Daily Archives: August 2, 2007

Who wants PI?

Who wants PI?

John Maday


You know the conversations that start “I have good news, and I have bad news.”

The good news is the industry has, in recent years, gained insight into the importance of BVD and its economic impacts, while also developing cost-effective testing and management strategies for controlling the disease.

The bad news is that control or elimination of BVD requires that producers identify persistently infected cattle and remove them from the conventional production and marketing system.

PI calves are carrier animals that survive after being infected with BVD virus early in gestation. While uncommon at about 1 percent of the total population, PI calves can appear perfectly healthy and still spread the BVD virus through herds and feedlot pens with great efficiency.

Identification and isolation of PI calves is the cornerstone of BVD-control strategies. Ideally, this occurs at the cow-calf stage, but some stocker and feedlot operations have adopted testing programs to protect animal health in their operations. Based on the potential losses from BVD, producers at any stage probably come out ahead, even if they take a total loss on the occasional PI animal. However, a PI calf that is healthy in other respects represents a significant value, and BVD poses no risk in terms of beef safety. This raises the question of whether producers might have an opportunity to capture some value by feeding PI calves to heavier weights.


USDA Provides Emergency Funds for Bovine Tuberculosis

USDA Provides Emergency Funds for Bovine Tuberculosis        

Missouri Ruralist

Agriculture Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Bruce Knight announced the availability of an additional $35 million in emergency funding Wednesday for the bovine tuberculosis eradication program. This is in addition to $2 million in emergency funding already available for tuberculosis control and eradication.

“This bovine TB funding will support enhanced surveillance efforts and indemnity for infected herds and brings the program significantly closer to eradication of the disease in New Mexico,” Knight says. “This funding also will support our efforts to protect the health of the national herd and prevent disease spread.”


The COOL Compromise Is Typical Of The Beltway

The COOL Compromise Is Typical Of The Beltway

Troy Marshall

Beef Magazine

After years of delaying the implementation of mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL) because of the problems associated with the law, it had come down to crunch time. Congress had to do something to make the law workable and it could no longer continue to delay its implementation, not with the China and dog food scandals on everyone’s mind.

So in typical Washington fashion, they had to appear to be responding. The revised version of mandatory COOL is an improvement of sorts but nobody will truly be satisfied with this new law. While it will not devastate the industry as the original version would have, it doesn’t address the competitive disadvantage with which it saddles beef. Nor does it close the loopholes that make the COOL component essentially worthless.


Coccidiosis in Cattle

Coccidiosis in Cattle

Ropin’ the Web

Coccidiosis is a common parasitic protozoan disease of cattle, particularly weaned calves, in Alberta. Bovine coccidiosis is seen most frequently in calves that are three weeks to six months of age. Calves become infected when placed on pastures or lots contaminated by older cattle or other infected calves. Mature cattle may become infected when they are brought in from pastures and crowded into feedlots or barns.

At least nine species of coccidia occur in Alberta cattle, but only two, Eimeria zuernii and Eimeria bovis, cause severe clinical disease. To a lesser extent, Eimeria alabamensis also can cause clinical disease. The prevalence of the different species of coccidia can vary considerably between farms, regions, seasons and age groups.


Marston Joins AHA, Hereford World Staff as Field Rep

Marston Joins AHA, Hereford World Staff as Field Rep

Cattle Today

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The American Hereford Association (AHA) and Hereford World is proud to announce Andee Marston, Manhattan, Kan., has joined the Hereford team. Marston will join the AHA/HW staff in August as the Southeast region field representative.

In this position, Marston will attend Hereford sales and events as well as assist breeders with marketing and genetic selection. He will also assist in educating members and commercial producers about AHA programs and other beef industry opportunities.

He will serve as the communication link between the AHA and breeders in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.


Farming a family tradition

Farming a family tradition

Weidmayers worry about future of small farms

By Alana West

Manchester Enterprise

Gary Weidmayer of Bridgewater Township is a farmer, born and bred, and almost always has been.

He plants corn, winter wheat and soybeans, raises cattle, and sells hay to stable owners for their horses on a farm that his father bought in 1940.

But his family ties to the Manchester area go back further than that. His relatives have lived there since at least 1840, when they helped establish and build Bethel United Church of Christ.

“My great-great-grandfather worked on that,” said Weidmayer, who said the ancestors of his wife, Karen, also worked on the project.


Feds help drought-stricken farmers

Feds help drought-stricken farmers


Daily New Journal (TN)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has offered low-interest emergency loans to Tennessee farmers hit by the drought, Gov. Phil Bredesen’s office announced today.

Rainfall deficits of between 9 to 15 inches across the state have damaged crops and cattle to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars, officials estimate.

 “We want to continue doing everything we can to help Tennessee farmers get through this unusually tough year,” Bredesen said in a statement.

He added that more help is needed.

Corn, wheat and soybean losses range from 30 to 70 percent in parts of Tennessee, officials estimate.

“It’s hard to put a dollar figure on the damages … until harvest is complete,” said state Agriculture Commissioner Ken Givens.