Improving Reproduction Management, Part 2

John Grimes, OSU Extension Educator, Highland County

Last week in the Ohio BEEF Cattle newsletter, we addressed improving reproductive management by discussing the impact of the timing of calving seasons on Ohio’s cow-calf producers. Once a producer has determined what time of year is the best calving season for them, it is imperative that they get as many cows bred as possible in the shortest amount of time.

The United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service recently released the results of a very important study of the nation’s cow-calf producers. This study, the National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS), is designed to collect data on cattle health and management practices on cow-calf operations from across the country. The 2007-08 NAHMS Beef study was conducted in 24 states gathering information from operations representing 79.6% of the U.S. cow-calf operations and 87.8 % of the beef cows. Results from the 2007-08 NAHMS Beef study give us insight about producer’s attitudes and management practices relating to reproduction.

A defined breeding season is a sound management practice that allows Continue reading

Improving Reproduction Management, Part 1

John Grimes, OSU Extension Educator, Highland County

If you want to start a lively discussion with a group of cattle breeders, ask one of the following two questions: (1.) “What production traits are important to you?” and (2.) “What time of year do you prefer to calve?” We do not have adequate time or space in this article to address the merits of various production traits. However, I would like to make a case for reproduction rates being the most important trait for any cattle breeder to focus upon. Emphasis on any given production trait will be meaningless unless the female conceives and has a live calf every 12 months. Timing and length of the calving season will have a huge impact on eventual reproduction rates.

Results from the Ohio Beef Continue reading