Think strategically about replacement heifer options

It’s no secret that raising replacement females can be a major expense for beef cow-calf producers. Average age to breaking even for recouping heifer development costs varies greatly, with the most efficient producers averaging 5 years of age and less efficient, 7 years or even greater. With that in mind, selecting the right number and […]

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Updated version of feedlot enterprise budget now available

A new version of the feedlot enterprise budget has been added to the WBIC website. The new version cleans up some formatting and fixes a few formula bugs that were discovered in the feed costs section for adjusting for moisture. It can be downloaded at the Decision Tools and Software page.

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New fact sheets address best time to calve and successful calving season management

Information addressing considerations for the best time to calve beef cattle in Wisconsin and management decisions involved with changing one calving season to another was recently presented by Dr. Sandy Stuttgen, DVM, Taylor County UW Extension, at the Wisconsin Cattlemen’s Winter Conference. For this session she authored two summary publications. When is the Best Time […]

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Weathering the Storm During Calving

The new year may have entered like a lamb, but February rolled in like a lion. For those that calve in January and February, the rapid changes in temperature may have played a role in calf sickness and growth. Maintaining a healthy calf is crucial to growth and a good immune system. As the temperature […]

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Winter brings challenging conditions for managing herd health, nutrition

January and February bring some of the coldest days of the year, and March can bring some of the snowiest. Cattle experience cold stress at different temperatures depending on conditions and coat length. The lower critical temperature (LCT) is an animal’s ability to withstand cold conditions. According to Penn State University Extension, the LCT is […]

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Managing Cattle Through Winter Weather Conditions

Winter weather conditions often present challenges to cattle managers in the Northern Plains (and upper Midwest). Although we can’t alter the weather, there are management steps that can be taken to help maintain cattle health and performance. Bedding Providing bedding is the most useful tool to improve cattle comfort, especially in outside yards. Bedding helps […]

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Beef Cow Winter Feeding Strategies

Winter is in full swing with the white ground and freezing temperatures as I look out towards the cattle barn from my warm living room. During this time it is important to consider your winter beef cow ration fed to your dry cows so they are in top body condition and health at calving time. […]

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Tips to Reduce Winter-Feeding Hay Costs for Beef Herd

With hay being in short supply in some areas I thought it might be beneficial to re-post this article that Dr. Radunz and I put together back in 2011. Winter-feeding of the beef cows represents the greatest expense in most beef cow-calf enterprises.  Currently high feed prices, even for hay, should cause farmers to evaluate […]

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BQA certification workshops update

Some large packers and processors have announced that effective January 1, 2019, they will only purchase from farms that are BQA or FARM Certified. Most dairy farms are FARM certified through their milk processor. Ask your dairy plant representative for help to get a copy of your completed FARM evaluation, or a letter from them […]

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