Sharpen your beef cattle management skills

Sharpen your beef cattle management skills

Two beef production management workshops are set for March 10-11 in north-central Iowa.

Beef producers who want to hone their management practices are invited to attend one of two workshops set for early March in north-central Iowa. Iowa State University Extension program specialist Russ Euken says these “Sharpening Your Beef Cattle Management Skills” events will focus on cow-calf and feedlot management topics.

“The first workshop will be held Thursday, March 10, just south of Iowa Falls at the Ellsworth College Ag and Renewable Energy Center, and the second on Friday, March 11, at the Humboldt County Extension office in Humboldt,” Euken said. “Both events will run from 9:45 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and are free to those who preregister.”

REGISTER NOW: Iowa beef producers can hone their management practices by attending one of two workshops in early March. Held at two locations, the meetings will focus on cow-calf and feedlot management topics.

Iowa State faculty and staff will speak at both workshops:
•Livestock economist Dr. Lee Schulz will present, “Beef Market Outlook, Opportunities and Risk Management”

•ISU Extension beef program specialist Joe Sellers will present, “Fine Tuning Grazing Management and Forage Opportunities”

•Iowa Beef Center program specialist Erika Lundy will present, “Managing Higher Starch Feedlot Diets”

•Lundy and Euken will present, “Utilizing Changing Distillers Grains in Cow-Calf and Feedlot Diets”

•Euken will wrap up the day’s program with “Veterinary Feed Directive and Antibiotic Use.”

See a flier for the Iowa Falls site by clicking here and see the Humboldt location flier here. Preregistration for the workshop and free noon meal is required. Those wishing to attend the March 10 Iowa Falls location must preregister by Friday, March 4, by contacting the Hardin County Extension and Outreach office by phone at 641-648-4850 or toll-free 888-648-5005, or email [email protected]. To attend the March 11 Humboldt location, you must preregister by Tuesday, March 8, by contacting Humboldt County Extension and Outreach office by phone at 515-332-2201 or email county program coordinator Holly Frerk at [email protected].

Grassroots Grazing program for young and beginning graziers
In other news from the Iowa Beef Center this week, the Grassroots Grazing program for young and beginning graziers continues to expand this year with another location. ISU Extension beef program specialist Joe Sellers says the new series begins March 22 at the McNay Research Farm near Chariton.

“This grazing management series is designed for young and beginning graziers, although anyone interested in basic grazing management is welcome to attend,” he says. “Grassroots Grazing is a three-part series with this first session running from 6 to 8:30 p.m. It includes a free dinner.”

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Practical information on grazing you’ll take home and use
All participants will receive a resource manual for use throughout the course and at their farms. The first session includes discussion on controlling feed costs, goal setting for individual grazing systems, and comparing various grazing programs. The second and third sessions will include pasture walks and additional meetings on dates determined by the participants. “There is no fee to attend, but we strongly encourage preregistration to plan for the meal and ensure adequate materials for everyone,” Sellers said.  “Please register by March 21.”

The date, time, address and contact information for the initial session is listed below, along with a link to the specific session flier. McNay Research Farm, 45249 170th Avenue, Chariton, March 22, 6 to 8:30 p.m. See the session flier at iowabeefcenter.org/news/GrassrootsGrazingMcNay2016.html.

New ISU software will help sheep feedlot managers
New software that will help sheep feedlot managers keep better track of their operations is now available from the Iowa Beef Center. Assistant scientist Garland Dahlke developed the software for sheep managers using the popular beef feedlot monitor software as a model. The program provides detailed monitoring of both animal performance and business transactions that are part of the sheep feeding enterprise.

“This new software will provide sheep feedlot managers the same information cattle feedlots have to monitor their operation and stay efficient throughout the year,” Dahlke says. The software can use Excel as well to download or analyze data, and directions are provided in the free documentation. You can download the documentation file and purchase the software from the Iowa State University Extension online store.

The animal performance evaluation portion of the software is based on real time feed consumption and financial information that can be tied to health data. This creates a basis for the estimation of current growth and subsequent performance. The business component includes a daily accounting of costs and income, and provides the option to track feed and drug inventory. The user can then generate closeout statements for groups in the operation, as well as billing statements for custom feeding operations.

For more information click on sheep feedlot program provides detailed monitoring of both animal performance and business transactions.

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