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Ag Decision Maker

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The 2023 Fencing and Grazing Clinic, organized and hosted by Iowa Beef Center and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, is set for May 16 at the ISU Armstrong Research Farm near Lewis in southwest Iowa. Iowa State extension beef specialist Erika Lundy-Woolfolk said the clinic is timely and practical. By holding this clinic in May, we hope participants will be able to take more information they’ve learned and put it to use this grazing season, she said.

Research has consistently shown that calves born earlier in the season are more profitable. To help beef producers optimize the potential for getting more females bred earlier, the Iowa Beef Center at Iowa State University and Select Sires are partnering on a breeding season workshop set for April 13. The program will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Community Building at the Guthrie County Fairgrounds, 402 W State St., Guthrie Center.

It’s peak calving season for many producers across the Midwest which may mean long exhausting and occasionally frustrating hours of trying to save every calf. Iowa State University extension beef specialist Patrick Wall said a simple technique might help some newborns that struggle to nurse or appear to have little will to live.

While long term drought can lead to changes in grazing and forage selection for beef producers, it also can affect feedlot numbers which in turn affect operational decisions and strategies. Iowa State University extension beef specialist Beth Doran said drought has reduced the supply of beef calves available to feedlots, causing producers to source dairy and beef-dairy cross animals to fill the void. However, dairy and beef-dairy cross animals present unique production and carcass challenges for a feedlot. These challenges are the focus of the 2023 Dairy Beef Short Course set for March 28 at the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls, SD.

Given the recent precipitation and the weather forecast, things are shaping up to create very muddy conditions in Iowa just as spring calving season is really taking off. Mud is always a headache but it can be particularly challenging for cattle producers during calving season. Chris Clark, ISU beef specialist, describes some of these challenges and offers a few suggestions to help producers manage muddy conditions.



News Archives


Dan Loy in The Cattleman Magazine

Dan Loy, Iowa Beef Center director, writes this monthly column featured in Iowa Cattleman Magazine.

March 2023

Precision Beef Production

Through educational meetings and trade shows this winter, I’ve learned much about the current state and future direction of precision livestock technologies for the beef industry. Many companies are investing heavily in this area and it is a very active area of research at major universities.

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Iowa Cow-Calf Commentary

Iowa Beef Center and extension cow-calf specialist Randie Culbertson writes the "Iowa Cow-Calf Commentary" featured in the Iowa Cattleman Magazine.

March 2023

The value of research herds

In the context of a production operation’s value, I think of it in terms of financial viability through the value of its assets, profitability and economic feasibility over time. When I think of the value of research herds, I don’t think of it in terms of monetary value. Instead, I think of the value of its contributions to scientific knowledge and application to the beef industry. Research herds are uniquely positioned to conduct research that would not be practical for beef producers to conduct, yet provide information and scientific data for application in today’s cattle operations.

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