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The Cattle Connection

The cattlemen's connection to timely topics, current research, and profitable management strategies

Open cows? Diagnosing the failure to breed

Open cows are simply a fact of the cattle business. Managing to achieve a 100% pregnancy rate is simply not cost effective, nor should it be your goal. Having a few open cows every year implies some selection pressure is being put on fertility and animals best-fit for your environment. However, if the number of open cows is excessive (greater than 5%), evaluation of management, nutrition and he...

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Expand your Market with Stockmanship

Posted by Travis Meteer - Marketing
Classified ad, online sale, private treaty bid-off, live auction, and the list can go on and on. There are numerous ways to market your cattle, but have you thought about how to market yourself? Many times cattlemen are guilty of focusing on the cattle and not the other pieces of the puzzle. To set your cattle apart from the others, I suggest you market stockmanship. Stockmanship, in my...

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Developing Replacement Heifers

As feed and commodity prices fall and cattle prices continue to hold firm at record levels, the incentive to add pounds with "cheap" feeds is present. Proper heifer development hinges on achieving a desired weight before breeding…yet not over-developing heifers to the point they are not prepared to live on pasture and forage-based diets the remainder of their life. Most literature shows...

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heifer development

Selection of Replacement Heifers

As cattle producers wean calves, careful consideration in selecting replacement heifers is vital. Each cattleman will have different priorities depending on herd goals; however, these selection tips will help you incorporate proven selection strategies into your process. Selection While there may be different selection criteria priorities on your farm, consider removing these ch...

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Prussic Acid Poisoning could be an issue with Frosted Forages

Prussic acid poisoning is caused by hydrocyanic acid. As a cyanide compound the substance can quickly kill animals. Death can occur within minutes of ingestion in some cases. Cyanide interferes with the oxygen-carrying function in the blood resulting in asphyxiation. Symptoms include staggering, difficulty breathing, convulsions, and immobility. Sorghums and sorghum sudangrass crosses a...

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Finding more Grazing Days

The current cattle market can be distracting. Record high prices, while certainly a good thing, can leave many cattlemen in a state of awe and amazement. Instead of getting caught watching high prices this fall, your time will be better spent monitoring the cost side of your cattle business. Cow/calf producers can significantly reduce costs by extending the grazing season, delaying feed...

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corn silage

Corn Silage Considerations

Posted by Travis Meteer - Nutrition
Corn silage is a popular choice for winter feeding throughout the Midwest. The feed is very palatable, a good source of energy, and is highly digestible. Along with these attributes, its popularity is also based on high yield and tonnage per acre. Harvesting and storing corn silage for feed is dependent on anaerobic fermentation. The fermentation process converts soluble carbohydrat...

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