Dr. Jerry Lipsey.


Cattlemen Face Political Challenges

Cattlemen Face Political Challenges Pueblo Chieftain, Colo.,

by James Amos

Nov. 18–COLORADO SPRINGS – A Colorado Cattlemen’s Association’s lobbyist said Friday that ranchers face challenges establishing new alliances now that Congress is under Democratic control.

Addressing an estimated 300 ranchers at the cattlemen’s winter conference, lobbyist Danny Williams said the Democrats’ sweep in the recent general election, and the effects of term limits in general, have left him with quite a to-do list.

Williams said Republicans traditionally have been friendlier to the wishes of ranchers and other agricultural groups, siding with them on a number of issues.

“We have a completely new landscape,” Williams said of the political swing to a Democratic majority. “We’ve had it awfully good (with Republican majorities and more balanced party rosters). But business won’t work as usual.”

The key for ranchers, Williams said, is to get to know their elected officials.


Natural cattle may turn profit

Natural cattle may turn profit

SDSU Extension has worksheet available for farmers, ranchers;

By Scott Waltman

Aberdeen American News Writer (SD)

With the popularity of natural beef on the rise, farmers and ranchers have a new tool to help them determine whether they can make a profit on the animals that are not injected with growth enhancers.

The South Dakota State University Cooperative Extension has created a natural cattle spreadsheet.

Tyler Melroe, an Extension educator in Marshall County, helped create the spreadsheet. He said the natural and organic portion of the cattle market is small, but fast growing.

“There’s a huge trend from a consumer standpoint to demand the natural product,” Melroe said.


Analyst says quality focus is increasingly important

Analyst says quality focus is increasingly important

By Troy Smith

What is it that pays cattle feeders most? Is it finished weight or carcass merit? It’s been hard for most cattle feeders to ignore the call for more pounds of beef. They have responded to market signals by feeding cattle to heavier weights. According to Cattle-Fax Executive Vice President Randy Blach, the industry has seen carcass weights increase by 12 pounds, on average, during each of the last two years.

Speaking to cattle feeders gathered for the recent Feeding Quality Forum, in North Platte, Nebraska, the Denver-based market analyst said weight has been the primary driver of marketing decisions. Quality grade has been a secondary target with yield grade a distant third. But a change is coming.


Trichomoniasis: An age-old disease may cause new problems in your clients’ cow-calf herds

Trichomoniasis: An age-old disease may cause new problems in your clients’ cow-calf herds

Cattle Health Tech

You have a client whose cow herd comes up 30% open at pregnancy-check time. The year before, his spring calving schedule became a spring-and-summer schedule due to a number of late breeders. Their calf crop was uneven, some cows thought to be pregnant never calved, and weaning weights suffered.

The cause of this scenario could be a number of different issues, but a highly likely culprit is trichomoniasis. While certainly not a new disease, trichomoniasis is extremely common in some parts of the United States, and, unfortunately, becoming more so in others.


Feeding Natural Cattle

Feeding Natural Cattle

American Cowman

A new publication from South Dakota State University discusses raising cattle without the use of implants, ionophores, or antibiotics. SDSU Extension Extra 2056, “Feeding Natural Cattle,” is available online at

Marshall County Extension Livestock Educator Tyler Melroe and SDSU Extension Beef Feedlot Specialist Erik Loe, who wrote the publication, said some consumers are willing to pay a premium for “natural” beef products from production systems that don’t use implants, ionophores, or antibiotics. Vaccines are not antibiotics and are critical to the success of natural feeding programs.


AngusSource® Completes First Year of Operation As A USDA Process Verified Program

AngusSource® Completes First Year of Operation As A USDA Process Verified Program

American Angus Association

October 18, 2006, marked the first year anniversary for the American Angus Association’s ® (AAA) USDA Process Verified Program (PVP), AngusSource. In October 2006 the program charted an increase in cattle enrollments of nearly 336-percent as compared to October 2005.

The first year of operation as a PVP was filled with program improvements, success and an overall increase of 4.3-percent in total number of head enrolled. Some highlights of the year include the month of March, which saw enrollments of more than 12,300 head of cattle in the program. In June, the Certified Angus Beef (CAB) board of directors voted to include AngusSource in the CAB program as a way for enrolled cattle to genetically qualify for the brand. July charted a 433-percent increase in producers taking advantage of the marketing support offered through the program by customizing their AngusSource Document and promoting the cattle for sale utilizing the online listing site. September introduced the AngusSource Premium Value Challenge, a contest designed to recognize producers who have received premiums by marketing their cattle through AngusSource.


BeefTalk: The Future of Beef – Environmental Issues for Beef

BeefTalk: The Future of Beef – Environmental Issues for Beef

By Kris Ringwall, Beef Specialist

NDSU Extension Service

Environmental issues were one of seven identified by the Farm Foundation as it partnered with private and public organizations to take a look into the future of animal agriculture.

In the final report, Charles Abdalla and Jennifer Lawton, writing in “Consumer Issues and Demand,” published by the American Agricultural Economics Association’s online Choices magazine (, Volume 21, No. 3, 2006), concluded their discussion regarding the current situation with these words, “… the relatively low rate of adoption of technology ….”