Nebraska: Ranching for Profitability series begins Jan. 10
What helps make a ranch profitable? Herd health and managing risk impact the bottom line. Ranchers can learn more about current issues and topics important to ranch management and beef production when the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension hosts the popular Ranching for Profitability meeting series across western and central Nebraska Jan. 10-13.
Gone is the cyclic cattle cycle, and with it the days of reliable up and downs. Planning in uncertain and global markets will be covered by Dr. Darrell Mark, who will walk participants through step-by-step to “Build A Marketing Plan For Risky Times.” The plan can be used every year to hedge once the calves hit the ground. Mark will discuss the options to reduce risk in fluctuating markets.
Spring rains bring plentiful summer grass, but also provide a good habitat for bugs. The last several wet summers have led to an increase of flies on cattle. Dave Boxler, UNL Extension Educator entomologist, will discuss “Fly Control Methodology for Pastured Cattle in Nebraska.” Stable flies, horn flies and face flies can cause reduced weight gains, either from blood loss or cattle spend their time fighting flies instead of grazing.
Flies can become resistant to eartags, if the same pesticide is used every year. Boxler will talk about new insecticide eartags recently approved for use in cattle. He also will discuss what pesticides to use, and when, to prevent fly outbreaks. Sometimes the best control is to spray early to control fly populations, and not wait until a fly explosion has occurred. Other pasture fly control methods, such as rubs, mist blowers, and spraying, will be discussed.
With those extra flies come health problems for cattle. Some ranchers have noticed more pinkeye in cattle since the drought. Dr. Richard Randle, UNL Extension veterinarian, says pinkeye continues to be a problem affecting cattle performance. Randle will review the latest updates on methods of treatments and prevention.
Also, there are growing concerns about antibiotic use and antibiotic resistance. Randle will answer the question “How can I be responsible with my antibiotic use?” with continued antibiotic effectiveness, to prevent residues in food, and avoid antibiotic resistance in bacteria.
Meeting dates, locations and times:
• Jan. 10: O’Neill, Courthouse Annex Meeting Room. 10 a.m. CT.
• Jan. 10: Ainsworth, Zion Lutheran Church, 5 p.m. CT.
• Jan. 11: Broken Bow, Broken Bow 4-H Building, 10:30 a.m. CT.
• Jan. 11: Elm Creek, Village Center (Water Tower), 5 p.m. CT.
• Jan. 12: Valentine, Cedar Canyon Steakhouse, 10 a.m. CT.
• Jan. 12: Mullen, Sandhills RC&D Building, 5 p.m. MT.
• Jan. 13: Kimball, Kimball Event Center, 10:30 MT.
To register, call the local UNL Extension Office. Pre-registration is encouraged one week prior for a meal count. Contacts include: O’Neill 402-336-2760, Ainsworth 402-387-221, Broken Bow 308-872-6831, Elm Creek 308-324-5501, Valentine 402-376-1850, Mullen 308-645-2267, and Kimball 308-235-3122. Registration is $15.
The Ranching for Profitability meeting series is sponsored by UNL Extension and Pfizer Animal Health with support from local sponsors.
Many livestock producers are utilizing stockpiled pasture, hay regrowth and warm- or cool-season annuals to extend the grazing season this fall.