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Friday, November 9,2012

Beef Talk

Pregnancy evaluation is a key management tool

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
Next year’s planning is under way. Everything is upbeat, and the cows and bulls even get a blue ribbon. Eighty-four percent of the cows are projected to calve in the first 21 days of the calving season next spring. This means that the cows cycled and the bulls got them bred.

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Friday, October 19,2012

Beef Talk

To seek knowledge is good

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
We are halfway through the fall semester, so students are busy learning. The reality of skipping class or slacking off is starting to show up for some. For others, the self-fulfilling rewards of better understanding how the world works is becoming evident.

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Friday, October 12,2012

Beef Talk

Understanding culling and replacement rates critical

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
For more than 20 years of the CHAPS program, producers have encountered many challenges in the beef business. If the word “optimistic” is correct, the most optimistic year resulted in replacing cattle at more than 21 percent of the herd, while more conservative times are reflected in a low replacement rate of just less than 15 percent.

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Friday, October 5,2012

Beef Talk

The future of beef— Global competitiveness

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
However, here is something to keep in mind: If a typical beef producer marketed all the cattle last week that normally would be sold off the operation, approximately 50 percent of the check would be from the value of steer calves, 30 percent from the value of heifer calves, and 20 percent from the value of market cows and bulls.

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Friday, September 28,2012

Beef Talk

Wise marketing of cows and bulls is critical

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
As cows and bulls are rounded up for fall sorting, some are sorted for sale, so it is very important to remember that cull cows and bulls are market beef and should be treated as such. Market groups need to be sorted and appropriately presented to the market.

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Friday, September 14,2012

Beef Talk

Drought strategy: wean the calf, salvage the cow

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
The point is this: The weather is nice and the cows are thin, so we need to feed them. Do not put off what is inevitable. Thin cows must be fed, and fall is a good time because the cows’ nutritional requirements are low, especially if the cows are dry, and the requirements are easier to meet.

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Friday, September 7,2012

Beef Talk

Uff Da!

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
If one drives around much of the country, 2012 is a lot like 2008. The traditional summer hay is somewhat scarce in many areas and, in some areas, nonexistent. Maybe some solace can be found in the fact that we survived previous dry spells, so we also can survive this one.

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Friday, August 31,2012

Beef Talk

Calculating cost per unit is critical

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
Although it is true feed must be edible, free of digestive problems and compatible with the beef cow, that still leaves a large selection of alternative feedstuffs. Regardless what one is feeding, the first step is figuring cost per unit of desired nutrients.

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Friday, August 24,2012

Beef Talk

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
Let’s use corn, which is the No. 1 feed grain. We calculate the cost per unit of total digestible nutrients (TDN) and cost per unit of protein at various prices. To make the point, a quick scan on the Internet and a reputable feed table can be found to provide an approximate analysis for corn.

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Friday, August 3,2012

Beef Talk

Tough decisions, but cattle must pay for themselves

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
The weather continues to make life interesting. I am tempted to say the weather makes life difficult. If that were true, life always would be difficult because, as long as the earth spins and continues its rotation around the sun, the weather never will be uninteresting or constant.

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