The Pulling of the Bulls

John F. Grimes, OSU Extension Beef Coordinator

Some of you are probably familiar with the phrase “The Running of the Bulls.”  This phrase has Spanish roots and has its origins from the need to transport cattle from fields in the country to the closest markets for sale.  Over the years, producers tried to speed the process by hurrying and exciting the cattle to market and it actually became a competition.

This process eventually moved to the bullfighting arena.  Bulls needed to be moved from fields outside the city to the local arena for bull fights.  During these runs, youngsters would run amongst the bulls to show their bravery.  These runs are still traditionally held in Spain, Portugal, Mexico and France with the most famous event held in Pamplona, Spain.

Today, modern beef producers are certainly encouraged to use husbandry practices that are safer for humans and animals alike.  However, I am Continue reading

Manure Science Review on Wednesday, August 2

Sarah Noggle and Glen Arnold, OSU Extension

The 2017 Ohio State University Manure Science Review is scheduled for Wednesday, August 2nd at the Stoller Brothers & Sons farm west of Paulding, Ohio. The review will begin at 8:45 a.m. at the home farm located at 9257 Rd. 144, Paulding. Coffee and donuts will be offered in the morning before the field day kicks off with the afternoon activities ending by 3:30 p.m.

The morning educational sessions in the farm shop will focus on effectively capturing Continue reading

Ag & Livestock Field Day Planned

– Chris Penrose, OSU Extension, Morgan County

Plans are set for the 17th Morgan County Ag and Livestock Field Day. I am pleased to announce that this year’s field day will be at Bill and Janice Massey’s on Popular Ridge Rd. at Tridelphia Rd., four miles west of Malta off SR 37 (watch for signs). The event will be on August 7th with the tour beginning at 6 p.m.

During the tour, we will see Continue reading

Feeding Steers on Corn Gluten or Distillers Grains? Learn to Recognize Urinary Calculi and How to Prevent Them

– Michelle Arnold, DVM (Ruminant Extension Veterinarian, UKVDL), Dr. Jeff Lehmkuhler, Beef Extension Specialist, University of Kentucky

“Urolithiasis” is the veterinary term used for the disease resulting from the formation of stone-like structures (“calculi”) inside the urinary tract of cattle, similar to kidney stones in humans. If a stone lodges in the urethra, it can partially or completely block the flow of urine and eventually lead to rupture of the bladder or urethra and ultimately death. Emergency surgical intervention may be performed or humane euthanasia recommended due to the extremely painful condition in affected animals. Stone formation is due to many factors but high phosphorus/ low calcium intake is perhaps the most important cause. Corn and corn-based coproducts such as dried distillers grains and corn gluten feed both have high concentrations of phosphorus and low calcium content. When feeding these feedstuffs without supplemental Continue reading

June Average Feeding Returns in the Southern Plains Back off Record High May

– Katelyn McCullock, Economist, American Farm Bureau Federation

Feeding returns for the Southern Plains have returned, and this year are showing the highest returns in over a decade (estimates by LMIC). Through the first 6 months of the year, average feeding returns have been $177 per head. May has been the highest month so far this year showing a profit of $260 per head, and June followed at $208 per head. This is in stark contrast to the last two years of negative returns, which were estimated as deep as $500 per head in late 2015.

These high returns have encouraged feedlots to Continue reading

Fescue Toxicosis-Knowing the Signs

Christine Gelley, Ohio State University Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Noble County (Originally published in the Summer, 2017 issue of the Ohio Cattleman magazine)

Tall fescue “Kentucky-31” (KY-31) is one of the most predominant forages in the nation. Its popularity began in the 1930s when a wild strain of fescue was discovered on a Kentucky farm and it became recognized for wide adaptability. In the1940s, the cultivated variety was publically released and can now be found in most pastures in the United States. This cultivar is easy to establish, persistent, tolerant of many environmental stresses, resistant to pests, and can aid livestock managers in prolonging the grazing season. However, tall fescue does not accomplish all of these tasks unassisted.

An endophytic fungus called Neotyphodium coenophialum can be credited for many of these benefits. The fungus cannot be seen and can only be detected by laboratory analysis. The fescue endophyte forms a mutually beneficial relationship with the grass, but this symbiotic relationship does not Continue reading

Making Observations Count

– Justin Sexten, Ph.D, Director, Supply Development, Certified Angus Beef

This time of year, you probably spend more time observing than working cattle. Calving is complete and bulls have been turned out with the spring herd. Fall calves are weaned and grass cattle are moving through pastures.

As the temperature rises, so does water intake for cattle. Their grazing activity moves to early morning and late evening, which presents the best opportunities to check the herd because “shaded up” cattle can be hard to find. We check cattle to watch for estrus and bull activity, monitor flies and look out for early symptoms of pinkeye or foot rot.

In my youth, a disproportionate amount of time in the summer was spent Continue reading

Controlling Pasture Flies on Cattle

Rory Lewandowski, OSU Extension Educator, Wayne County

Horn flies and face flies are the two most common flies that bother cattle in pasture settings.  From an economic standpoint, horn flies cause the most damage.  Research indicates that a good horn fly control program can result in 12 to 20 pounds of additional weight gain for calves as well as reduced weight loss for nursing cows.  The economic threshold for horn flies is generally considered as equal to or more than 100 flies/side or 200 per animal.  Face flies do not cause the same type of economic damage and no economic threshold number is available, but they can Continue reading

Clipping Just for Aesthetics is Hard to Justify

– Victor Shelton, NRCS State Agronomist/Grazing Specialist

July 4th usually reminds me that half of the growing season is pretty much gone. After panicking for a moment or two, it is best to just come to the conclusion that everything is done that needs to be done, and if not, perhaps it just wasn’t that important. I long for those July 4th holidays in the past that were huge family get-to-gathers, those out-of-the back of the vehicles while putting nitrogen on knee high corn in the river bottoms or the leisurely porch gatherings eating watermelon and blackberry pie. I’m not sure why all of a sudden everyone seems so busy, and there is just never enough time.

By now, most have made the decision on whether to clip pastures or not. Like I said before, clipping just for aesthetics is Continue reading

Keeping Cows Pregnant Through the Summer

– Dr. Justin Rhinehart, Assistant Professor, UT Beef Cattle Extension Specialist

In previous articles, we’ve talked about how to concentrate your breeding season and how much value that adds to your calf crop each year. But, getting cows bred is only part of the story. Keeping them bred, especially through the summer months, also takes attention to detail.

In normal situations where the bull is fertile and covers cows at the right time, fertilization rates approach 100%. So, if a normally expected single-service conception rate is 60-80%, the difference comes from embryonic or fetal loss. Most of this loss occurs in the first few days of development and those cows or heifers come back in heat and Continue reading