Video Feature: Cattle Industry Goes Green
A new breed of rancher wants to do a better job of protecting their land with environmentally friendly techniques, says UC Davis range scientist Mel George. These include grazing in ways that enhance endangered species and protecting water quality.
Think Twice on Feeding Cattle for Less Days
High feed costs in recent months have made it attractive to “grow” cattle to heavier weights and feed them fewer days than usual, but there are factors to consider, a Kansas State University animal scientist said.
“Americans and most export customers are accustomed to the taste and tenderness of ‘grain-fed’ beef,” said Michael Dikeman, meat scientist with K-State Research and Extension. “Over the years, cattle feeders have fed cattle high-grain diets to attain maximum performance and near-maximum marbling. We have created a consistent product that consumers like and have come to expect.”
Learn from example
By Miranda Reiman
Your dad would climb up on the tractor, pull out the choke, push in the clutch and start it up. “Putt, putt, putt,” and he was off to plant or rake hay or bale.
As a youngster you might have watched this routine over and over again, so it didn’t take too much formal training when you were old enough to take the helm. The first time you started the tractor by yourself and set off to mow, you felt freedom, accomplishment. That’s just one way you’ve learned by example over the years.
There were the siblings, cousins or friends who taught you how to build forts, play ball or maybe even how to find a little mischief now and again.
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Hoosiers Adopt A New Approach To Animal Care
Hoosier Ag Today
Abuses of animals on farms and at processing plants have made headlines this year, but efforts to reassure consumers about animal welfare have not made the news. Yet livestock producers are taking steps to confront concerns about animal care in a consistent and scientific manner. In light of a few, well-publicized cases of animal abuse, the livestock and dairy industries have responded with programs designed to give consumers and retailers confidence that farm animals are well-treated.
Q&A: Do I need to pull cows in until wait time has past after frost?
Dr. Jerry Volesky, Associate Professor of Agronomy, West Central Research & Extension Center – North Platte, North Platte, NE
A: Yes, similar to alfalfa, when red clover plants have been hit by a freeze, there is a 3 to 4 day period following that freeze when the risk of bloat is higher. After that, risk is similar to that before freezing.
UNL establishes COOL Website for Information
University of Nebraska
We have developed a series of educational materials and resources on COOL available online. The COOL website is: http://cool.unl.edu. Several of these materials are from USDA-AMS or other land grant universities, but several are from UNL as well, including a new factsheet that we have prepared, and two webinars on COOL featuring Mr. Lloyd Day, Administrator of USDA-AMS charged with implementing COOL. We will keep this site up-to-date as COOL rules evolve over the upcoming months.
Barnyard Animal Rescue Plan
American Red Cross
Develop a Barn Safety and Evacuation Plan
Your evacuation plan should outline each type of disaster and determine specific scenarios best suited for each situation. It should include a list of resources such as trucks, trailers, pasture and/or feed which might be needed in an evacuation as well as a designated person who will unlock gates and doors and make your facility easily accessible to emergency personnel.
Pregnancy Diagnosis For The Beef Herd
With fall approaching and the breeding season coming to an end, it is time to make critical management decisions with regards to culling cows, and planning for winter. Because of the climate in the northern part of the United States it becomes an economic liability to feed cattle through the winter that are not productive. Generally, approximately 55 to 70% of the input costs associated with a beef cattle operation are nutrition related – primarily stored feed. To ensure that producers do not feed cattle that are not productive, culling nonpregnant cows is essential. This way the cows are removed from the herd prior to winter. However, in most reports and in discussions with producers many cattlemen fail to have a pregnancy diagnosis performed after the breeding season.
AMI, NRA to Host Webinar on New Feed Rule
The American Meat Institute (AMI) in partnership with the National Renderers Association (NRA) will host a special web seminar on 13 November 2008 at 2PM EST, to educate the meat industry about the final Feed Rule scheduled to take effect on 27 April 2009.
Vitamins Important to Ensure Good Nutrition
Stephen B. Blezinger, Ph.D., PAS
In the past we have reviewed the necessity of various nutrients in cattle diets. In this issue and the one to come we’ll take a more in-depth look at the need for vitamins in the nutritional programs for cattle. In our ongoing effort to address the need to be more efficient, properly supplementing nutrients even as small as vitamins gains importance
Don’t Bet Against A Beef Producer!
Do you ever stop and think about the type of fortitude and character necessary to succeed in the beef business? It’s isn’t likely anyone involved in our business will be called upon to make a prime time NFL appearance on Sunday in a fourth quarter goal line stand to save the game. Or, go head to head with Tiger Woods in a playoff to take home millions of dollars. Or race up a mountain against Lance Armstrong. But every single day, beef producers are digging deep to find an inner strength the average person simply does not possess-and the payoff is for a lot less money!
Hold the hormones
The use of growth hormones in cattle has been a topic of debate over the last few decades.
Some experts say there is no concern to human consumption where hormones are used.
Other experts disagree. These researchers claim that cancer and other diseases are caused from ingesting these hormones.
The fact is, both studies have been done but not extensively enough to draw a definite conclusion. Since there is a disagreement between the U.S.D.A. and European Union scientists, we should call a moratorium and cease using hormones until more conclusive studies can be done.
The Next Foreign Addiction
Hoosier Ag Today
President Bush popularized the phrase “addicted to foreign oil” in his State of the Union speech a few years ago. It was and still is an accurate description of our energy policy. Each year the US imports billions of dollars in oil from other nations. Efforts to produce our own renewable fuel or drill for our own oil deposits have been met with controversy. While we argue and bicker about how we should break our imported petroleum habit_ forces are quietly at work that could lead to the next big foreign addiction: food.
ARS: Shining Torch on Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus
Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus (BVDV) is a costly disease that affects cattle and other ruminants. The virus has many nasty effects, including fever, diarrhea, respiratory and reproductive disease, abortion, birth defects and death.
The national economic impact of the disease has not been assessed in the United States, although one document from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) estimates that acute BVDV could result in losses of $50 to $100 per cow.
OK Master Cattleman Program Beginning October 20, 2008
A number of Oklahomans are quick to say they are living the American dream: They own acreages, raise cattle and feel satisfaction in continuing a part of Western tradition.
Yet to live the dream, beef producers must be able to understand and manage a great many factors that can affect the potential success of their ranching operation. “One of the best commitments producers can make to improve their beef cattle management skills is to participate in the OSU Master Cattleman program. A new OK Beef Cattle Manual, produced by Oklahoma State University, will serve as the basic reference for a series of workshops”, said Kourtney Coats, Woods County OSU Extension Educator-Agriculture/4-H.