Minnesota Cattle

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Crossbreeding offers two primary advantages: heterosis (also called hybrid vigor) and the opportunity for breed complementarity. When the performance of crossbred offspring exceeds the performance of the purebred parents, the difference is called heterosis. In other words, the whole can be greater than the sum of the parts. For instance, if straightbred Hereford and Angus calves average 500 pounds at weaning and Hereford x Angus calves average 525 pounds, the heterosis realized is (525-500)/500, or 5 percent. Maximizing Heterosis Realization of heterosis is the closest thing to a free lunch that can be found in the cattle business. Thus, all commercial beef cattle producers should seek to maximize heterosis in their herds. Some crossbreeding systems offer a greater degree of heterosis than others, and some traits respond more to crossbreeding than others. Heterosis is realized in inverse proportion to heritability for a given trait. In other words, lowly heritable traits offer the most heterosis, highly heritable traits the least. Table 1 lists beef cattle traits of economic importance and their heritability estimates. In general, reproductive traits are lowly heritable, growth traits are moderate and carcass traits are highly heritable. Thus, differences in reproductive performance between herds are virtually all due to environment and management, while differences in growth or carcass traits are due primarily to genetics. Also, reproductive traits will respond the most to crossbreeding, carcass traits the least. Read more...


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cattletoday.xml

SVF CATTLE COUNTRY COMMERCIAL REPLACEMENT SALE HELD AUG. 31ST
One thousand, one hundred and eleven commercial females from Florida's leading ranchers found ready acceptance at the recent Cattle Country Sale in Brighton, Fla.
IT'S THE PITTS -- A MOTHER'S PLEA
I'm not in the mood today to try and be funny. And normally I don't believe writers should use their podium to preach to people. In most cases I don't have the qualifications or the credentials.
HUNTIN' DAYLIGHT -- DEMAND-AGGRESSIVE MARKETING BUOY CATTLE PRICES
Cattle numbers continue to grow with national cowherd expansion, and various data suggest herd expansion is continuing this year.
CHUTE-SIDE VACCINE COOLER IS A USEFUL TOOL
A few simple steps can help cattle producers become more effective in battling respiratory disease in their herd, get full value of any vaccine they purchase, and possibly increase their operational profit in the process.
PRODUCERS BENEFIT FROM YEAR-ROUND HERD HEALTH PROGRAM
Many times a producer does not consider or appreciate the value of a good year-round herd health program until confronted with a difficult calving season or an unacceptable level of calf loss from health challenges.
GET CALVES STARTED ON THE RIGHT FOOT AT WEANING
During this time of the year, some producers may consider preconditioning beef calves prior to sale. This involves a multi-step process including weaning, a defined health protocol, nutrition, and marketing plan. The following article describes a few helpful tips for weaning and getting calves started on the right foot:
EARLY WEANING BENEFITS FIRST-CALF COWS
Summer heat can be hard on pastures, cows and calves, especially first-calf cows. These cows are in a special class as they are still trying to maintain body condition, actively grow, support reproduction by gestating with her second calf, and lactating.
PRODUCT HANDLING IS CRITICAL TO HERD HEALTH SUCCESS
The cow-calf production unit is the basis for the entire beef industry. The production of quality calves requires strict attention to the health of all calves, cows and bulls in the facility.
HYDRAULIC CALF TABLES MAKE LIVESTOCK HANDLING EASIER
Chutes and calf tables have made livestock handling easier—on the animals, and for the people doing the job, whether branding, castrating, dehorning, implanting calves, etc.
IT'S THE PITTS -- RATTLED
Despite having lived in, or near, rattlesnake country my entire life I've never known anyone who actually got bit by one, let alone got bit and lived to tell the tale. Until now, that is.
DO YOUR HOMEWORK BEFORE BUYING BULLS
As the bull-buying season gets underway, commercial cattlemen should do their homework to help ensure the bull(s) they purchase this year meet their needs.
PREWEANING CALF MANAGEMENT PRACTICES ADD VALUE TO FEEDERS
The concept of a value added calf (VAC) program is not new today, but in the late 1980's it was thought to have little value in some circles.
THE WORLD ACCORDING TO HOOTER MCCORMICK -- NO WORSTER
LeRoy was ancient. The lines in his face looked deep enough to hide in. His hair, mostly silver now, was still thick; his black eyes continued to sparkle with mischief.
DO HOMEWORK BEFORE HEADING INTO BULL BUYING SEASON
When it comes to genetics, bull selection is the most important decision the cow-calf producer has to make.
BLACK INK -- WEIGHING PREVENTION
Sometimes it only takes a couple of 2-cc subcutaneous shots to head off problems down the line. Sometimes it takes a few tons of steel, careful planning and focused construction.

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