BeefWatch Archive

Beefwatch Archive

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

Effects of a Freeze on Forages

If you haven’t experienced a freeze yet this fall, you soon will. And remember, a freeze can cause hazards for using some forages. When plants freeze, changes occur in their metabolism and composition that can poison livestock. But you can prevent problems. Sorghum-related plants, like cane, sudangrass, shattercane, and milo can be highly toxic for a few days after frost. Freezing breaks plant cell membranes. This breakage allows the chemicals that form prussic acid, which is also called cyanide, to mix together and release this poisonous compound rapidly.

Feeding Low-Quality Hay

This year, wet weather has many producers putting up hay much later in the season than normal.  A late harvest date means grasses have already produced seed heads and are rapidly declining in forage nutrient value. While having even low quality hay on hand for winter feed is better than none, producers will need to consider the challenges of meeting cattle nutrient requirements this winter.

Oat-Brassica Forage Quality Changes during Winter Grazing

This article is a summary of the 2018 Nebraska Beef Cattle Report “Late Summer Planted Oat-Brassica Forage Quality Changes during Winter Grazing.”  Mary E. Lenz, Jordan L. Cox, Kristen E. Hales, Hannah C. Wilson, and Mary E. Drewnoski were collaborators on this research study and report.  The report is summarized by Aaron Berger, Nebraska Extension Beef Educator.

State of Beef Conference to be Held in North Platte November 7-8

The State of Beef Conference will be held November 7-8, 2018 at the Sandhills Convention Center in North Platte.  The theme this year is “Increasing Production Efficiency”.  There will be two producer panel discussions this year. One is on production efficiency and one is on alternative profit centers for the ranch.  There will be a presentation on the market outlook as well as genetics, reproduction, and nutrition. This will also be an opportunity to visit with industry personnel about products available for the ranching operation.

Making Silage from Late Season Hail Damaged Corn

The first step in dealing with hail damage is to contact your insurance agent, so that you know what is required to meet obligations for hail or revenue insurance.

Preconditioned vs Weaned Calves can Affect Bunk Space Requirements in Feedlots

Weaning season is right around the corner for producers. However, some producers do not think about how their management techniques can affect calves when entering the feedlot. These techniques can affect how calves are managed when received at the feedlot and subsequently, can determine the number of head in a pen during receiving. This article will review the difference in bunk space requirements between calves that are weaned and shipped immediately to a different location compared to calves that are preconditioned before entering the feedlot.

Timing Manure Application to Avoid Neighbor Nuisances

Roughly half of all neighbor complaints of livestock odors originate from land application of manure. A weather forecast and a little knowledge of odor dilution can be a powerful tool for keeping your neighbors happy, or at least avoiding those irate phone calls. This article summarizes those weather conditions that should be considered when planning manure application.

Windrow Grazing: An Alternative to Feeding Hay in the Fall and Winter

Advantages to Windrow Grazing

Harvested feed costs can be one of the largest expenses to cattle producers. Windrow grazing, sometimes called swath grazing, is a management practice that can significantly reduce harvesting and feeding costs. Swathing the crop and leaving the windrows in the field provides several advantages.

• Eliminates the costs of baling and hauling bales off the field.
• Reduces labor and equipment costs associated with feeding.

Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) Focus on Transportation

Transportation plays an important role in cattle production. The majority of cattle in the United States have been transported with a stock trailer or semi cattle truck at least once in their life time.

Data on transportation was collected in the 2016 National Beef Quality Audits for both fed cattle and market cows/bulls being moved to harvest facilities.

2018 Nebraska Cow-Calf Pair and Stocker Rental Rates

Recent findings published from the Nebraska Farm Real Estate Market Highlights 2017-2018 indicate changes in cow-calf and stocker monthly rental rates were mixed when compared to 2017 (Table 1). Nebraska monthly grazing rates represent a typical fee for one month of grazing during the summer. Many leases run for a five-month grazing season subject to annual weather conditions.

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