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Working Ranch - March 2016

MARCH 2016 | WORKING RANCH | 95 Medicine, walked us through this complex topic in a way that made it easy to understand. The strategy to develop beef replacement heifers is to aim for ‘front-end loading’ – where 60% of the heifers are bred in the first 21 days. To add to that: • The goal is momentum optimization. • When the heifer has her 2nd calf, it will likely be in the first 21 days of the calving season. • Calves will be heavier through year 6. • Expect one extra calf over her lifetime. • Calendar birth is highly heritable. • Hot carcass weight is heritable. I would encourage our readers to partake in Dr. White’s presentation on this topic should the opportunity arise, because it just might be a top 5 most important cow/calf strategy to master, in my opinion. SESSION 5 BQA CERTIFICATION Although I’ve been BQA certified for quite some time, I wanted to run through the process again to get an update. Glad I did. Dr. Dan Thomson, 2015 National Beef Quality Assurance Educator of the Year had plenty of good information to share: • BQA will be the cornerstone of the program that will keep our technological advances online. • 90% of handling issues occur moving cattle into the snake or chute. • “Castration is not technique, it’s associated with accidentally poking the offhand with the needle. Instead, using a 5/8” to ½” 16 or 18 gauge needle, enter the skin from the top at a 45° angle to the site and inject according to label recommendations. • There are valid concerns coming to light with RDS (remote delivery system – darts, etc.) misuse as it relates to carcass quality, food safety and animal welfare. • We are making a lot of headway – 22,000 BQA certifications in two years (companies like BIVI help out a lot with their regular ‘free BQA certification’ campaigns). The biggest opportunity to educate is at the stocker cow/calf level. Great to know our BQA efforts are healthy and growing strong. Well, that was enough learnin’ in one sitting for this old cowboy, so I backslapped some of my editor buddies on the way out the door, grabbed a seventy dollar cab ride to the KC airport, and elbowed my way aboard the WR corporate jet for the short ride home. When I hired on this outfit ten years ago, they told me I could take the corporate jet anywhere I wanted. “No problem”, they said. “Just head to the nearest Southwest gate and we’ll send it right over.” timing” (referring to “when” to do it – early in the calf’s life – as opposed to “how” to do it). • “I think the local veterinarian could be used for more. Get them out there.” • The #1 cause of tetanus is banding without using a tetanus toxoid. • Tenting skin / sub-Q injection… BQA no longer recommends that the handler tent the skin with the offhand prior to administering a sub-Q injection due to the risk


Working Ranch - March 2016
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