Scientific Farm Animal Production

Biology

Quiz 25 :

Feeding and Managing Beef Cattle

Quiz 25 :

Feeding and Managing Beef Cattle

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Compare various types of feed yards.
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The feed yard is also referred to as feedlot. It is an operation which aims to feed farm animals. The output of this operation is to produce beef cattle.
The main aim of a feed yard is to add to the pounds of meat in the cattle as fast as possible. Accordingly, if the animal movement is restricted it gains weight fast. The area allotted per cattle is just about 125-200 square feet in a feed yard. The animal spends its time in this much area for many months.
Basically, there are two types of cattle feeding operations that are carried out. The first one is the commercial feeder and the second one is the farm feeder operation.
img However, the contribution of farm feeders to the beef industry has declined considerably over the years. The beef industry today is mainly being run due to existence of commercial feed yards.

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Discuss the management calendar for a cow-calf enterprise.
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Firstly there are two seasons in which calves are born. The two seasons are known as fall calving season and spring calving season.
Fall calving season is the period from September to November. The young heifers give birth in early September while the mature cows deliver towards last week of November.
Spring calving season is the period from February to April. The young heifers calve in the beginning of February. The mature cows calve in March and April.
Each of the calving seasons has its own advantages and disadvantages. A cow calf producer has his hands full round the year. All activities relating to breeding and rising the herd have to be well planned to get good returns. The calendar of a cow calf producer is discussed below according to the calving seasons.
Firstly, there are certain activities which go on round the year for both spring as well as fall season calves. The following activities need to be attended all 12 months of the year.
January -December : Planning and assessing goals and record analysis, maintenance of equipment and looking after facilities for the cattle, updating cash inflow and outflow, providing salt and mineral nutrients, working out on management plan, continuously updating himself. All these activities are applicable for both spring and fall season calves.
April : Fertilizing pastures (grazing grounds) of cattle for both spring and fall season calves.
Jun, Jul and Aug : These are the months for getting the cattle vaccinated for Pink eye disease for both spring and fall season calves.
Jun : Fly control tags are put up in this month for calves of both seasons.
The schedule for remaining activities differs according to fall or spring season calves. These activities are as tabulated below:
img

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Compare and contrast performance of cow-calf producer profit categories.
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The cattle marketing can be profitable only if the cow-calf producer has been able to produce profitable calf. Just getting the best price for the cattle is not everything.
The cow-calf producer should focus on the following three aspects:
1) He should be able to produce a calf which has demand in the market.
2) Once produced the calf should be taken to the best outlet for marketing.
3) Marketing should be aimed for at the right time.
Marketing comprises of three important aspects such as what to produce, where to trade, and when to trade.
There are three main steps which a producer can follow for his profit categories:
1) He should identify all available options. Then consider each option in terms of cost of production and returns. And he should choose the most profitable option and not the easier option.
2) In order to ensure success in the market he should know the production cost per unit.
3) To be a good marketer, he should understand the system of marketing. He should know what criteria determine the price of the calf.
Apart from the above mentioned criteria the other factors which influence the value of the calf are breed, color, frame, muscling, weight, background, sex, vaccinations, BCS, reproductive performance etc.

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Describe various approaches to increasing weaning weight.
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Describe the BCS system and its usefulness to managers.
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Compare differences in cow-calf enterprises based on region.
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What are the factors affecting stocker enterprise profitability?
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Describe differences in the performance of enterprises that vary in their marketing strategy.
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What is the formula to calculate break-even price and how does each factor influence the outcome?
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Describe management of annual cow costs to increase profitability.
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List the three critical categories of cost in a cow-calf business.
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What are the seven critical management areas for a cow-calf producer?
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Describe various marketing alternatives used by feed yards.
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Describe best management practices to deal with manure.
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What are the four major environmental issues for feed yards?
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Discuss strategies to optimize calf crop percentage.
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