Monthly Archives: April 2007

Cattlemen bolt from R-CALF

Cattlemen bolt from R-CALF

U.S. Cattlemen’s Association shies away from

Peggy Steward

Capital Press

A new national cattlemen’s organization has formed in the wake of changes at Billings, Mont.-based R-CALF USA.

The United States Cattlemen’s Association was formed a little over a month ago to help shape national policy that affects the cattle industry, said Jon Wooster, a San Lucas, Calif., cow-calf producer and interim president of USCA.

Many of the members at the core of USCA were involved with Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund, United Stockgrowers of America, said Wooster, who resigned as an R-CALF board member. Although Wooster is still an R-CALF member, he cited a difference in philosophy as the motivating factor in the formation of USCA.

FULL STORY Registration may be required

Cattle Preconditioning Forum: Do the Math before Creep Feeding

Cattle Preconditioning Forum: Do the Math before Creep Feeding

Calving is winding down in North Dakota, and producers soon will be making decisions that could affect their profit margin when they sell those calves months from now.

One of those decisions is whether to supply the calves with creep feed. That’s essentially any food a producer provides calves while they’re still nursing.

The amount of creep feed required to produce the desired result in the calves is a major factor producers must consider when deciding whether creep feed is cost-effective, according to Karl Hoppe, Extension Service area livestock specialist at North Dakota State University’s Carrington Research Extension Center.

“Make sure you do the math with the right feed conversions,” he advises.

Producers must keep in mind they will need more creep feed if they are using it as a replacement for pasture grasses than as a supplement, he says. For example, he estimates calves would need 5 to 7 pounds of creep feed for 1 pound of weight gain if creep feed is a supplement. However, if it’s replacing pasture grasses, calves might need 8 to 9 pounds of creep feed for 1 pound of weight gain.


Stocker Cattle Forum: Additives for Receiving Rations

Stocker Cattle Forum: Additives for Receiving Rations

Research has shown that vitamin E in receiving diets can improve gain and sometimes reduce sickness in stressed cattle. Levels of vitamin E fed have generally been from 300 to 400 IU per head per day. In a Texas study, an excellent response in daily gain during receiving was obtained with 100 IU vitamin E and 0.1 ppm of added selenium. Remember that selenium is low in many Arkansas forages and locally grown calves may need added selenium.

Copper, zinc and selenium all play roles in the immune response and should be included at proper levels in diets of stressed calves. However, there is much debate about just what constitutes optimal levels. Overfeeding of trace minerals seldom is beneficial and can cause toxicity, especially with some sources of copper and selenium. A good recommendation is to provide the upper end of the recommended levels from ingredients with good bioavailability. Feed ingredients like alfalfa and wheat middlings are, themselves, good sources on many trace minerals.


Love Affair

Love Affair

Marla Keown

The Emporia Gazette

Connie and Joe Mushrush met during their junior years at Kansas State University and were married between semesters their senior year. Connie said she always wanted to be a rancher while growing up on a “regular” farm in north-central Kansas. Her chance came because of Joe’s parents.

“When we got married, Joe and I had a pact,” she said. We would never live in town; we’d only have two kids; and we would never have hogs.”

They broke every part of that pact. While living in Emporia, Joe’s parents let them raise hogs on their land.

“Hogs used to be a real first generator of income,” said Connie.

Jon Mushrush weighs a day-old red angus calf born on the Mushrush Red Angus Cattle ranch located near Elmdale.

During those horrid hog years the Mushrushes raised enough money to purchase their first red Angus bull, in 1981. When their son Casey was 2 years old, the Mushrush’s bought their first feedlot, room for 60 cattle, near Council Grove.


Wabash Avenue neighborhood buzzed with activity after war

Wabash Avenue neighborhood buzzed with activity after war

Bob Kriebel

Lafayette Journal and Courier(IN)

Months after the 1862 Civil War prison was a memory, Wabash Avenue residents watched a building go up in their neighborhood with keen interest. In October 1862 the meat packer Henry Sample opened his brick, slate and concrete packinghouse near the Wabash River.

The job took all summer. The finished building contained 300,000 bricks shaped and fired in a couple of Lafayette area kilns. Some called the cavernous finished building “Mammoth Cave.”

In the fall meat packing season, Sample put 23 men to work dressing 28,000 hogs and 4,800 cattle for export in barrels of brine. During the same season workers at the rival J. H. Telford Company — whose slaughterhouse may have confined the prisoners — dressed 24,000 hogs and 3,023 cattle.


DVD addresses transport issues

DVD addresses transport issues

Checkoff-funded training program aims to mitigate injury to animals in transit

Capital Press

CENTENNIAL, Colo. – Cattle are typically transported two to four times during their lives, making travel the second-most-stressful event for them, next to severe weather.

And if careful animal-handling practices are not followed during travel, stress can directly affect beef quality and cost producers money.

FULL STORY May require registration

Cattle Feeding: What Is Polioencephalomalacia?

Cattle Feeding: What Is Polioencephalomalacia?

Cause: Polioencephalomalacia is caused by a disturbance in thiamine metabolism. Thiamine is required for a number of important nervous system functions. This disease most commonly affects young, fast growing cattle on a high concentrate ration and may result from a thiamine-deficient diet, an increase in thiaminase (an enzyme that breaks down thiamine) in the rumen or an increase in dietary sulfates.

A thiamine-deficient diet is usually associated with an increase in the dietary concentrate:roughage ratio. When concentrates (feed grains such as corn) are increased and roughage (forage, cottonseed hulls, etc.) is decreased in the diet, rumen pH drops. This increases the numbers of thiaminase-producing bacteria in the rumen and decreases the amount of total useable thiamine. Thiaminase breaks down the form of thiamine that the animal could normally use. Some species of plants produce thiaminase and can cause a decrease in the useable amount of thiamine when consumed. Examples of these types of plants include kochia, bracken fern and equisetum.