Monthly Archives: February 2009

BeefTalk: Alfalfa Is a Great Supplement

BeefTalk: Alfalfa Is a Great Supplement

Kris Ringwall, Beef Specialist, NDSU Extension Service

Grandpa always said sheep get the hay first, cows second and the horses third.

There was a pleasant view as I went to the auction barn the other day. The semi-trailer truck was sitting in the parking lot with a load of alfalfa hay. Under many situations, no one would really notice, but the long, drawn-out winter has many producers checking their hay inventory as frequently as the weather forecast.

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A medical term for vegetarians

A medical term for vegetarians

Steve Cornett

Beef Today

Those of you who criticize the New York Times should go over to their site and read the story about how damaging dietary fetishes can be. Follow this link to the story.

It’s an uncommonly (these days) common-sense approach to the dangers shouldered by people who approach nutrition with the simplistic “good food, bad food” attitude that leads to goofy things like bulimia, anorexia and other abnormal forms of vegetarianism.

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Injection Site Management

Injection Site Management

Jeremy Powell Assistant Professor and Veterinarian, University of Arkansas

As cattle producers, we supply this nation with beef. Today’s consumer demands that our product is wholesome and free from blemishes. In order to meet this justified demand, we all need to be diligent in assuring quality in our final product. One very important factor in providing quality in the beef we produce is performing injections properly. This fact sheet will cover a few of the basics.

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Q&A: What can I use to induce calving in a beef cows?

Q&A:   What can I use to induce calving in a beef cows?

Dr. Rick Rasby, Professor of Animal Science, Animal Science, University of Nebraska

A:   Consult your veterinarian for advise. Usually the drugs of choice depends of stage of pregnancy. Early in pregnancy, progesterone secreted by the corpus luteum (CL) that is located on the ovary is needed to maintain pregnancy.

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AFBF Disappointed with Ruling on Dust Regulation

AFBF Disappointed with Ruling on Dust Regulation

Bob Stallman, President of the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF), has expressed disappointment in the court ruling about the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ‘dust rule’.

Mr Stallman said that because of Tuesday’s ruling by the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit that upheld the EPA’s regulatory standards related to rural dust, farmers and ranchers could face additional and unwarranted regulations as states attempt to comply with federal standards.

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Don’t Become Complacent Around Livestock

Don’t Become Complacent Around Livestock

Farmers and ranchers who work with livestock need to stay vigilant around those animals.

“Most ranchers and farmers who have cattle and horses like working with animals and interacting with them,” North Dakota State University Extension Service veterinarian Charlie Stoltenow says. “The more they work with cattle and horses, the more comfortable they become around the animals. And with that comfort, producers sometimes take their animals for granted. This is a serious and dangerous mistake. Worker safety around cattle and horses requires respect for the animals and concentrating on the task at hand.”

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Select Sire Teams with CAB to Create Value

Select Sire Teams with CAB to Create Value

Cattle Today

Select Sires and Certified Angus Beef (CAB) both understand that one important aspect of creating high-quality beef is the animal’s genetic potential. With a new beef sire directory now available from Select Sires, customers will notice a high percentage of Angus sires among Select’s lineup that meet or exceed CAB’s recommendations for marbling and $ Grid (the selection index that combines the three genetic traits that influence CAB acceptance rates). Look for the CAB Targeting the Brand™ logo throughout the catalog, denoting the Angus sires that meet or exceed these high standards.

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New Northern Beef Packers plant to open by summer

New Northern Beef Packers plant to open by summer

The developer of a new, $40 million Northern Beef Packers packing plant being built just south of Aberdeen is optimistic it will open in August or September of 2009, according to The Associated Press. Dennis Hellwig said the plant will initially process 200 to 300 head of cattle daily, but it is designed to handle up to 1,500 head per day.

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Meat-labeling rules raise concerns among cattle interests

Meat-labeling rules raise concerns among cattle interests

Fort Worth Star Telegram

Texas cattle interests are watching who will blink first — the beef industry or the Obama administration, which is asking that packers and retailers go beyond meat-label rules that take effect March 16 and voluntarily spell out the countries where a steer was born, raised and slaughtered.

If they don’t go along, Agriculture Secretary Thomas Vilsack warned in a Feb. 20 letter that he might decide that the rules for multiple countries of origin be modified, a lengthy process that critics say could disrupt the market.

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Sharpshooters cull deer in bovine TB area

Sharpshooters cull deer in bovine TB area

Brad Swenson

Bemidji Pioneer

Federal and state sharpshooters have begun culling free-ranging deer in the bovine tuberculosis management area, the state Department of Natural Resources said Tuesday.

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Animal rights groups attack on food chain up 42%

Animal rights groups attack on food chain up 42%

Beef Today

Attacks on the global food chain from animal rights and environmental extremists jumped 42%—from 155 in 2007 to 220 in 2008—according to Arlington, Virginia-based Animal Agriculture Alliance (Alliance). “Worse yet, claimed attacks on food retailers in the USA from groups like the Animal Liberation Front exploded 377%,” according to the Alliance news release.

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Police ask for help finding cow killers

Police ask for help finding cow killers

Pat Bywater

When a neighbor came by Saturday night to tell Charles Hood that two of his cows were laying down on the ground in his pasture along the road, he knew it wasn’t good.

He assumed the cows were dead, and he was right. What he never expected was finding each cow dead from a single gunshot wound to the head. The carcasses were otherwise pristine.

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Burger King: Beef Costs Plunged Nearly 25% YTD

Burger King: Beef Costs Plunged Nearly 25% YTD


Burger King Holdings Corp. (BKC) said its beef costs have plunged nearly 25% so far this year as weaker global demand and more supply have sent prices lower.

Burger King is now paying $46 per case of beef, down from $61 a case at the beginning of 2009, Chief Financial Officer Ben Wells said at the burger chain’s investor and analyst conference. In 2008, Burger King paid about $45 per case of beef, which makes up 19% of food costs for the chain.

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Changes In Ovarian Structures During The Estrous Cycle In Beef Females

Changes In Ovarian Structures During The Estrous Cycle In Beef Females

An understanding of changing hormonal patterns and the normal growth and regression of ovarian structures is necessary to understand how to control onset of estrus. Estrus behavior in cows is stimulated by the production of estrogen in a large follicle. Follicles are the fluid-filled, balloon-like structures on the ovaries that contain the oocyte (egg). The large amount of estrogen produced by the follicle also stimulates a massive release of luteinizing hormone (LH). This LH surge generally occurs at the same time as the onset of standing estrus and stimulates the rupture of the large follicle (a process called ovulation) and release of the egg.

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Feedyards suffer as hamburgers replace steaks

Feedyards suffer as hamburgers replace steaks

Bob Burgdorfer


Americans are eating more hamburgers and fewer steaks as the economy wallows in recession, and that has led to huge losses at U.S. feedyards that fatten the cattle for steaks.

Each week $100 million is lost as feedyards from Nebraska to Texas sell cattle at well-below production costs.

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Storage of Wet Corn Co-Products: Silo Bag Storage

Storage of Wet Corn Co-Products: Silo Bag Storage

G. Erickson, T. Klopfenstein, R. Rasby, A. Stalker, B. Plugge, D. Bauer, D. Mark, D. Adams, J. Benton, M. Greenquist, B. Nuttleman, L. Kovarik, M. Peterson, J. Waterbury and M. Wilken, University of Nebraska

Storage of WDGS by itself in bags under pressure (300 psi or greater) can result in splitting bags If splitting is going to occur, the problem usually occurs relatively soon after bagging (within a few days). Therefore, the objective of these storage tests was to add different feeds to allow for bagging under pressure with little risk of splitting the bags.

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Reproductive Prolapses of Cattle

Reproductive Prolapses of Cattle

Jeremy Powell, DVM Extension Veterinarian, University of Arkansas

Occasionally, beef cattle develop problems with prolapses near the time of calving. A prolapse can be basically defined as an abnormal repositioning of a body part from its normal anatomical position. Two distinct types of prolapses occur in the reproductive tract of cattle: vaginal or uterine. While both types require medical attention and correction, the severity and time of occurrence differ.

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Bovine Leukosis Virus: Prevalence, Economic Losses, and Management

Bovine Leukosis Virus: Prevalence, Economic Losses, and Management

Michigan Dairy Review

Bovine Leukosis Virus (BLV) can lead to losses that include increased heifer replacement costs, loss of income from condemned carcasses of cull cows, reduced fertility and decreased milk production. Larger herds are more likely to test positive for BLV. Common causes include shared syringes and, to a lesser extent, rectal palpation. The average annual cost in a 50% prevalence herd was nearly $6,400 per 100 milking cows. This article offers an introduction on implementing a BLV management program, including how to test prevalence.

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Fraudulent McDonald’s Rumor Circulating Again

Fraudulent McDonald’s Rumor Circulating Again


A false rumor about McDonald’s once again is circulating via e-mail and the Internet.  The rumor claims McDonald’s refuses to buy U.S. beef, and imports potentially unsafe beef from South America.  The e-mail asks recipients to boycott McDonald’s.  NCBA recently has received a number of inquiries about the e-mail and Web posts.  Several producer inquiries also surfaced during the recent Cattle Industry Annual Convention.

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Just where to save and places to spend

Just where to save and places to spend

Kindra Gordon

The Cattle Business Weekly

The 2009 economy continues to be a nail-biter, and beef producers who aim to be around for another year – or hoping to be here for the next generation – know that keeping costs low is always a wise bet. So where should ranchers save and where should they spend?

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