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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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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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