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The Cattle Connection

The cattlemen's connection to timely topics, current research, and profitable management strategies
cows in the backseat

Management in a Drought: Part 5

Sometimes it is hard getting those old cows to town... go ahead the picture is supposed to make you smile. Culling cows is a part of every cattle operation and in most herds culling occurs every year. Sometimes we hate to part with cows, but in a drought situation culling cows can asure we still have adequate feed resources for the younger, more productive cows. It just...

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cows eating a mixture of DGS and hay

Management in a Drought: Part 4

One thing that distinguishes a successful producer from his peers is the ability to adapt and respond to changes. Changes in weather and forage availability are many times out of our hands, but how we react to those changes can be the difference in profit or loss. Supplementing cows with alternative feedstuffs during a drought is a common practice. Harvested forages, su...

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Angus cow calf

Management in a Drought: Part 3

Early weaning (EW) is a management strategy that can alleviate grazing pressure on pastures. EW can be the necessary decision to keep from feeding cows all summer or having to liquidate cows due to lack of forage. Maddox (1965) suggested that by the time a calf reaches 120 days of age, more than half of the calf's energy requirement comes from sources other than milk. T...

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creep feeding2

Management in a Drought: Part 2

Creep feeding is a management strategy that provides supplemental nutrition to calves still nursing momma cows. Sources of creep feed usually include grains, co-products, commercial supplements, or if available high quality forages. Creep Feeding is a practice that has been used to increase weaning weights. In today's market where pounds are worth quite a bit (500lb. ca...

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Management in a Drought: Part 1

Posted by Travis Meteer - Drought

We were thankful yesterday to see rain clouds here at the Orr Research Center, but we would have certainly welcomed them to stay a lot longer. Much of Illinois has experienced some level of drought stress this spring. The lack of moisture has definitely had a negative effect on pastures. We are accustom to heavier stocking rates and more plentiful forages in the spring in the Corn Belt....

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Don't be blinded by Pinkeye

Pinkeye has been popping up in herds the last few weeks. Pinkeye is caused by the bacterium Moraxella bovis which is also found in the eyes of healthy cattle. Eye irritation is a key factor in developing pinkeye. Tall/mature grasses, sunlight, dust, and flies all create eye irritation. This year we've had all of those irritants present in cattle herds. In many cases we've had more dust...

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