The Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC) is proud to co-host Bov-Innovation, an interactive, producer-oriented session that will take place during this summer’s Canadian Beef Industry Conference. The conference, in its third year, will be held in London, Ontario, at the London Convention Centre from August 14-16, 2018. The Canadian Beef Industry Conference is co-hosted annually by the BCRC, Canada Beef, Canadian Beef Breeds Council (CBBC), and The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA).
Bov-Innovation is designed to engage both cow-calf and feedlot beef producers. Sessions are fast-paced yet full of tips, ideas, and concepts that producers can adopt on their farms immediately. Presenters include researchers who will explore the science behind best practices as well as industry leaders who will explain how they incorporate concepts to benefit cattle and ultimately the profitability on their beef operations. Topics are carefully chosen based on producer opinions and this year, two sessions will be offered:
- “Cross-Canada Cattle: Best transport practices” will include information from Derek Haley, PhD of the University of Guelph. Dr. Haley leads a research program on animal welfare and behaviour, and is currently exploring long-distance cattle transport. Feedlot operator Steve Eby from Kincardine, Ontario, will share his experience with shipping and receiving cattle, and will provide his insight for successful transport outcomes.
- “The Grass is Always Greener: Pasture infrastructure and management” will be moderated by Barry Potter, with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs. Barry has a special interest in beef production in northern Ontario and will facilitate presentations from beef producers Jason Desrochers and Tim Lehrbass, who are each farming in diverse regions of Ontario. Desrochers operates a cow-calf and backgrounding farm near Val Gagne in northern Ontario, and will explain how their farm overcomes land use challenges and converts marginal land into forage. Lehrbass farms in southern Ontario, near Alvinston, and will share grazing management strategies from his operation, which was recently recognized for excellence in forage management.
As the breeding season approaches, some producers will consider using artificial insemination (AI) and estrous synchronization in their breeding herd; others will not because of the extra time, labour and management required in an AI program, the perceived costs of implementing AI, or they are unaware of the potential advantages of AI.
In this article, we will review economic analysis that compares the costs and benefits of fixed-time AI and natural service and discuss how recent changes in breeding bull and butcher bull prices affect the cost of breeding programs. We will also look at a recent study that addresses the question of how many clean-up bulls are needed in a fixed-time AI program.
Economic Benefits and Hurdles of Using Fixed-Time AI
Compared to natural service, an obvious potential advantage of fixed time AI is to have more calves born in the first 21 days of the calving season, which allows producers to market larger, more uniform groups of calves. Some studies have shown as much as a 10 to 17 day calf age advantage and 20 to 44 lbs more per calf at weaning as a result of estrous synchronization (Johnson and Chenoweth). Despite the extra costs of an AI program , fixed-time AI is estimated to have a net benefit of $11,110 for a 40-cow herd compared to natural service because of improved conception and wean rates, as well as heavier weaning weights (Lardner et al., 2015). Continue reading
The Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture is now accepting Letters of Intent (LOI’s) for research funding under the Agriculture Development Fund (ADF).
Their deadline is April 16, 2018. More information is available at https://arb.gov.sk.ca.
When requesting funding, researchers are encouraged to refer to the priorities and target research outcomes in the Canadian Beef Research and Technology Transfer Strategy.
The Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association Industry Development Fund (SCAIDF) will issue a separate call for proposals in the coming weeks.
As he follows a proper vaccination program for his cow-herd, Ryan Beierbach also makes sure calves on his southeast Saskatchewan ranch are afforded the same protection. And for the past three years that program has also included early-season treatment with a nasal vaccine, followed later with coverage with injectable products.
It’s all about providing the best protection for calves against common diseases from the get-go, says Beierbach, who ranches near Whitewood, just west of the Manitoba border.
He administers a three-way intranasal vaccine to pasture-born calves at anywhere from two weeks to two-and-a-half months of age. As the herd is processed after May-June calving, usually in early July, all calves also receive an eight-way injectable clostridial vaccine, including tetanus. And then at fall weaning, they also are vaccinated against IBR and BVD. Beierbach believes in covering the bases.
“From the research I’ve seen, the nasal vaccines do a better job of providing immunity to the calf early on,” says Beierbach. “And from my observations, I believe I am seeing improved health in my calves.” Continue reading
Each time you sell cattle in Canada, you pay a national check-off. If you want a better understanding about where your national check-off dollars are spent and the increase from $1/head to $2.50/head, join the Canadian Beef Check-Off Agency’s online town hall on Tuesday, February 27th.
Note: if you registered for all upcoming BCRC webinars, you have not been registered for this webinar, because it is hosted by the Canadian Beef Check-Off Agency, not the BCRC, so you need to click the link below to register for this webinar separately.
We encourage beef producers from across the country to join this town hall webinar and ask questions live. Register here: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/5080677593959345410
There will be two sessions on Tuesday, February 27th to accommodate producers across Canada:
- 3:00pm – 4:30pm MST (2pm PST; 4pm CST; 5pm EST; 6pm AST)
- 6:00pm – 7:30pm MST (5pm PST; 7pm CST; 8pm EST; 9pm AST)
Do you wonder how your cow-calf operation compares with others in your region, province or herd size range on matters like conception rate and weaning weight? A joint effort representing the cow-calf industry from BC, AB, SK and MB is helping Western Canadian cattle producers do just that.
The deadline to participate is February 28, 2018.
By participating in the second Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey, you can choose to receive a complementary report that allows you to compare your own operation with benchmarks (average numbers from a region).
To thank you for completing the survey, which will provide very valuable and needed information to guide research and extension, you will receive up to $50 in gift cards, in addition to the complementary report.
The survey takes about 45-60 minutes to complete and asks questions related to the 2016 breeding season all the way through to weaning of 2017 calf crop, as well as typical management practices. Many of the questions are the quick check-box style. Any question you are unable to answer can be left blank.
Every cow-calf producer in BC, AB, SK and MB is encouraged to complete the survey. All of the information collected will remain confidential. Information cannot be linked to individual operations as data will be aggregated into averages and benchmarks.
The complementary report will Continue reading
If you haven’t done so already, the first few months of 2018 would be an excellent time to develop a relationship with a beef veterinarian.
Starting late in 2018, Health Canada is introducing a couple of important changes affecting the way animal antibiotic products can be accessed by producers. And having an established Veterinary-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR) will be an important part of a smooth transition. (see sidebar below)
Click to download a two page handout on the changes to how antibiotics can be purchased. Handout includes a list of cattle products that will need a prescription as of December 1, 2018.
The key point is, starting Dec. 1, 2018, all livestock producers will need a prescription from a licenced veterinarian, before they can buy a medically important antibiotic (MIA) for therapeutic use in livestock production. This applies to all beef cattle sectors using antibiotics — cow-calf operators, feedlots and feedmills Continue reading
Season’s greetings from everyone at the Beef Cattle Research Council. Wishing you and your herd a joyful and healthy holiday season, and a prosperous new year.
Manitoba Agriculture has announced that the application and terms and conditions for the Research and Innovation stream of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP) are now available on their website.
DESCRIPTION: Grant funding for industry-led projects that contribute to the development of agricultural knowledge and skills and improve the competitiveness and sustainability of Manitoba’s agriculture, agri-food and agri-product sectors.
Projects can fall under one of two streams of funding:
- basic and applied research and development
- strategic investments that build capacity in agricultural research
APPLICATION DEADLINE: The first full proposal and application deadline for 2018/19 fiscal year is Monday, January 8, 2018.
For more information and to apply, visit their website: http://www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/innovation-and-research/priorities/index.html