Beef Cattle Production

A group of cattle

The 2023 Nebraska Beef Cattle Report is now available!

Translating and Applying Genomic EPDs

Expected progeny differences (EPDs) are a widely utilized tool in making genetic decisions centered around breeding objectives. With the progression of DNA technology, the industry has been able to incorporate genomics into the numbers that are used to calculate EPDs. Prior to inclusion of genomic information, we relied on pedigree-based relationships that operate on the averages. This assumes a 50% contribution from the dam and 50% contribution from the sire to the breeding value of the offspring.

Spring Annual Forages

With spring not far off, it is time to start planning and thinking about any spring annual forages that we might plant.  Part of the process may be anticipating a need for extra feed or booking seed early. 

Managing Hypothermia in Newborn Calves

Plans for calving season should include how to identify and manage cold stress in newborns. In the 2007 National Animal Health Monitoring System report, 25.6% of operations reported weather as the main cause for death in calves less than 3 weeks old.  Preventing hypothermia is vital to survival in the newborn.

Preparing for the Calving Season

1. Pay attention to nutrition needs of bred heifers or cows prior to calving.

Adequate body condition at the time of calving for young females and mature cows is important as it impacts stamina during delivery of the calf, colostrum quality, calf vigor, and also impacts subsequent rebreeding.