Daily Archives: July 30, 2007

Alternative Feeding Programs and Feeds for Drought Stressed Beef Cow Herds

Alternative Feeding Programs and Feeds for Drought Stressed Beef Cow Herds

Ted Perry, Beef Nutritionist

Land O Lakes Purina Feed

Beef cows traditionally graze forages during the spring and summer months. However, during droughts when forage production stops, alternative feeds and feeding programs need to be used to feed the herd until forages are growing again. When deciding on an alternative feeding program there are several options to consider. The goal is to get the cows re-bred, maintain pounds produced per cow, and minimize feed cost per pound of calf sold. Daily feed costs are going to increase during a drought. Options to consider are feed availability, equipment needs and storage. Integrated Resource Management (IRM) data shows that most producers budget pasture costs at around 50 cents per cow/day. The ideal alternative feeding program will meet the cows’ requirements as close to budgeted costs as possible.


Survey: Majority of producers see value in Beef Checkoff Program

Survey: Majority of producers see value in Beef Checkoff Program


Seven in 10 producers approve of the Beef Checkoff Program, according to a summer survey of 1,225* beef and dairy producers, commissioned by the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board.

Findings in this survey track with results from previous studies that have continually reflected a majority approval rate. In recent years, approval rates have consistently ranged between this summer’s 68 percent and 73 percent. Disapproval rates have remained virtually the same, at 17 percent, over the past 12 months.

“We’re pleased with these results but we still have work to do,” said Beef Board member Sugie Sartwelle , a Texas cattlewoman and chairman of the Joint Producer Communications Committee. “Informed producers consistently give the checkoff high marks. We want those who consider themselves uninformed to know more about how their checkoff dollars are being invested, because all producers have a stake in this program.”


Cattlemen Give House Farm Bill Mixed Review

Cattlemen Give House Farm Bill Mixed Review


NCBA Applauds Process; Urges Senate to Address Shortfalls

Washington, D.C. (July 27, 2007) – The U.S. House of Representatives passed its Farm, Nutrition and Bioenergy Act of 2007 (H.R. 2419) today by a vote of 231 to 191.

The bill contains many improvements for cattlemen, such as increased funding for conservation programs and some modest fixes to the mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL) law.  But flaws remain within the bill, such as an Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) cap and payment limitations for conservation.  This language makes many ranchers ineligible for Farm Bill conservation programs.   


Forage Options

Forage Options

Russ Mathison, Forage Agronomist

University of Minnesota Beef Team

North Central Research and Outreach Center at Grand Rapids, MN

Many forage producers are thinking about what to plant this spring. Renovation of forage stands is a smart move, as they tend to lose productivity over time. Stand loss from winter injury or disease is easy to see, but research has shown that even older forage stands that appear healthy do not yield as much forage as younger stands. Many forage producers are curious whether there are additional forage species which may have some advantages over the ones traditionally grown, or if there is a forage species especially adapted to a specific need in a forage production system. The forage seed industry and University personnel have been active in recent years evaluating additional species and developing improved varieties of traditional ones, some of which are likely to have a useful role in many forage production systems.


Pasture Management Tips for August

Pasture Management Tips for August

Beef Magazine

Twig Marston, Kansas State University Extension beef specialist, offers these tips for managing pastures and cow herds in August:

·         Enhance grazing distribution with a mineral mixture placed away from water sources.

·         Observe pasture weed problems to help plan control methods for next spring.

·         Monitor grazing conditions and rotate cattle to different pastures, if possible and practical.

·         Be prepared to provide emergency feeds if pastures run out in late summer. Providing supplemental feeding now can help extend the grazing period.


BeefTalk: Now is the Time to Plan for Preconditioned Calves

BeefTalk: Now is the Time to Plan for Preconditioned Calves

By Kris Ringwall, Beef Specialist

NDSU Extension Service

Calves That Excel Calves That Excel

The need to provide protection for calves, whether one weans them at home or sells them right off the cow, is a vital part of successful management.

The time is fast approaching in the annual cow-calf cycle when thoughts shift from production to marketing. Now is the time to start thinking about preparing calves for market.

One might say this is old hat by now, but it really isn’t. The need to provide protection for calves, whether one weans them at home or sells them right off the cow, is a vital part of successful management.

At the Dickinson Research Extension Center, the calves receive vaccinations for infectious bovine rhinotracheitis (IBR), bovine viral diarrhea type I and II (BVD), bovine respiratory syncitial virus (BRSV) and bovine parainfluenza 3 (PI3). These viral agents typically are present and can negatively affect calves.


Water Essential For Cattle In High Heat

Water Essential For Cattle In High Heat


When temperatures soar into the 90s, making sure cattle have enough water is critical, a North Dakota State University livestock expert says.

“Cattle can withstand a lot of high heat if there’s adequate water for them to drink,” adds Karl Hoppe, area Extension Service livestock specialist at the Carrington Research Extension Center.

Three factors producers need to remember are quantity, access and quality.

“Cattle can drink a lot of water during hot weather — 20 or more gallons a day,” Hoppe says.


Heat Stress a Problem, Even for Northern Plains Cattle

Heat Stress a Problem, Even for Northern Plains Cattle

High heat can take its toll on cattle.

North Dakota State University

Heat stress can be a serious hazard for cattle, even in northern Great Plains climates.

The past week’s extremely hot and humid weather conditions have resulted in some reports of heat stress problems in beef cattle, particularly from feedlot operations in regions where the weather has been especially humid.

Cows and nursing calves are less susceptible but also can be affected by the high temperatures, says Greg Lardy, the North Dakota State University Extension Service’s beef cattle specialist.


Why Not Be Pro-active With Marketing Strategy??

Why Not Be Pro-active With Marketing Strategy??


How many times have you heard it? “I raise good cattle, but I just take them to town and I take what they give me!” Many Oklahoma commercial cow calf ranchers do a great job of selecting, feeding, caring for, and taking to market top quality cattle, yet do very little, if anything, about promoting the products they sell. Perhaps most of us are not boastful by nature and hope that the quality of the calves we raise will speak for themselves. Nonetheless, doesn’t it make sense that we would do everything in our power to assure that our calves bring top dollar at market time?


Superior Hosts Largest Video Sale:Herefords Command Added Value

Superior Hosts Largest Video Sale:Herefords Command Added Value

American Hereford

Superior Livestock Auction hosted its Week In The Rockies XVIV video auction July 9-14 in Steamboat Springs, Colo. The company’s largest auction in history included 325,000 head consigned by 1,370 producers from 27 states.

Results of the auction confirm demand for Hereford feeders continues to increase. All cattle eligible for the Certified Hereford Beef (CHB) program were denoted as such, with the CHB® logo appearing on the screen.

Perkins-Prothro Ranch, Boise City, Okla., Matador Ranch, Guthrie, Texas, and Craig Pelton, Dunn Center, N.D., sold Hereford-influenced cattle that topped the sale in each of their weight classes and regions. The Herefords overall averaged $2.05/hundredweight (cwt.) above the average for their respected weight class.


Alabama farmers want to export more to Cuba

Alabama farmers want to export more to Cuba

By Marty Roney,


JASPER, Ala. — Dorman Grace looks over his north Alabama farm and wonders how chickens may play a role in ending the trade embargo between Cuba and the United States.

Grace, a third-generation poultry and cattle farmer, and others like him, are already able to do business with Cuba under a law passed by Congress in 2000 allowing the sale of humanitarian and agricultural products to the island nation, which slightly eased the trade embargo in place since 1962.


Sprouted wheat can be fed to cattle

Sprouted wheat can be fed to cattle

High Plains Journal

Good news for this year’s rainfall-drenched cattle operations: Sprouted wheat can be used efficiently in beef cattle rations, as long as an aflatoxin screening is performed if mold is present.

The screening is important because aflatoxins are among the most potent toxic substances that occur naturally, said Dave Lalman, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension beef cattle specialist.

Ingestion of aflatoxins in contaminated food or feed can result in poisoning called aflatoxicosis.


No grounds to change risk assessment of beef hormones, says EFSA

No grounds to change risk assessment of beef hormones, says EFSA

Cordis News

There are no grounds to amend the risk assessment currently in place in Europe on hormone residues in beef, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has concluded, following a review of new scientific data.

Growth-promoting hormones (GPH) are used to increase the weight gain of cattle. However, these substances are banned in Europe because of concerns about possible health risks from residues in the meat and other edible parts of these animals.

Previous epidemiological data have linked the amount of red meat consumed and certain forms of hormone-dependent cancers. Following the emergence of new scientific data related to the risk characterisation of natural and synthetic GPHs, the European Commission asked EFSA to review its last risk assessment of the matter, which dates back


How to order a steak and not the sizzle

How to order a steak and not the sizzle

USA Today

If you’re headed to a modern steakhouse, bone up on these common menu terms:


Beef is hung in climate-controlled rooms (sometimes lined with salt) for three to six weeks but sometimes longer. As the moisture evaporates and enzymes break down tissue, the beef shrinks, the texture becomes gelatinous, and the flavor becomes concentrated.


Tough cattle industry has bright future

Tough cattle industry has bright future

Argen Duncan

El Defensor Chieftain

Cattle ranching is a tough business, but things look bright for the industry in the Socorro area, a rancher and a cattle feeder have said.

Rancher E.B. Armijo said raising beef cattle is tough like any other business. However, he is optimistic about current conditions in Socorro County.

“Cattle prices are pretty fair right now,” he said. “What it will be later on, we don’t know, but at the present, they’re pretty fair.”

Orville Moore, owner of Southwest Cattle Feeders in Lemitar, said the past two or three “Our numbers are down, beef consumption is up, the market is up and things are looking brighter now than in years,” he said.


Neighbors cry foul as megafarms increase

Neighbors cry foul as megafarms increase

Christine Ferretti

The Detroit News

SENECA TOWNSHIP — Floyd and Mary Lou McVay enjoyed country living for more than three decades until a livestock factory was built next door.

Now, the stench of 4,000 pigs, crowded shoulder to shoulder in two enclosed barns, is circulated by blaring fans just 400 feet from their house.

The staggering odor from concentrated livestock operations is the price being paid by a growing number of rural Michigan residents as economic pressures force farmers to super-size operations to maximize profits and productivity. The agribusiness trend over the past decade is toward moving a larger number of animals into smaller spaces, creating enormous amounts of waste.