Iowa State University Extension and Outreach and the Iowa Beef Center are preparing for the ISU Feedlot School to be held this summer at the Armstrong Research Farm near Lewis in southwest Iowa. Extension beef program specialist Chris Clark says this educational series will provide information about numerous aspects of feedlot management including recordkeeping, risk management, animal health, nutrition, environmental stewardship and animal handling.
"I have tried to plan a pretty comprehensive program that includes several important topics for feedlot producers," Clark said. "The curriculum should be educational for anyone involved in the day-to-day management of a feedlot. I have also tried to include a few opportunities for practice, demonstration and interaction."
The program will feature several speakers from Iowa State including Lee Schulz, ISU livestock economist; Shane Ellis, farm management program specialist; Dan Loy, IBC director; and Jan Shearer, Iowa State professor of veterinary diagnostic and production animal medicine.
Six session program offers timely topics, expert sources of information
Other highlights include a low-stress cattle handling demonstration by Kip Lukasiewicz from Production Animal Consultation, BQA presentation and certification with Doug Bear from the Iowa Beef Industry Council, and a field trip to Ames to visit several sites including the ISU College of Veterinary Medicine, the Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, and the ISU animal science department.
The series will meet six times, twice in June and then once monthly July through October. The series kicks off on Thursday, June 12 at the Wallace Foundation Learning Center at the ISU Armstrong Research Farm near Lewis, with a presentation on recordkeeping with the updated version of IBC's Feedlot Monitoring Program.
"We plan to have computers for participants to use so they can actually practice with the program and get a feel for setting things up and inputting data," Clark says. "Garland Dahlke from the IBC will then help us input a group of research cattle that we will be feeding here at the farm. We should then be able to track them through the entire feeding period."
Risk management strategies, animal health, DNR work plan and more
The agenda for the first session also features a presentation on risk management strategies by Schulz. "Given recent market volatility, narrow profit margin of the feedlot industry, and the high input costs; risk management might be more important than ever," Clark said. "Lee will do a nice job of explaining the different risk management tools that are available to producers."
Future session topics include animal health management, starting cattle on feed, environmental stewardship including an update on the EPA/DNR work plan, animal handling, and feedlot audits.
The registration fee is $150 per person for the entire series. For more information or to register, contact Chris Clark by email at email@example.com or Leann Plowman-Tibken by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 712-769-2600.