This year it feels like we went straight from winter to summer due to the cool wet spring. We are seeing the first hot weather of the summer, so here are a few reminders to help minimize stress to cattle during hot weather.
Provide plenty of clean water, including making sure that the tanks and fountains are clean and the valves all work to be able to keep up with increased demand. When the temperature is above 80 degrees, cattle may consume 20 gallons of water for each 1000 pounds of body weight.
Providing or access to shade if possible and make sure cattle are not in areas with restricted air flow.
If you have to haul cattle or work them, do so early in the day during the cool parts of the day.
Following are some additional resources to help cattle producers manage heat stress on cattle:
University of Nebraska Heat Stress Resources
Use Extra Care When Hauling Cattle in Hot Weather
Good Management Can Help Beat the Summer Heat
Heat Stress in Beef Cattle Iowa State Publication (pdf)
USDA Heat Stress Forecast Maps