Early Weaning as a Winter Management Tool

John F. Grimes, Ohio State University Extension Beef Coordinator & Dr. Francis L. Fluharty, Research Associate Professor, Ohio State University Dept. of Animal Sciences

The vast majority of Ohio’s calves from commercial cow-calf production are born during the first four months of the calendar year. While exact numbers are not available, the authors estimate through various surveys and post-meeting evaluations that roughly 20% of Ohio’s beef calf crop are born in the last four months of the year. There are many reasons that a producer chooses a calving season but we would speculate that tradition and convenience would be at the top of most lists.

There is no “magical” date that is best to wean calves. Traditional dates to wean for most producers fall around Continue reading

Are Your Cows Slowly Starving on a Full Belly?

Stan Smith, PA, Fairfield County, OSU Extension

“My cows are eating all they want, and they are full . . . why does it appear they might be losing weight?” Seems like a dumb question doesn’t it? Over the years I’ve heard it many times . . . “look at those cows . . . their bellies are full . . . and to think you told me they wouldn’t do any good on (you fill in the blank here) my first cutting hay or corn stalks or soybean stubble or tree twigs or . . . ” You name it, I think I’ve heard it.

It seems sometimes we struggle with identifying the difference between what a cow will eat, and whether she can actually Continue reading