Stocker cattle producers have many challenges to manage: animal health, increasing costs of inputs and fluctuating cattle prices. However, one of the most difficult challenges may be Mother Nature.
The beef cattle industry has several Value Added Calf programs through which beef producers may market calves. The Integrity Beef Alliance is one such program.
Internal parasites cost U.S. cattle operations an estimated $200 million annually. While several chemicals and formulations are approved to control worms in cattle, there have been recent reports of declining efficacy of some dewormers.
During times of drought, water quantity is an obvious concern to livestock producers. Livestock consume water daily, but evaporation is the primary means of water loss from earthen impoundments.
In most years, winter pasture would be planted by Sept. 1 and some fields would be turning green at the start of October. However, throughout southern Oklahoma and northern Texas in 2011, this may not be the case because of the drought.
The drought of 2011 is set to go down in the record books as one of the most severe in history. Most livestock producers in the Southern Great Plains have not been able to put up enough hay to meet their requirements in a normal growing season, let alone during a drought when they will have to start feeding hay earlier in the year.
The Noble Research Institute Agricultural Consultants provide drought tips on a number of topics.
For most cattle producers, culling cows is not an easy task. However, some culling needs to be done each year to maintain optimal productivity.
Cattle handling facilities are necessary for proper animal husbandry. Low stress cattle handling practices combined with good facilities will allow you to process cattle safely and efficiently.
When selling feeder calves, it is understood that bull calves will often receive a discount over steer calves. Buyers justify this discount by claiming that post-arrival castration of bull calves will result in decreased average daily gains due to increased stress, disease susceptibility and days on feed.