Winter has made its presence known across the nation; leaving some wondering what part of the US they are in and others chuckling at the first group as they add another layer of clothing.
We use this blog as a vehicle to provide advice and perspectives related to cattle production. However, this time around, I’d like to focus on the men and women who are raising those cattle.
The sale barn is a great way for producers to discover the value of their calves, yet it can have a negative connotation when talking about animal health. The trip to and from as well as the sights, sounds and smells of the sale barn put stress on the animals, resulting in challenges to the immune system. However, cattlemen can give their animals a helping hand by providing them with proper nutrition to support immune function and gut health.
Stress... it's part of life. Whether it's caused by work, school, neighbors, we all deal with it in our own way and move on. Livestock experience stress too. We tend to focus on stress in calves and feedlot cattle and how that affects performance and ultimately the bottom line. But what about the cows in the pasture? To be honest, I never really thought about it either. This year’s wildfires and weather have brought it to mind several times though, do cow have a memory for stressful events?
It wouldn’t be right to take time to salute the beef industry without doing the same for the dairy industry. After all, what goes better with a nice steak than a dish of ice cream? As a salute to the hard-working families of the dairy industry, I offer you 10 facts to wow your non-ag friends and family.
May is Beef Month. It’s a time to celebrate all that the beef industry has to offer, regardless of breed or management. To celebrate the industry we all love, I offer you 10 things to share about cattle that your non-ag friends may not know.
Cattle on pasture. There is something iconic, almost romantic, about a herd of cattle spread across a lush, green pasture with the wind dancing through the grass. Grazing cattle is the foundation of the cattle industry, the heart and soul, steeped in tradition. Many producers take advantage of placing growing or stocker cattle on pasture; each adding their own spin on the age-old tradition.
Change is in the air. That was one of the themes of the meetings I attended while at the Black Hills Stock Show this past week. Change with markets, change with the administration in Washington, DC and it can seem that uncertainty is the new normal. However, we can be certain of one thing, proper nutrition and supplementation of your cattle herd is more important than is has ever been. With the cattle markets down, it can be tempting to look for places to cut costs. Nutrition should never be on that list, here’s why.
As 2016 comes to a close, we can look back and wish for the golden days of the cattle market, or we can look to what’s just beyond the horizon. We all know what good looking back does, so here are a few words/concepts to consider as we enter a new year, a new market cycle, new rules on feeding cattle and a new administration.
Technology is everywhere. Our homes are wireless, tractors all but drive themselves, and you can even get reminders on your phone to put out fresh barrels. As much as technology is readily accepted in other areas everyday life, there is hesitation when it comes to technology and food production. Public concern over the use of feed additives in food animals is high with those outside the ag community. However, what would happen if the growth enhancing technology (GET) we take for granted in cattle production (ionophores, implants, etc.) where no longer available?