UGA ADSC 2010 - The Beef Industry: Cow / Calf Management
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ADSC 2010 Lecture 33Outline of Last Lecture I. The Four Segments of Beef ProductionII. Purebred / Seedstock ProductionIII. Commercial ProducersIV. Stocker / BackgroundersV. Feedlot / Finishing PhaseVI. Beef Production: Four SegmentsVII. Outline of Beef IndustryVIII. More DetailOutline of Current Lecture I. Beef ProductionA. Cow / CalfII. ManagementA. Management Factors Affecting % Calf Crop WeanedB. Management Factors Affecting Weaning WeightC. Management Factors Affecting Annual Cow CostCurrent Lecture: I. Beef ProductionA. Cow / Calf- Profitability determined by three major criteria:1. % Calf Crop Weaned: # of calves weaned / # cows in herd2. Weaning Weight of Calf: 205D of age3. Annual Cow Cost: $ to maintain cow in herd each year Economic assessment / breakeven price- Ex: 85% calf crop : 500# WW : $600 annual cow cost Breakeven price ($ / #): annual cow cost / # of calf weaned per cow # of calf weaned per cow = % calf crop x weaning weight- .85 x 500 = 425 # of calf weaned per cow- $600 / 425# = $1.41 / # of calf  Breakeven priceII. ManagementIncome expenseA. Management Factors Affecting % Calf Crop Weaneda. Heifers should reach puberty at 15 months to calve at 24 monthso ROT: heifers should be 65% mature weight to breedo English breed should be 650-700#o Exotic breed should be 800-900#b. Breed heifers early in breeding season to allow longer “postpartum interval” before rebreedingc. Heifers should be separated from cow herd 30-60D prior to calving and post calving to allow better management o Heifers have longer postpartum interval than cowsd. Females need moderate body condition (fat) at calvingo Thin cows have longer postpartum intervalo Fat cows are not economicale. Observation and assistance with calvingo Minimize “dystocia” or see increased postpartum intervalf. Select bulls to minimize “dystocia” or calving difficultyo Utilize birth weight EPDso Have to balance BW with WW (correlated)o Heifers should be bred to low BBBWWW bullsg. Use adequate number of bills and select bulls that are physically sound and reproductively soundo High libidoo Good semen quality/quantity: scrotal circumference >30cmo Correct bull to cow ratio= 1:30 avg.h. Utilization of crossbreeding:o Heritability of fetility is low (<.20 or 20%)o Can increase % calf crop by 8-12%o Crossbred females- Cycle earlier- Higher conception rateso Crossbred calves- Improved vigor- Higher survival ratesi. Improve nutrition and available energyo Decrease age at pubertyo Gets cow into proper body conditiono Reduces postpartum intervalj. Minimize reproductive diseases (2-3% fetal death loss)o Brucellosiso Vibrosis *o Leptospirosis *o Infectious Bovine Rhinotracheitis * *Annual Vaccines to Prevent Thesek. Minimize calf death loss (1-2% death loss)o Severe weathero Scourso Calving difficultyo Pneumonia B. Management Factors Affecting Weaning Weight- Determined by genetic potential for:1. Growth in calf2. Milk production in the cowa. Calves born in calving season are older and heavierb. Need good quality forageo Increase in milk productiono Some effect on calf growthc. Growth stimulants can increase growth by 5-10%o Ralgro, Synovex, compudose (10:1 or greater return) d. Creep feeding calves increases WWo Supplemental feed for calf only o Depends on economye. Herd Health Managemento Minimizes diseases that affect calf growth and milk productionf. Select bulls with high WW EPDso Heritability of WW = .30o Bull accounts for 80-90% of genetic process of the breedg. Heterosis in crossbred cow / calfo Increase milk production in cowo Increase pre-weaning gain in calfC. Management Factors Affecting Annual Cow Costa. Feed costs (60-75% of annual cow cost)o Utilize lower quality forage from weaning to last trimester of gestationb. Labor accounts for 10-15% of annual costc. Interest charges on operating capital

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UGA ADSC 2010 - The Beef Industry: Cow / Calf Management

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