Daily Archives: October 8, 2007

Video Feature: How to use a grazing stick in more dense forage

 Dr. Keith Johnson Shows how to use a grazing stick in denser forage. (Part 2 of 2)

The grazing sticks are $5 each for orders of nine or fewer and $4 each for orders of 10 or more, plus Indiana sales tax and shipping and handling. To order, visit the Purdue Forage Information Web site at http://www.agry.purdue.edu/ext/forages/. Or contact Johnson at 765-494-4800 or johnsonk@purdue.edu.

Cattle Tracking System Still Languishing Four Years Later

Cattle Tracking System Still Languishing Four Years Later


WASHINGTON — Days after the United States recorded its first case of mad cow disease, then-Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman promised to speed development of a system for tracking the nation’s livestock.

The idea was to enable investigators to trace the whereabouts and history of any animal within 48 hours of a disease outbreak.

Nearly four years later, that system is still on paper.

And the revised plan the Bush administration is due to release soon seems to bear less resemblance to the system about which Veneman was talking.

The chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., said he has given up on the program until a new administration is sworn into power in 2009.


BeefTalk: Replacement Heifer Roundup

BeefTalk: Replacement Heifer Roundup

By Kris Ringwall, Beef Specialist, NDSU Extension Service

Only the Best Fertile Heifers Need to Stay Only the Best Fertile Heifers Need to Stay

There is something universal about replacement heifers for all cattle producers.

The annual fall replacement heifer roundup is always notable. It is much like a college student’s first trip back home.

There is a feeling of closure once all the kids are safe and settled in for the night. A parent then can drift off into a restful sleep, at least as restful as one can have when children are under your care.

This fall, many children have made their first formal trip to seek residence somewhere else. As they left, the sadness was heartfelt, but one soon realizes that the nights actually can be a little longer and more restful as the need to wait up slowly diminishes. Although always present, the worrying subsides about their coming home at night.


Stakes too high in flight against Cattle Fever Tick; Pest could Spread from Coast to Coast

Stakes too high in flight against Cattle Fever Tick; Pest could Spread from Coast to Coast

Cattle Today

Livestock health officials say it could cost upwards of $13 million and take as long as two years to stop an incursion of fever ticks into the formerly fever tick free areas of five counties along the Texas-Mexico border. The fever tick, less than a 1/8-inch long, is capable of carrying and transmitting ‘babesia,’ a blood parasite deadly to cattle.

“For most of the country, the fever tick has been pushed out of sight, out of mind, since the 1940s. This tick, however, is capable of transmitting a foreign animal disease and it’s sitting in our backyard,” said Dr. Bob Hillman, Texas’ state veterinarian and executive director of the Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC), the state’s livestock and poultry health regulatory agency.

“If we do not stop it, the fever tick could spread from coast to coast, except the arid lands of New Mexico and Arizona, and as far north as Washington D.C.,” stressed Dr. Hillman. “As the tick spreads, so will the need for personnel and resources. Win the battle along the Rio Grande in Texas, and other states won’t have to fight the war.”


Preg Check Your Cows……Please!

Preg Check Your Cows……Please!


When feed supplies are short, producers must seriously consider getting the pregnancy status of their cows determined. Basically, this is the perfect year to “correct” your mistakes; sell those cows that fail to conceive and those that keep calving late in the calving season. Pregnancy evaluation in cattle is an important and valuable management tool. Checking the pregnancy status of your cow herd allows you to make timely culling decisions and focus your resources on the sound, reliable breeders in the herd.

I hope “preg checking” is an annual ritual for your herd. If you have not incorporated this management practice in the past, the dry conditions this year and the need to get rid of a few cows may force you to do so. When it comes time to cull cows from your herd, pregnancy status is one of the first criteria that will determine whether a cow stays in the country or goes to town.


Calving difficulty program quickly approaching

Calving difficulty program quickly approaching

By RANDY REEVES, County Extension Agent

Marshall News Messenger

Just a reminder that the 2007 Harrison County Calving Difficulty Program will be held on Thursday, Oct. 25, starting at 6 p.m., in the Extension Office meeting room. Those that would like to attend, should call at 903 935-8413 and RSVP by Thursday, Oct. 18!

Our special guest speaker will be Dr. Buddy Faries, Extension Program Leader for Veterinary Science at Texas A&M University. The Harrison County Cattlemen’s Association will be sponsoring the program, along with Texas Cooperative Extension. The Cattlemen’s Association will also be serving a great meal, hence the RSVP, for the meal count. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear a great beef cattle program, as well as a great meal. Dr. Faries will also touch on Foreign Animal Disease issues, as we need to be aware of this constant threat and keep abreast of the ever changing world scope of animal health issues around us.


Taylor named Auburn Distinguished Alumnus

Taylor named Auburn Distinguished Alumnus

Cattle Today

MISSISSIPPI STATE — A founding faculty member of Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine received a 2007 distinguished alumnus award from Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

The Wilford S. Bailey Distinguished Alumnus Award honors Dr. Clyde Taylor’s contributions to animal welfare, his community and the veterinary profession. Taylor and fellow recipients Drs. Annelda Baetz of San Antonio and Wayne Roberts of Enterprise, Ala., accepted the awards during the college’s commencement ceremony.

 “He has had an outstanding career of service to the state of Mississippi, the region and the nation,” said Dr. Timothy Boosinger, Auburn veterinary dean. “He played a vital role in the formation of Mississippi State’s veterinary college.”


Planning For Purchasing Bulls

Planning For Purchasing Bulls


No matter what the source, knowledgeable bull procurement requires prior planning. Stay informed of upcoming sale dates, times, and locations by monitoring industry publications and websites. Make sure that catalog and mailing list addition requests are made in a timely manner. Take time to scan through bull sale catalogs in advance of sales where potential herd sires will be purchased.

Bull registration numbers are typically listed in sale catalogs. They can be obtained directly from breeders as well. Registration numbers allow bull buyers to “do their homework” behind the scenes. Breed association websites have search tools that not only allow for individual bulls to be researched, but also relatives including progeny (calves) out of the bulls or out of the bulls’ parents. Calving intervals of dams, performance ratios, current expected progeny differences (EPDs), pedigrees, and birth dates are some examples of data that are easily accessible on the Internet for many breeds. Sometimes after sale catalogs are printed, EPDs are updated prior to the sale. Looking up current EPDs on sale lots of interest can provide more reliable information about the sale offering in this case.


Don’t Be Fooled By Plant Appearance

Don’t Be Fooled By Plant Appearance


The spring and summer of 2007 in Oklahoma has been good for growing summer annuals.  Many of the fields planted with forage sorghums and millets have produced several cuttings of hay.  In many cases, producers have not worried about nitrate accumulations because moisture has been adequate to plentiful.  The plants have shown very little if any signs of stress.  However, some of the samples currently being tested from second or third cuttings are containing important concentrations of nitrates.  These high nitrate plants, either standing in the field, or fed as hay, can cause abortion in pregnant cattle, or death if consumed in great enough quantities.


Spell said he supported Beef Plant project because it was the pro-agriculture thing to do

Spell said he supported Beef Plant project because it was the pro-agriculture thing to do

By Steve Gillespie

The Meridian Star

Lester Spell has served as Mississippi’s Commissioner of Agriculture & Commerce since 1996. He is a U.S. Army veteran and a doctor of veterinarian medicine.

Spell visited with The Meridian Star’s Editorial Board last week.

Spell, a Republican, is seeking re-election in the Nov. 6 general election. His opponents are Rickey Cole, Democrat, and Paul Leslie Riley of the Constitution Party.

For more information about Spell and programs he has initiated in the state, visit his Web site at www.lesterspell.com.


Cattle show to offer wise advice

Cattle show to offer wise advice

By Eric Zimmerman

The Bryan College Station Eagle

The 36th Annual South Central Texas Cow-Calf Clinic and Trade Show will be held Oct. 26 at the Washington County Fairgrounds Sales Facility in Brenham. Registration will be from 7:15-8 a.m. and is $15 per person. All area producers are encouraged to attend and obtain information which will help them make wise management decisions in their beef cattle operations.

A great list of speakers has been recruited from Beef and Forage Committee members’ recommendations. Members from Austin, Brazos, Burleson, Fayette, Grimes, Harris, Lee, Waller, and Washington counties have provided insight into this year’s guest speakers. Jim Cathey, Extension wildlife specialist, will discuss managing yaupon to enhance wildlife habitat in the Post Oak Savannah.


Detailed data to beef up breeding

Detailed data to beef up breeding

MU professor aims for feed efficiency.

By T.J. GREANEY Columbia Tribune

Farmers know which of their cattle is the candidate for the state fair blue ribbon – it’s the heaviest creature. But most farmers wrongly assume it’s the animal spending the most time at the feeding trough.

New research is showing that what farmers don’t know about bovine appetites is eating away at the bottom line.

The term “feed efficiency” describes this developing factor, and cutting-edge breeders are talking about it. Like stock market investors who want to know how their dollars are spent, cattlemen increasingly want to use genetic research to find out how much of the corn and soybean feed they buy is paying dividends in rib-eye steaks.


Cattle industry has large impact on Covington economy

Cattle industry has large impact on Covington economy

By Andrew Garner

The Andalusian Star News

There are almost as many cows as people in Covington County. Coupled with poultry, they make a $74 million impact on the local economy.

There are an estimated 31,000 head of cattle in Covington County, 16,000 of which are beef cattle, according to extension agent Chuck Simon.

More than 160 of those are on farms operated by Covington County Cattleman’s Association treasurer and regional vice president Bobby Jackson “I have been in the cow business all of my life,” Jackson said. “I both raise and sell cattle.”


Grove Knew People, Cattle

Grove Knew People, Cattle

Chester Countian Inducted Into PLA Hall of Fame


Lancaster Farming

HARRISBURG, Pa. — The impact Conrad “Connie” Grove left on the beef industry was well remembered this year, as support for his nomination to the Pennsylvania Livestock Association (PLA) Hall of Fame came in the form of letters from across the country.

Grove, who was honored posthumously at Thursday’s Keystone International Livestock Exposition (KILE) opening ceremonies, had 14 letters written from beef industry leaders and producers asking for his nomination. Letters came from as far as Nebraska in support.

PLA’s Hall of Fame award was established to recognize excellence in animal agriculture, honoring leaders in local, state, national and international endeavors. Winners must show the ability to motivate people, have an interest in improving the livestock industry, show efforts to improve rural living and participate in the development of community affairs.


U.S. legislators introduce resolutions to block trade of older Canadian cows

U.S. legislators introduce resolutions to block trade of older Canadian cows

The Canadian Press

WASHINGTON – American legislators introduced two resolutions this week in a bid to block older Canadian cattle and beef products from crossing the border again in November.


Several legislators from both parties in the Senate and House of Representatives said Canada’s cows will taint the reputation of American beef and erode the confidence of U.S. trading partners.


Observers noted, however, that it would be difficult for them to muster enough support to pass the measures. President George W. Bush could also veto any attempt to thwart trade.