BeefWatch Archive

Beefwatch Archive

To read articles prior to September 2017, please visit the article archive on UNL Announce.

Limitations of Remote Drug Delivery Devices for Cattle Health Management

This is the final session of a four-part webinar series on calf health management on arrival. Dr. Brian Vander Ley discusses the limitations of remote drug delivery devices (dart guns) for cattle health management.

Calf Health Management on Arrival – Producer Perspective

This video is part of the Calf Health Management on Arrival webinar series. John Schroeder, manager of Darr Feedlot near Cozad, NE, highlights some of their receiving protocols and feeding programs for calves on arrival.

Role of Nutrition in Health Maintenance of Calves

This is the third session of a four-part webinar series on calf health management on arrival. Dr. Clint Krehbiel discusses the role of nutrition in health maintenance of calves.

Arrival Health Programs for High-Risk Calves

This is the second session of a four-part webinar series on calf health management on arrival. Dr. Dan Thomson discusses arrival health programs for high-risk calves. Dr. Thomson shares some handling procedures that reduce arrival stress and promote health.

Systems Approach to Maintaining Health in High-Risk Calves

This is the first session of a four-part webinar series on calf health management on arrival. Dr. John Groves shares a systems approach to maintaining health in high-risk calves. Dr. Groves provides a virtual demonstration of how he works with clients on penning cattle to minimize health risk.

Windrow Grazing Annual Forages to Extend the Grazing Season

In many areas of Nebraska, drought conditions have resulted in reduced forage production on rangeland and pasture.  This is resulting in a shortage of feed for many producers and a need for forage between now and when cornstalks are available for grazing.  Windrow grazing annual forages allows producers to cut the crop at an optimum time for quality and increase harvest efficiency through strip grazing the windrows.   

Limit Feeding Cows Corn as an Alternative to Hay

Feed costs make up the largest expense in a cow-calf operation. While hay is often used to feed cows through the winter, current prices make corn a competitive option to feeding hay. Considering corn has a higher energy content than hay, the cost of feeding hay is often higher than corn on a price per pound of energy basis. For example, corn priced at $3.30/bushel ($118/ton) equates to approximately $0.08 per pound of total digestible nutrients (TDN) while hay priced at $100/ton is nearly $0.11 per pound of TDN. 

Forage Testing Can Save Dollars

As cow-calf producers strive to reduce feed costs by finding different avenues to increase grazing days, many still have to use harvested forages in their year-round feeding program.  Sampling and testing forages for quality can make designing a feeding program easy and economical.  Nutrient concentration can vary considerably in feeds especially forages.  Protein in alfalfa hay can range from 10-25% on a dry matter basis and grass hay will contain between four and 18 percent protein.  Using book values to balance rations can result in many times over or under feeding ce

Keeping an Eye on Body Condition in Fall Calving Cows

With much of the eastern and western borders of Nebraska in a drought, producers with fall calving cows need to be especially mindful of body condition on fall calving cows. In Nebraska, most fall calving herds actually start calving sometime in August. This allows producers to take advantage of late summer grass as a forage resource with ample protein and energy for the newly lactating cow. However, the hot dry conditions this year have left many pastures not only short on dry matter tonnage, but also short on the nutrient density required to maintain the lactating cow.

Keep it Tight; Store Hay Right

Setting the Stage 

Even before storing, producers can give hay a better chance to make it from the field to the cow with as little loss as possible. Baling at correct moisture levels will lead to proper curing without additional heat, mold growth, and dry matter loss. Bales should maintain moisture levels below 20% for this to happen. 

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