The Blueprint® nutritional program is designed to deliver needed mineral supplementation, but in a more efficient, targeted manner. Bioplex® organic trace minerals are better absorbed, stored and utilized by the animal than inorganic mineral sources.
The Alltech® Mineral Management program has proven that modern management of mineral nutrition can be carried out by the inclusion of organic trace minerals in the form of Bioplex® at significantly lower levels than inorganics, while still improving performance.
The saying goes that you can’t manage what you can’t measure. This is especially true when it comes to feed. Given that feed costs account for over 80% of the cost of raising livestock, managing feed supplements is of utmost importance in maintaining productivity and profitability. In this regard Ridley Block Operations has developed technology to help you better manage your supplements.
As we approach the hot summer months, more and more producers are dealing with the nuisance of pinkeye. Pinkeye is a highly infectious bacterial disease. Although pinkeye is nonfatal, it costs cattle producers over $150 million per year. These expenses result from decreased weight gain, reduced milk production and treatment costs. Additionally, infected animals are worth less at sale time. Pinkeye is second only to scours/diarrhea in terms of diseases affecting calves.
Ruminants (cattle, sheep, goats, etc.) have the unique ability to utilize materials which are undigestible by humans (grasses, forbes and other roughages) and convert them into highly nutritious food for human consumption. This is made possible by the symbiotic relationship between rumen microbes and the ruminant. The ability to convert inexpensive, underutilized roughages into high quality meat and milk is the main advantage ruminants have over other commercially raised livestock (pork, poultry, etc.). Given that forages are among the least expensive feeds available, it goes without saying that anything we can do to maximize forage intake and/or utilization is going to positively affect economic returns.
Many of you may have already heard of the new Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) proposed by FDA. In a nutshell, previous FDA rules were focused primarily on identifying food safety problems after they occurred and responding accordingly. FSMA seeks to help prevent food safety issues in both humans and animals through preventative controls throughout all levels of production, storage and distribution. Part of the fallout of FSMA is the topic of antibiotic use in meat animals. With debate still ongoing, one thing is clear, that reliance on antibiotic use in food animals is on a downward trend. With this in mind, it is going to be more important than ever to build strong immune systems in our calves through sound nutrition.
Excessive fly populations can literally suck the profit out of your cattle operation. Biting flies reduce weaning weights, lower milk production and spread disease. Why should your hard-earned money go toward feeding flies? In today’s economic environment, it is more important than ever to keep fly populations in check to maximize efficiency and profitability.
With calf prices at near record highs, it makes more sense than ever to utilize Rumensin® to maximize weight gains on high quality small grain forages this spring. Rumensin® makes additional energy available to the animal through manipulation of rumen fermentation. Based on research growth trials, it can be calculated that the additional energy derived from feeding 200 mg of Rumensin daily to growing calves is equivalent to the energy derived from roughly 1.0 lb of corn. With so many Rumensin® supplement options available, why are STOCKADE® Rumensin® Pressed Blocks the best option for stocker cattle operators wishing to feed Rumensin®?
With the herd expansion in full swing and heifers being more valuable now than ever before, it makes sense to be concerned about dystocia in heifers. Injury caused by dystocia causes up to 80% of perinatal calf losses and is most common in first calf heifers. Excessive calf size can result in malpresentation due to the calf not being able to properly position itself in the birth canal or total fetopelvic disproportion requiring C-section delivery.
Stocker cattle represent a great opportunity to turn forages into profit for the savvy cattleman. With calf prices at near record highs, stocker calves represent a lot of potential gain, but also a lot of potential loss. The keys to a successful stocker program lie in pasture management, cost control and animal management.