Hay feeding often begins in November. To improve efficiency of feed utilization in beef cows, Rumensin is a unique type of additive called an ionophore that is approved for use in beef cows.
It is very important to forage test each cutting of hay. Knowing the nutrient values (crude protein and TDN) of each cutting of hay will determine the proper supplemental feed and the amount to feed. In addition , knowing which cutting is the highest quality, it can be feed to the group of cows with the highest nutritional demand (i.e. first calf heifers or lactating cows).Have bulls tested for breeding soundness. Remember 20% (1 out of 5) bulls fail a breeding soundness examination.
Tips for Fall Calving Herds:
Any bull changing ownership within the State of Arkansas (check your state laws) shall have a negative trichomoniasis test within 30 days prior to change of ownership with no exposure to females from 7 days prior to the test at the time at the change of ownership. The test must be conducted by a licensed veterinarian. An exception to the rule is a virgin bull less than 24 months of age. For addition questions, contact the Arkansas Livestock and Poultry Commission.
Fall calving season should be coming to an end.
Vaccinate cows prior to the breeding season.
Breeding heifers 20 to 30 days before the mature cow breeding season.
Check cows and heifer's body condition. It is very important to maintain body condition through the lactating period and breeding season to ensure high re-breeding rates.
Provide free choice mineral.
Care of newborn calf - dip navels, ear tag, castrate, etc.
Tips for Spring Calving Herds:
Monitor heifers for spring calving season. Heifer should be calving 20 to 30 days before the mature cows. Monitor heifer's body condition, etc. Heifers should weight 85% of their mature weight at calving.
Prepare for spring calving season. Make a list of equipment to ensure that when a problem arises, you will be ready. Items on your list may include: OB gloves, OB lubricant, esophageal feeder, bottle and nipple, chain straps/chains, calf puller, sterile syringes and needles, batteries for flashlight or spotlight, old rags or blankets, toolbox to keep calving equipment, colostrum replacement, electrolytes, Oxytocin, etc.
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