- news, features, articles and disease information for the cattle industry

TheBeefSite Newsletter - 2 April 2014

TheBeefSite Weekly Newsletter
You are receiving this email as you are a subscriber of
The home of premium international beef news and information.
Is this email not displaying correctly?
View it in your browser.
Wednesday 2nd April 2014.
Michael Priestley - Editor

Michael Priestley

Hard Winter Causes Cattle Death Spike in Kentucky

Higher death loss rates are being reported across all ages of cattle in Kentucky as veterinarians assess the impact of a very testing winter.

Advice going out to farmers is to supplement feed until spring grass becomes nutritious enough to support cattle after a winter which has proven too much for cows fed hay alone.

Malnutrition is a perennial issue and every year about this time Dr Michelle Arnold and her team at the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory inspect older fallen cattle that have been stripped of fat stores – down to a body condition score of 2-3 – and been termed ‘bloated’ by the owners.

Summing up a typical year, Dr Arnold said: “Despite having had access to free choice hay, these old girls have just 'run out of gas' with a belly full of hay and green grass just around the corner.”

But the 2013/14 winter has caused deaths earlier in the winter and to younger stock, with many pre-weaning calves perishing, says Dr Arnold .

“It is likely that winter feeding programmes on many farms have been inadequate for pregnant/lactating cows and growing calves.”

Dr Arnold explained that when cattle are wet the critical temperature is at 59°F, which drops to 18°F when dry.

Every degree below critical temperature requires stock to expend two per cent more calories and Dr Arnold claims that many hay rations have not cut the mustard this winter.

“Although hay may look good, unless a producer has had their hay tested for nutritional content, they do not know what the true feed value is,” warned Dr Arnold.

“Producers need to realize that cattle can actually 'starve to death' while consuming all the hay they can eat.”

Subsequently, Dr Louis Pittman, veterinary pathologist at the Breathitt Veterinary Centre has reminded cattlemen that hay with protein levels under four per cent and Total Digestible Nutrients below 30 per cent is not sufficient for a late gestation cow.

He said that a typical 1,200 pound cow requires no less than 54 per cent TDN and eight per cent crude protein in the final 60 days of gestation.

Dr Pittman’s message is that protein is key as calves born from protein deficient dams find it difficult to generate sufficient body heat.

He said: “We have received numerous calls and diagnostic submissions associated with 'weak calf syndrome' or full-term calves which were presumed to have been born dead.”

Moreover, liver inspections show that many cattle are deficient of selenium and copper which should be addressed through mineral supplementation, Dr Pittman added.

This has caused malnutrition cases and herd-wide outbreaks of respiratory disease, including pneumonia in pre-weaned calves, he concluded. 

Further Reading

You can read more on this story by clicking here.

The 5m Beef App is now available on your mobile.

Get the latest international beef news, in-depth feature articles, event details and more, delivered direct to your mobile device.

It's free and automatically optimised, giving you the best user experience.

Featured Book of the Week

Animal Cannibalism: The Dark Side of Evolution Animal Cannibalism: The Dark Side of Evolution
This is a study of the phenomenon of cannibalism in those animals known to prey upon and eat their own kind. The book is structured in accordance with conventional taxonomy and ranges from microbes to mammals.
Order Now Online

This Week's Articles and Analysis

Is Your Bull Fit For Purpose?
Some shocking figures have revealed the cost a dud bull can bring to a beef herd and indicated that bigger is not necessarily better.

What Happens to Phosphorous When You Spread it On Pasture?
New research is shedding light on how clovers take up applied phosphorus (P) in pastures, write consultants at Meat and Livestock Australia.

Udder Quality is Moderately Heritable in Hereford Cattle
Hereford breeders looking at developing heifers with durable udders can look at heritability, according to a Kansas State University study.

How Can We Protect Against Bovine Tuberculosis?
American research is striving to combat tuberculosis on many fronts. Researchers are sharpening up diagnosis in cattle and conducting experimental vaccination programmes on an Iowa deer herd - a known vector of the disease.

Market Reports

Dairy Australia - Hay and Grain Prices - Week Ending 28 March 2014
EBLEX Cattle Weekly - 28 March 2014
USDA Agricultural Prices - 28 March 2014
NAB Australian Rural Commodities Wrap - March 2014
USDA GAIN: New Zealand Livestock and Beef Semi-annual 2014
Irish CSO Reports: Livestock Slaughterings February 2014

Global Beef Industry News


Blistering Australian Heat Leads to Grim Profit Predictions
Australian Cattle Markets Move Higher

   United Kingdom

Compound Feed Production Down Marginally in EU
Antibiotic Featured in Newspaper Story Unrelated to Farm Animal Use
£4 Million Investment for UK Food Production Innovation
Water Abstraction Licensing A 'Mixed Bag' for Farming Industry
Two People Contract TB from Pet Cat in First Ever Case
Could Horse Meat Scandal Happen Again?
Imported Cattle End 30 Year Scab Free Run For Scots
Potential For Dire Liver Fluke After Mild Wet Winter
Charles Sercombe Back in the NFU Livestock Chair
Concern at Call for Sick Animals to be Slaughtered not Treated

   Korea, South

South Korea to Give Green Light to Zilmax Beef from June

   European Union

Have Your Say on the EU Common Agricultural Policy
New Plans for European Organic Farming
Antimicrobial Resistance Remains in Commonly Detected in Bacteria in Humans, Animals and Food


Dutch Safety Board Calls for Tighter Food Safety Standards

   United States

Wyckoff's Weekly Livestock Outlook: Markets Lower at Start of Week
Cattle Futures: Live and Feeder Contracts Report Losses, Monday
CME: Volume of Pork, Beef Exported More Resilient than Expected
USDA Estimates Reasonably Close to Expectations
Cattle Outlook: New Highs by Fed Cattle
Cattle Futures: Advantage Bulls, Thursday
Cattle Futures: June Live Cattle Lifts $1.17, Wednesday
Alliance to Discuss Sustainability at Summit
EPA's Proposed Clean Water Act Rule Pleases Farmers Union
Cattle Futures: Feeders Continue Four Week Uptrend, Tuesday
Wyckoff's Weekly Livestock Outlook: Mixed Picture Across Markets
PEDV Will Cause Significant Shortfall, Other Meats to Fill the Gap


Is Eating Red and Processed Meat as Harmful as Some Say?
Africa’s Youth Key to Strengthening Agricultural Economy
Beer Marinade Could Reduce Levels of Harmful Substances in Grilled Meats
Peter Kendall New President of World Farmers Organisation
Industry Groups Lose Latest Appeal over COOL
Weather Poses Farmer Headaches Both Sides of Atlantic


Production to Resume at VION Bad Bramstedt


Chinese Edge Closer to Mastitis-free GM Cow
Fall in Prices of Chinese Agro-foodstuff


Cattle Slaughter Rates Higher in Chile


Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia Found in Nomadic Herd


The Drost Project - A Visual Guide to Porcine, Pig Reproduction.
VIV India 2014
VIV Europe 2014



Life Technologies
Biomin - The Natural Way


Animax Veterinary Health
The Pig, Poultry, Beef, Fish, Dairy, Meat, Cattle, Crop & Bioenergy Sites From 5M Publishing From 5M Publishing

unsubscribe from this list | update subscription preferences


Seasonal Picks