This is the time of year that you should start to track the performance of your beef cow herd’s body condition as pastures mature and forage quality, as well as quantity, start to go down.
The Beef Cow Body Condition Score App is one of our apps that will help you track and manage the body condition of your herd. The BCS App is an app that you simply download, and then head to the pasture and take profile pictures of selected cows. If you are a novice to body condition scoring, you can compare them to reference photos of cows that represent Body Condition Scores from 1 to 9.
Determine the BCS that best describes each cow and save the photo within the App for future reference. If you would like to arrange your cow’s photos by pasture, that functionality is also available. You can then use these stored images as references at any point in the future to determine how best to manage your nutrition program to achieve the desired body condition for the entire herd.
There was a previous blog done about the app and the link is below. Feel free to get yours downloaded if you haven’t already done so
Recently, Oklahoma State University has also taken the app and featured it in their extension video.
Last year, we took another stab at the app market and we launched the LICS App. (Livestock Intake Calculator for Supplements). This app is also free and is available for both the Android and IOS platforms.
The app has several features but it is primarily designed to be easy to use, flexible and robust enough for those who may want to incorporate more detail when calculating free-choice supplement intake. The LICS app is targeted for beef producers, but because of the flexibility built in, it can easily be used for any species of animal that is consuming a free-choice supplement, such as CRYSTALYX®.
Because free-choice supplements are available to groups of livestock that can vary in herd size and the number of days the supplement is available, it can be challenging to accurately estimate average consumption per head per day. Thus, it can be unclear what level of supplemental nutrients are actually being provided. The LICS app gathers required information for determining an average intake estimate for the herd. You will need to know inputs like the number animals in the group/pasture, the days that the animals consumed the supplement, and also an estimate of how much supplement was consumed for the given consumption period. An estimated average consumption per head per day for the supplement is then calculated by the LICS app. Depending upon how much supplement is remaining, the app can also project when additional supplement should be provided, so your herd does not run out. If you know the amount that you paid for the supplement on a per ton basis, LICS will also calculate your supplement cost on a per head, per day, basis.
One feature that is particularly useful for beef cow-calf producers is an option of including calves in the supplement intake calculation. Where both cows and calves will have access to self-fed supplements, consumption of the supplement by the calves should be considered. The LICS app has the ability to include calves into the intake calculation. The LICS app will only calculate estimated supplement consumption by the calves if they weigh 400 pounds or more.
Regardless if you are raising livestock or have companion animals such as horses, the LICS app can help you better manage your nutritional program when offering free-choice supplements in grazing or non-confined type conditions. The few inputs required will provide an easy way to estimate the actual supplement intake when spread across the herd.
Download your FREE LICS app today!