Beef - Horse - Poultry - Sheep - Swine. August 2016

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1 Virginia Cooperative Extension Animal & Poultry Sciences 366 Litton Reaves (0306) Blacksburg, Virginia / Fax: 540/ Livestock Update Beef - Horse - Poultry - Sheep - Swine August 2016 This LIVESTOCK UPDATE contains timely subject matter on beef cattle, horses, poultry, sheep, swine, and related junior work. Use this material as you see fit for local newspapers, radio programs, newsletters, and for the formulation of recommendations. IN THIS ISSUE: Dates to Remember... 2 August Herd Advisor... 3 Sheep Field Day, Annual VA Performance Tested Ram Lamb & Replacement Ewe Sale th Annual Virginia Tech Sheep Center Production Sale Virginia Tech Southwest AREC Forage Based Ram Test, 5 th Annual Field Day & Ram Sale Across-Breed EPD Table Scott P. Greiner, Extension Project Leader Department of Animal & Poultry Sciences Invent the Future V I R G I N I A P O L Y T E C H N I C I N S T I T U T E A N D S T A T E U N I V E R S I T Y Extension is a joint program of Virginia Tech, Virginia State University, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and state and local governments. Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

2 Dates to Remember August 27 th -Sheep Field Day, 41 st Annual Virginia Performance Tested Ram Lamb Sale and Replacement Ewe Sale; 10:30AM-Field Day and 1:00PM- Ram & Ewe Sale; Shenandoah Valley Research and Extension Center, 2763 Raphine Rd., Raphine, VA. Contact: Dr. Scott Greiner, Virginia Tech , website: September 3 rd - 17 th Annual Virginia Tech Sheep Center Production Sale. 10:00AM Alphin Stuart Livestock Arena, Blacksburg,Virginia. Contact: Dr. Scott Greiner, Virginia Tech, , or Dave Linker, or Phil Keffer, at the Copenhaver Sheep Center, rd Virginia Tech Southwest AREC Forage Based Ram Test, 5 th Annual Field Day & Ram Sale. VA Tech Southwest AREC, VPI Farm Rd. Glade Spring, VA Contact: Lee Wright, Virginia Tech SW AREC, or Dr. Scott Greiner, Website: 2

3 August Herd Management Advisor Scott P. Greiner Extension Beef Specialist, Virginia Tech Summer throughout the region has brought its share of hot weather, and typical spotty rainfall. A priority this month needs to be preparation and fertilization for stockpiling of tall fescue. This would include removal of existing forage through grazing or clipping, fertilization with a minimum of 45 lb. N/acre, and resting for as long as possible. The additional forage growth accumulated through stockpiling is great way to reduce winter hay feeding and provide superior nutrition. Another forage-related item is to evaluate current pasture conditions for spring born calves. The primary determinant of calf performance during the last days prior to weaning is pasture quality. Moving the herd to better grass or allowing calves access to creep feed or creep grazing are also options. Typical feed to gain conversions of creep diets usually are around 8 lb feed/ lb of gain, so cost of feed and value of added gain need to be evaluated before committing to this management strategy. Beyond the potential value of additional weight gain, training calves to eat feed pays dividends later if calves are retained and preconditioned at home prior to marketing. While high levels of creep intake might be economical, moderate levels of intake are more desirable due to enhanced efficiency of gain and avoiding calves becoming too fleshy which may impact feeder calf price. After calves begin eating 2-3 lbs/hd/d, intake can be moderated through the inclusion of 2-3% white salt in the creep diet. Likewise, fall-calving cows will benefit from a higher plane of nutrition provided by higher quality forage at calving time. Spring Calving Herds (January-March) General End breeding season early in month (if not already completed). Make plans for marketing of calf crop. Plan early to time weaning, vaccination program, and weaning management in concert with marketing plans. Calculate break-evens on various marketing options and consider risk management strategies. Begin planning for winter by evaluating feed and forage supplies and options. Nutrition and Forages Continue to manage first-calf heifers separately; give them best forage Continue to feed high Se trace mineral salt. A forage analysis can reveal what other minerals should be supplemented. Continue to manage growth of warm season grass pastures by rotational grazing Store your high quality hay in the dry. Collect and submit forage samples for nutrient analysis Reserve high quality hay and a pasture area for calves post-weaning Herd Health Continue parasite and fly control program for herd. Monitor fly numbers to insure tags are still effective. 3

4 Finalize vaccination and preconditioning protocol for calf crop. Administer preweaning vaccinations. Reproduction Make plans to pregnancy check heifers as soon as possible after bull removal. This will allow options in marketing open heifers. Remove bulls after 60 days for controlled calving season Schedule pregnancy check of cow herd with veterinarian Genetics Collect 205-day weights on calf crop at appropriate time (AHIR age range days), along with cow weights, hip heights and body condition scores (cow mature size data taken within 45 days of calf weaning measure). Fall Calving Herds (September-November) General Prepare for calving season by checking inventory and securing necessary supplies (ob equipment, tube feeder, colostrum supplement, ear tags, animal health products, calving book, etc.) Begin planning for winter by evaluating feed and forage supplies and options. Nutrition and Forages Continue to feed high Se trace mineral salt. Body condition score bred females. Plan nutrition and grazing program based on BCS. This is the most efficient period to put weight and condition on thinner cows prior to calving Evaluate growth and development of replacement heifers. Adjust nutrition and management to achieve 65% of mature weight by breeding season. Low levels of protein supplementation can be effective in stimulating performance if forage has become mature. Reserve high quality hay and a pasture area for cows post-weaning. Manage growth of warm season grass pastures by rotational grazing Store your high quality hay in the dry. Collect and submit forage samples for nutrient analysis. Herd Health Administer mid-summer deworming on replacement heifers and pregnant heifers Continue parasite and fly control program for herd. 4

5 Genetics Identify replacement heifers. Utilize available tools including genetics, dam performance, individual performance, and phenotype. Restrict replacement heifer pool to those born in defined calving season. Evaluate bull battery and begin planning for the breeding season by evaluating herd goals and objectives. 5

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9 2016 ACROSS-BREED EPD TABLE A table of adjustment factors used to estimate across-breed expected progeny differences (AB-EPDs) for eighteen breeds was released at the Beef Improvement Federation Annual Meeting in Manhattan, KS on June 16 (see Table 1). Across-breed adjustment factors have been calculated for growth traits and maternal milk since Adjustment factors for carcass traits have been calculated since 2009 and carcass weight was added in 2015; to be included, breeds must have carcass data in the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (USMARC) database and report their carcass EPDs on an actual carcass basis using an age-adjusted endpoint. Bulls of different breeds can be compared on the same EPD scale by adding the appropriate adjustment factor to the EPDs produced in the most recent genetic evaluations for each of the eighteen breeds. The AB-EPDs are most useful to commercial producers purchasing bulls of more than one breed to use in cross-breeding programs. For example, in terminal cross-breeding systems, AB-EPDs can be used to identify bulls in different breeds with high growth potential or favorable carcass characteristics. As an example, suppose a Charolais bull has a weaning weight EPD of lb and a Hereford bull has a weaning weight EPD of lb. The across-breed adjustment factors for weaning weight (see Table 1) are 34.6 lb for Charolais and -7.8 lb for Hereford. The AB-EPD is 25.0 lb lb = 59.6 lb for the Charolais bull and = 47.2 lb for the Hereford bull. The expected weaning weight difference when both are mated to cows of another breed (e.g., Angus) would be 59.6 lb 47.2 lb = 12.4 lb. Most breed associations publish EPDs at least on an annual basis. These EPDs predict differences expected in performance of future progeny of two or more bulls within the same breed for traits including birth weight, weaning weight, yearling weight, and maternal milking ability (as reflected in progeny weaning weights). Normally, the EPDs of bulls from different breeds cannot be compared because most breed associations compute their EPDs in separate analyses and each breed has a different base point. The across-breed adjustment factors allow producers to compare the EPDs for animals from different breeds for these traits; these factors reflect both the current breed difference (for animals born in 2014) and differences in the breed base point. They 9

10 should only be used with EPDs current as of June 2016 because of potential changes in EPD calculations from year-to-year. It is important to note that the table factors (Table 1) do not represent a direct comparison among the different breeds because of base differences between the breeds. They should only be used to compare the EPDs (AB-EPDs) of animals in different breeds. To reduce confusion, breed of sire means (i.e., when sires from two different breeds are mated to cows of a third, unrelated breed) for animals born in 2014 under conditions similar to USMARC are presented in Table 2. The adjustment factors in Table 1 were updated using EPDs from the most recent national cattle evaluations conducted by each of the eighteen breed associations (current as of March 2016). The breed differences used to calculate the factors are based on comparisons of progeny of sires from each of these breeds in the Germplasm Evaluation Program at USMARC in Clay Center, Nebraska. These analyses were conducted by USMARC geneticists Larry Kuehn ( ph: ) and Mark Thallman ( ph: ). 10

11 TABLE 1: ADJUSTMENT FACTORS TO ADD TO EPDs OF EIGHTEEN DIFFERENT BREEDS TO ESTIMATE ACROSS BREED EPD Breed Birth Wt. (lb) Weaning Wt. (lb) Yearling Wt. (lb) Maternal Milk (lb) Marbling Score a Ribeye Area (in 2 ) Fat Thickness (in) Carcass Wt.(lb) Angus Hereford Red Angus Shorthorn South Devon Beefmaster Brahman Brangus Santa Gertrudis Braunvieh Charolais Chiangus Gelbvieh Limousin Maine-Anjou Salers Simmental Tarentaise a Marbling score units: 4.00 = Sl 00 ; 5.00 = Sm 00 11

12 TABLE 2: BREED OF SIRE MEANS FOR 2014 BORN ANIMALS UNDER CONDITIONS SIMILAR TO USMARC Breed Birth Wt. (lb) Weaning Wt. (lb) Yearling Wt. (lb) Maternal Milk (lb) Marbling Score a Ribeye Area (in 2 ) Fat Thickness (in) Carcass Wt.(lb) Angus Hereford Red Angus Shorthorn South Devon Beefmaster Brahman Brangus Santa Gertrudis Braunvieh Charolais Chiangus Gelbvieh Limousin Maine-Anjou Salers Simmental Tarentaise a Marbling score units: 4.00 = Sl 00 ; 5.00 = Sm 00

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