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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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Friday, July 27,2012

Beef Talk

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
In the short term, heat impacts cattle performance because cooling down, or the dissipation of body heat, is critical for survival. High temperatures do not allow for a good mechanism to effectively dissipate a cow’s internal body heat production.

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Friday, July 13,2012

Beef Talk

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
A slight adjustment backward by one week was made to better position the birth of the calves between May 1 and May 31. However, that brought up the question: Does late calving mean late weaning? If one listens carefully, many presenters will hedge. “That depends” is the most common answer.

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Friday, June 22,2012

Beef Talk

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
Maximum gain, which is the maximum amount of beef produced on any given day by an individual steer, is no longer critical. If a 400-pound calf can gain 4 pounds per day, the calf would reach 1,200 pounds in 200 days or 1,500 pounds in 275 days.

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Friday, June 15,2012

Beef Talk

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
So how does one set goals? Some thoughts at various meetings bring some interesting concepts to the table. For instance, if one wants to market 1,300-pound live-grass steers by 2 years of age, the steers will need to gain 1.7 pounds per day to meet the challenge.

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Friday, June 8,2012

Beef Talk

Integrating a new model isn’t easy

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
In recent years, much discussion has been held regarding grass and beef production. The concept of integrating the two production activities seems like a no-brainer. If it was just the cows visiting with each other, that would be true. However, it is inevitable that people will get in the mix and that’s when the no-brainer starts getting complicated.

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Friday, June 1,2012

Beef Talk

These cows can't catch me now

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
“Those cows can’t catch me now that I don’t have all those heavy coveralls on!” Again, all is good. It has been just more than a year since the Dickinson Research Extension Center initially decided to furlough the bulls for a month by changing bull turnout from early and mid- June to the second week of July.

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Friday, May 25,2012

Beef Talk

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
The first point that needs to be noted is that the beef business does not stand alone. The beef business, which is the business of producing food to feed people, is a subset of agriculture. Therefore, one needs to look at the big picture of agriculture.

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Friday, May 18,2012

Beef Talk

Are your cows ready for breeding?

by Kris Ringwall, North Dakota State University
Well, what is, is. After a long and fairly nice winter, cattle are moving slowly to the cool-season grasses. Many have calves at their side, while others are waiting to calve. However, most of the cows have calved, so the cows and calves are in the process of being worked.

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