Estimating forage usage by cows is an important part of the task of calculating winter feed needs. Hay or standing forage intake must be estimated in order to make the calculations. Forage quality will be a determining factor in the amount of forage consumed. Higher quality forages contain larger concentrations of important nutrients so animals consuming these forages should be more likely to meet their nutrient needs from the forages. Also cows can consume a larger quantity of higher quality forages. Continue reading →
By-products such as distillers grains, gluten or soyhulls can serve as lower cost feed alternatives.
The last two years made it challenging for many producers to find good quality, let alone a good quantity of, feed for livestock. Spoilage and high costs for subpar hay and grain can be discouraging. Health issues associated with poor quality feed may range from starvation-like symptoms due to lacking nutritional value of feed to death from contamination. Producers may want to consider supplementing other types of feeds into winter rations to make up for the loss in nutritional value of traditional feeds and to help off-set costs. Continue reading →
This question has been commonplace this year, especially with the inability of many producers to make hay at a reasonable time. However, this isn’t to say that there isn’t hay to be purchased, because there is, but rather that hay of acceptable quality at a reasonable price is nearly non-existent.
With this in mind, we challenge you to think about how generations before us fed low quality hay. It was simple right? Feed more of the lower quality material and allow the animals to choose which parts of the bale are the best. Then once they have eaten what they want, pitch the rest of it on the ground for bedding. This may be true, but what happens when we aren’t feeding enough of the ‘good stuff’? Continue reading →
By: Al Gahler, OSU Extension Educator, Sandusky County. Originally published in Ohio Beef Letter
Dr. Francis Fluharty returns to Ohio in January to teach during the first sessions of the Ohio Beef Cattle Nutrition and Management School.
Mark your calendars now for the Ohio Beef Cattle Nutrition and Management School, to be held in 2 locations, with 2 sessions at each locale. Session 1 will focus on utilizing small grains in the diets of all ages and production groups of beef cattle, utilizing alternative forages, and managing your herd or feedlot with lower quality feedstuffs. This discussion will be led by our former OSU research nutritionist and current University of Georgia Department of Animal Sciences Chair, Dr. Francis Fluharty. Session 1 will take place from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. in Sandusky County (location to be determined) on January 29th, and 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. at the OSU Newark Campus in Licking County on January 30th. Continue reading →
Source: American Lamb Board
(Previously published in the ASI Weekly Newsletter – September 6, 2019)
Outcomes from the inaugural American Lamb Summit were clear: all segments of the industry need to further improve lamb quality to keep and attract new customers and become more efficient to recapture market share from imported lamb. Yet, it was just as clear that production technologies and product research put industry success within grasp. Continue reading →
A properly managed bunk impacts profitability of the feedyard!
Feedbunk management plays an important role in both animal performance and preventing acidosis in the feedyard.
A part of feedbunk management is estimating how much feed cattle will eat. Factors such as cattle size, weight, breed, ration-type, weather and health must be taken into account. Previous history of feed intake for a pen of cattle can help in estimations.
How much work do you want to put into gaining an estimate of how your steer or a group of cattle are eating? Estimates can be made prior to a morning feeding, if you are providing a morning feeding, with two additional observations made during the day. Continue reading →
Small ruminant production continues to grow across the nation as the market for this industry remains strong. Small ruminants, including sheep and goats, are two livestock species that are most easily adapted to any type of production system. Regardless if you are someone that is interested in just getting into the industry or a seasoned veteran, I encourage you to attend the latest small ruminant production workshop.
Sponsored by the OSU Sheep Team, The Ohio State University Extension, Wilmington College, and Ohio Sheep and Wool Program, I’d like to invite you to the Small Ruminant Production Workshop – Addressing Needs for a Successful Production Season. This workshop will be held on Friday, October 4, 2019 from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm at the Wilmington College Academic Farm in Wilmington, Ohio. Over the course of the day, attendees will hear from Extension specialist and Animal Science faculty and staff members covering an array of topics including flock and herd management, facilities and handling, nutrition and health, forages and marketing, as well as carcass quality and fabrication. Continue reading →
By: Garth Ruff, Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Ohio State University Extension, Henry County
As summer slips past us yet again and with fall rapidly approaching it is time to discuss how to maximize the value of feeder calves that will be hitting the market in late September and October. If you have been following the cattle futures both fed cattle and feeders have been on a roller coaster here as of late. With that in mind there are some things we can do management wise to capitalize on this year’s calf crop. Continue reading →
By: Chris Hurt, Department of Agricultural Economics Purdue University, farmdoc daily (9):158
Diversified grain and livestock farms were once the model of U.S. agriculture. Farms often had crop and animal enterprises to help capture their complementary nature such as spreading the use of family labor throughout the year and recycling animal waste as nutrients to the crop enterprise.
Today, farms are much more specialized in crops or animals, and many fewer are in both. Has this changed the relative economic importance of crop and animal agriculture in the U.S.? Continue reading →
Now after a years’ time, with nearly 100 in-person trainings taught, and almost 7,250 Ohio cattle producers BQA certified in-person and another 2,100 online, where do things stand?
As a refresher, the push to have producers trained in BQA was at the request of Tyson, one of the major packers’ decision to only source fed cattle from cattle feeders certified in BQA by 2019. Tyson’s decision was largely due to the commitment of Wendy’s to do the same, at the demand of their customers. As we have seen in all segments of food production the consumer, now more than ever, wants to know how their food is produced. Often in the case of meat, consumers want to be assured that the animal was raised humanely and cared for under good production practices, the basic principles of any livestock quality assurance program. Continue reading →