Feedlot Focus

Starting cattle – a critical step

By: James I. Sprague Feedlot operators work hard at giving new cattle a chance to get rested and acclimated to the mysterious surroundings of the new pen and pens mates. Part of this process includes offering a starting ration that must not only be nutritious, but safe from digestive upsets such as acidosis. This “first…

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Feedlot environmental management

By: Lauren Caggiano More stringent and enforced government regulations call for keen oversight in following best practices for environment management, especially in the case of open feedlots. Open feedlots have the potential to degrade nearby water resources if not managed properly. Consequently, operators should follow guidelines used to minimize the feedlot impacts on soil, water,…

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Four ways to marry implants and carcass quality goals

By: Miranda Reiman 1. Delay implanting until full feed “It’s almost become standard operating procedure around here,” says Robbi Pritchard, of South Dakota State University (SDSU). His team divided 650-pound steers into non-implanted, estradiol-trenbolone acetate (TBA) implant at the start or TBA implant at 850 lb. Implanting increased hot carcass weight under both strategies, but…

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Whats the future of farmer feeders

By: James I. Sprague Farmer cattle feeders have been a long time source of high quality finished cattle. The proportion of cattle fed by this segment of the beef industry has steadily declined compared to the number fed by medium and large commercial feedyards.The ethanol industry has somewhat slowed this trend by supplying the high…

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Feeder cattle supplies continue to dwindle

By: Derrell S. Peel The latest USDA Cattle on Feed report confirmed that feedlots continue to build feedlot inventories. The February 1 on-feed total was 11.514 million head, 106 percent of year earlier levels. However, it should be noted that this is compared to a small February number last year. In fact, the current February…

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