Daily Archives: April 2, 2009

What’s Your BVDV Risk?

What’s Your BVDV Risk?

Kim Watson

Beef Today

Looking through a group of cattle, could you identify those that are infected with bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV)? Chances are you can’t.

BVDV is a disease with multiple clinical symptoms. There are three broad types of the disease (see sidebar). BVDV has been characterized as a stealth disease because it lurks in your cattle herd and causes incremental losses that add up over time

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Increasing your calf crop by management, pregnancy testing, and breeding soundness examination of bulls

Increasing your calf crop by management, pregnancy testing, and breeding soundness examination of bulls

George Perry, Beef Reproduction and Management Specialist, SDSU Animal and Range Sciences Department, Russ Daly, Extension Veterinarian, SDSU Veterinary Science Department, and Tyler Melroe, Marshall County Extension livestock educator, South Dakota Cooperative Extension Service

Percent calf crop weaned is influenced more by management decisions than by any other single factor in a cow herd, and therefore can be a very important factor in annual returns for a cow-calf operation. Percent calf crop weaned is calculated by dividing the number of calves weaned by the total number of females exposed during the breeding season.

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Simmer Down Your Cow Herd

Simmer Down Your Cow Herd             

Clay Wright

Noble Foundation

A trait exhibited by a cow herd or individuals within a herd that saves time and money is referred to as a “convenience trait.” Examples are polledness, parasite resistance, heat tolerance and calving ease. Docility is another good example. Think about all the time and money flighty, aggressive animals cost us at gathering, working, sorting, calving, etc. You know the ones – they keep things stirred up in the pen; they are inclined to jump out or tear out, hurt themselves, other animals or you! There are at least three factors that can contribute to a cow’s bad attitude.

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Angus Breeders Make Strides with Genes

Angus Breeders Make Strides with Genes


The combination of scientific and technological advancements and the willingness of Angus producers to test their animals, along with efficient communication tools such as the Internet, have aided the American Angus Association® in its efforts to keep the membership informed a genetic defect.

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Plan Ahead to Prevent Grazing Challenges on Spring Pastures

Plan Ahead to Prevent Grazing Challenges on Spring Pastures

Stephen B. Blezinger, Ph.D., PAS

Cattle Today

Cattlemen generally look forward to the spring of the year. Pasture forages typically begin growing rapidly producing large amounts of lush, green pasture. Unfortunately, given the drought conditions that many areas continue to experience, this is not the case everywhere, but many areas it is.

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IBBA Hires Director of Commercial Marketing Programs

IBBA Hires Director of Commercial Marketing Programs

The International Brangus Breeders Association is pleased to announce that Grant R. Keenen will join the IBBA staff on March 31, 2009 as the new Director of Commercial Marketing Programs. Grant Keenen is a graduate of the University of Arkansas Agriculture, Food and Life Science program with a major in Agricultural Communications.

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Q&A: What do the terms Short Solid (SS) and Short Term (ST) refer to?

Q&A: What do the terms Short Solid (SS) and Short Term (ST) refer to?

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

A: Depending on the barn, “short term” could denote age or pregnancy status.

Short term could mean that they are in late pregnancy.

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Tools to Boost Cattle Health

Tools to Boost Cattle Health

Kim Watson

Beef Today

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so the saying goes. And with animal health, like human health, preventive measures typically cost less and have better results compared to treating after a disease is evident. In addition, research and record analysis show that keeping the herd healthy improves efficiency and reduces the overall cost of production. So what do most veterinarians recommend to keep your herd healthy?

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The Suffering Cattle Industry

The Suffering Cattle Industry 

Chris Gallegos

It isn`t new news. The economy isn`t the way it was this time last year. Not only is it affecting those on Wall Street, it`s also taking a toll on area farmers and ranchers.

On the Tokach Family Ranch, things are shaping up to be a typical spring. Calving season is coming to an end, the snow is melting, but there is a sense of uncertainty in the air.

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Pasture to Plate: Meat and Poultry Tour May 14

Pasture to Plate: Meat and Poultry Tour May 14 

Debra Levey Larson

The News Bulletin

The first of this year’s University of Illinois Extension sustainable agriculture tours will follow meat and poultry production from pasture to plate. The tour will begin at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, May 14 at Eickman’s Processing in Seward.

Eickman’s Processing near Rockford was founded in 1953. “The company was started by my grandfather,” said Tom Eickman. “We’re not certified organic, but we’re a USDA federal facility and handle everything separately and do custom processing, so if a customer wants thick steaks wrapped individually, we do that.”

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NCBA Asks Administration to Oppose Increase in Ethanol Blend Percentage

NCBA Asks Administration to Oppose Increase in Ethanol Blend Percentage


The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) sent a letter to members of President Obama’s Cabinet today opposing an increase in the ethanol blend percentage for gasoline.

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Managing Genetic Defects in Beef Cattle

Managing Genetic Defects in Beef Cattle

Dr. Bob Weaber, MU Beef Extension GeneticsSpecialist

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

Over the last five years the beef seedstock sector has had to deal with a number of recessive genetic defects. The utilization of embryo transfer and AI has allowed breeders to concentrate selection to a small number of animals. While many breeders avoid mating half-sibs or sires to daughters to reduce inbreeding, it is not unusual for prominent sires to appear several generations back in pedigrees of both the sire and dam. It is in this case when there is an increased chance for the progeny to be affected by a recessive genetic defect.

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Marker Assisted Selection in Beef Cattle

Marker Assisted Selection in Beef Cattle

Alison Van Eenennaam, PhD, Cooperative Extension Specialist, University of California, Department of Animal Science

Marker-assisted selection allows for the accurate selection of specific DNA variations that have been associated with a measurable difference or effect on complex traits. It is important to realize that markers for complex traits like marbling are associated with only one of the many genes that contribute towards that trait.

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Texas’ recent snowstorm kills 3,500 cattle

Texas’ recent snowstorm kills 3,500 cattle


Houston Chronicle

About 3,500 head of cattle died during the blizzard that blasted the Texas Panhandle with as much as a foot of snow last week, officials said Wednesday.

Losses could reach $3 million, Ben Weinheimer of the Texas Cattle Feeders Association said. As many as 90 percent of the dead animals were in feedlots. The others were out on pasture and rangeland.

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Drought biggest worry for West Texas ranchers, farmers

Drought biggest worry for West Texas ranchers, farmers

Jerry Lackey

San Angelo Standard Times

Plagued with perhaps the worst drought in 90 years, Texas farmers and ranchers look to the sky searching for the cloud with the proverbial silver lining that promises the next rain and ultimately some stress relief.

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