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Follow practical information for the beef producer on essential topics including management, reproduction and calving, new technology, facilities improvement, beef quality, and feed and nutrition.

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Pregnancies matter. Reproductive efficiency is a priority in beef herds. If producers depend on natural service, then bulls contribute to at least half of reproduction and at least as much to the future of the cow herd through his daughters.

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“A cow should have a calf every year.” For most cow-calf producers this is a true statement because the cow costs the same amount of money to keep – whether or not it raises and weans a calf to sell.

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Having a majority of cows in a cow-calf operation calve in the first 30 days of the calving season is critical to profitability for ranchers. A major opportunity for enhancing profitability is in moving late-calving cows forward to calve earlier in the calving season.

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Reading a bull sale catalog this winter, I came across this statement attributed to Bart Carmichael, “You can’t always do what Grandpa did, but don’t forget what Grandpa knew.”

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Reasons for bull calf castration stretch beyond reducing sexual activity and reproduction. Bulls are naturally aggressive and as such, castration becomes necessary for the welfare of the herd and the protection of those who work with them.

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The adage “out of sight, out of mind” may avoid a few of life’s problems, but internal parasites are not one of them. It’s common knowledge there are countless microscopic predators lurking in the cattle environment.

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