Monthly Archives: July 2009

Effects of Shipping and Heat Stress on Embryonic Mortality in Cattle

Effects of Shipping and Heat Stress on Embryonic Mortality in Cattle

Sarah Fields, Graduate Research Assistant in Beef Reproduction, and Dr. George Perry, Beef Reproduction and Management Specialist, SDSU Animal and Range Sciences Department

Embryonic loss is the greatest economic loss in the cow/calf industry, affecting number of cows carrying to term and percent calf crop weaned.

Fertilization rates are usually between 90% and 100% when semen is present at ovulation. Fertilization usually takes place, but conception rates (number of animals that conceive divided by number of animals inseminated) are usually around 70% for natural service or artificial insemination.

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Silage Fermentation and Preservation

Silage Fermentation and Preservation

J.W. Schroeder, North Dakota State University

Quality silage is achieved when lactic acid is the predominant acid produced, as it is the most efficient fermentation acid and will drop the pH of the silage the fastest. The faster the fermentation is completed, the more nutrients will be retained in the silage.

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Pickle Jar Ethics

Pickle Jar Ethics

Tracy Rehberg

Calf News

Because the media has adopted photographs of cute pink pigs to serve as the icon for essentially any hard news report on the spread of human H1N1 influenza, I ought to write about swine flu and its like-it-or-not correlation to social opinion and animal welfare; but, I won’t. At least, not this time. You see, I’ve just returned from a sun-filled day at Wrightsville Beach. I’m full of sea air, suntan lotion and the promise of summer.

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Nutritional Guidelines for Backgrounding Calves

Nutritional Guidelines for Backgrounding Calves

Dr. Greg Lardy Beef Cattle Specialist – North Dakota State University, Dr. Chip Poland, Area Livestock Specialist

4-State Backgrounding

Backgrounding is a common practice in many beef cattle operations in North Dakota. In some operations it serves as a way to add value to feedstuffs or to increase revenue from the beef cattle enterprise. This circular details nutrient requirements for backgrounding calves and gives information related to the nutrient content of feeds available in North Dakota.

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Working with your lender in turbulent times

Working with your lender in turbulent times

Tom Lippert, Central Lakes College

Iowa Farmer Today

How can I as a producer help my lender see my credit request as an acceptable risk?

I need to provide my lender with a 3- to 5-year history of financial statements which would include balance sheets and income statements. When putting my balance sheet together it is important that I accurately value the assets.

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The Meat of the Problem

The Meat of the Problem

Ezra Klein

Advocated for Agriculture

The debate over climate change has reached a rarefied level of policy abstraction in recent months. Carbon tax or cap-and-trade? Upstream or downstream? Should we auction permits? Head-scratching is, at this point, permitted. But at base, these policies aim to do a simple thing, in a simple way: persuade us to undertake fewer activities that are bad for the atmosphere by making those activities more expensive.

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Senators Express Concern Over Livestock Disaster Assistance Rules

Senators Express Concern Over Livestock Disaster Assistance Rules

Beef Today

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, joined with a bipartisan coalition of Senators led by Chuck Grassley (R-IA), in questioning if several new rules of the Livestock Indemnity Program will actually help farmers and ranchers if their herds incur losses from harsh weather.

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Minn. Man Pleads Not Guilty in Cattle Theft

Minn. Man Pleads Not Guilty in Cattle Theft


A Minnesota man accused of stealing cattle from a Watertown auction barn in March has pleaded not guilty and is to go on trial Sept. 17.

Joey Varner of Pierz, Minn., was indicted by a grand jury on one count of aggravated grand theft. He is accused of taking 188 cattle that were under U.S. Bankruptcy Court control.

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BeefTalk: 2009 Production Benchmarks Are In

BeefTalk: 2009 Production Benchmarks Are In

Kris Ringwall, Beef Specialist, NDSU Extension Service

In reality, the need is to grow profitable cattle that a producer can appreciate and still meet industry needs.

The new scores for beef cattle performance have just arrived. The scores are the annual North Dakota Beef Cattle Improvement Association (NDBCIA) benchmark values gathered from producers utilizing the CHAPS (Cow Herd Appraisal Performance System) program.

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Arkansas Animal Cruelty Law Takes Effect Friday

Arkansas Animal Cruelty Law Takes Effect Friday

Cattle Network

Arkansas’ top lawyer says he wants a new law making aggravated cruelty to dogs, cats and horses a felony to be used to stop severe abuse, not curtail rural traditions.

"Some folks have got it in their minds that this (law) makes it illegal to put a dog in the back of a pickup truck," Attorney General Dustin McDaniel said Thursday. "Let me assure you that I like my job and I’d like to be re-elected, and I’m not crazy enough to make it illegal to have your dog in the back of your pickup truck."

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Sanofi-Aventis pays Merck $4B for share in Merial

Sanofi-Aventis pays Merck $4B for share in Merial

Palm Beach Post

Pharmaceuticals company Sanofi-Aventis SA said Thursday it has agreed to pay $4 billion in cash to U.S. drugmaker Merck & Co. Inc. for its share in the two companies’ animal health joint venture Merial.

Merck said earlier this year it would sell its 50 percent stake in Merial in order to assure antitrust regulatory approval of its merger with U.S. rival Schering-Plough, which also has a large veterinary health care business.

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Organic Review Finds Little Benefits

Organic Review Finds Little Benefits

An independent review commissioned by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) shows that there are no important differences in the nutrition content, or any additional health benefits, of organic food when compared with conventionally produced food. The focus of the review was the nutritional content of foodstuffs.

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Economic indicator? Cattle theft on rise in rural Alabama; Escambia farmer loses 13 cows

Economic indicator? Cattle theft on rise in rural Alabama; Escambia farmer loses 13 cows

Connie Baggett

Alabama Live

Bad economic times could be driving an increase in livestock theft, according to state and local officials, with one Brewton-area farmer losing 13 brood cows this month.

"There have been more cases reported this year in Alabama than I can ever recall, and that is many years back," said Billy Powell, executive vice president of the Alabama Cattlemen’s Association, which represents the interests of cattle owners and the industry. "And it’s not just cattle theft, but farm crime in general. We are facing a significant problem."

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Students Learn Food Animal Practice

Students Learn Food Animal Practice

California Farmer

Nineteen veterinary students are spending five weeks this summer on dairies and with veterinarians to gain an inside view of the rewards and challenges of food animal practice.

The Early Veterinary Student Bovine Experience Program aims to increase the number of veterinary graduates in careers working with dairy or beef cattle. The School of Veterinary Medicine, cattle producers, practitioners and corporate sponsors have sponsored the hands-on program since 2001.

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Sell Your Calves at the Kentucky Certified Hereford Influenced Sale

Sell Your Calves at the Kentucky Certified Hereford Influenced Sale


Are you looking for a good place to sell Hereford and Hereford-influenced calves? The Kentucky Hereford Association is organizing a new feeder calf sale Oct. 27, 2009 at 6p.m., at the Bluegrass South Livestock Market in Stanford, Ky.

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Video Feature: Livestock Zone of Influence, 2 of 2

A short video using low-stress stockmanship showing how to use the zone of influence when working livestock, part 2 of 2. Thanks to the Farm Animal Council of Saskatchewan and Intervet Schering-Plough.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

H.R. 1549, determining antibiotic use

H.R. 1549, determining antibiotic use

The Cattle Business Weekly

Several cattle groups are opposed to H.R. 1549, the "Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act of 2009" and are asking leadership in the U.S. House of Representatives to ensure the measure is not attached to other federal legislation.

H.R. 1549, and its companion bill in the U.S. Senate (S. 619), prohibits the use of animal antibiotics for non-therapeutic use and calls for all "critical antimicrobial animal drugs to go through a second Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval process within two years of enactment of the legislation."

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An Invisible Cost

An Invisible Cost

Southern Livestock Standard

    When cattle get sick, it hurts performance and quality. But it is not always easy to tell those cattle from the healthy ones. Cattle with chronic pneumonia can cost producers nearly $80 per head, without showing signs of illness.

    The loss of gain would be the biggest cost, and then loss in quality grade would come in second, said Darrell Busby, Iowa State University (ISU) Extension beef specialist. The third loss would be in treatment cost.

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Food Safety Bill Fails in House

Food Safety Bill Fails in House

Hoosier AG Today

  Wednesday afternoon, H.R. 2479, the Food Safety Enhancement act of 2009, failed to win passage by the U.S. House of Representatives. The legislation would have increased funding and given more authority to the Food and Drug Administration to police food safety. The vote was 280 to 150. A two-thirds supermajority was necessary for passage.

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Farm Bureau group hopes to set standards before someone else does

Farm Bureau group hopes to set standards before someone else does

Codi Vallery-Mills

The Cattle Business Weeekly

The Ohio Farm Bureau had a win recently when its resolution to create a Livestock Care and Standards Board passed the Ohio House 83-16 and the Ohio Senate 31-1.

"The board will help Ohio farmers continue to provide excellent care for our animals, while also ensuring safe, affordable and locally raised food," testified Kim Davis, a Ohio Farm Bureau trustee and farmer, to House lawmakers.

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