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TheBeefSite Newsletter - 16 September 2015

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Wednesday 16th September 2015.
Michael Priestley - Editor

Michael Priestley

MSD Animal Health

Build A Cow For A Hotter Planet

Global warming will pressure cattle productivity and welfare as heat stress becomes a growing issue, but experts are quick to note that help is at hand.

A wide variety of phenotypes exist that can abate heat stress, a risk that was costing the US cattle industry $369 million each year around 2003.

According to an Oklahoma State University literature review, research dating back decades illustrates that fatter, blacker, more excitable cattle could be bred out with beneficial impacts on heat tolerance.

These are part of an armoury of techniques cattle producers have, including the “slick hair gene”, which was mapped to chromosome 20 in Senepol cattle. Also present in the Spanish Criollo breeds, this Gene was introgressed into Holstein, among others.

Research has demonstrated the importance of hair shedding, a heritable trait, to winter coats, with cows shedding over 50 per cent of their coat before June 1 had calves weighing 11kg more than cows that did not shed their coast as quickly.

And in terms of body condition score (BCS), one score can mean a ten per cent change in stress level.

Other Findings

  • Dark skin has 93 per cent thermal absorption, compared to non-pigmented skin at 43 per cent, which is why dark cattle so readily seek shade.
  • Excitable animals have been found to be 3.2 per cent more stressed than calmer counterparts, with weight gain suffering as a result.
  • Incorporating Bos Indicus genetics increases heat tolerance at some loss to performance.
  • Herefords sweat more and have higher rectal temperatures than Brahmans.
  • Crossing Bos Indicus genetics into a cow herd is a weapon against the heat and has the “added bonus” of maternal heterosis which can provide dramatic improvements in lowly heritable traits like fertility.

Official Veterinarian Conference Swindon, 22 - 23 October 2015

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This Week's Articles and Analysis

More Than Just Supplier Number Fifty: Promoting Good Rancher, Processor Relationships
When communication abounds and shared goals between packer and supplier are understood, both can benefit. A Canadian meat packer reveals eights steps to fostering a good relationship between a meat processor and a ranch.

Market Reports

AHDB Cattle and Sheep Weekly - 14 September 2015
USDA WASDE - 14 September 2015

Global Beef Industry News

   United Kingdom

British Labour Party Appoints Vegan to Deal with Farming Issues
Infographic Sheds Light on What Food We Need
Monitoring Wellbeing of Animals through Precision Livestock Farming
Targeted Technology to Solve Agricultural Challenges
Scientists Find Welsh, Scottish TB Regimes Effective
Beef Sector in Spotlight as UK Farming Unions Meet in Brussels
Farmers Ask for Fairer Sharing of Scotland's Record Food Returns
Farm Environment Subsidies Have Positive Effect
Farmers Use Pigs to Keep Cattle Calm
UK Food Export Value Falls
Two New Humane Slaughter Research Scholarships Announced

   European Union

Guidelines Issued on Use of Antimicrobials in Veterinary Medicine
EU Vote Supports Expansion of Animal Cloning Ban

   United States

CME: US Meat Consumption to Grow
USDA Lowers 2015 Cattle Production and Price Forecast

   New Zealand

Farmer Beef and Sheep Levy Board Get 84 Per Cent Support
Theileria Veterinary Handbook 2 Now Available


Bluetongue Found in Central France


Further Bluetongue Cases Reported in Romania, Hungary
Bluetongue Strikes Again For Romanians


FAO Food Price Index Registered Steady Meat Prices in August


Urban Sprawl Wrecking Italian Farmland through Landslides


The Drost Project - A Visual Guide to Porcine, Pig Reproduction.
Biomin - Dairy Heifer: How to Get a Fast Start to Greater Lifetime Profit
US Sales Manager Wanted - 5m Publishing
Official Veterinarian Conference - Swindon, 22 - 23 October 2015 Book your place now


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