Beef Cow Herd Planning Calendar

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This is the December excerpt of Beef Cow Herd Planning Calendar, ANR-0968-A.

Health Tips

  • Monitor cattle for lice.
  • Supplement vitamin A, when necessary, if frosted grass or weathered hay is the primary forage source.

Forage & Nutrition Notes

  • Monitor body condition scores, and adjust nutritional program as needed.
  • Continue using stockpiled tall fescue and bermudagrass.
  • Limiting grazing cool-season annuals for a few hours per day is a good way to use winter forages efficiently once they reach a target height of 6 to 8 inches.
  • Modify winter supplementation based on forage analysis information, availability, and herd nutritional requirements.

Winter Calving Herd

  • Make sure calving supplies are on hand.
  • Move heifers into clean, dry pastures, and check frequently.
  • Monitor bred heifers closely for calving.
  • Tag calves at birth, and keep good calving records (birth weight, tag numbers, cow IDs).
  • Establish an ID system, and tag calves at birth.

Spring Calving Herd

  • Train calves to eat from a bunk and drink from a water trough.
  • Select and permanently identify replacement heifers.
  • Plan a heifer development program to reach target breeding weights.

Fall Calving Herd

  • Calculate fall calving percentage.
  • Watch calves for scours, and restock calving supplies.
  • Begin breeding replacement heifers to calve about 1 month before cows.
  • Expect heifers bred by early December to calve by mid-September.
  • Tag, castrate, dehorn, and implant calves as soon as practically possible. Do not implant replacement heifers.

This is the September excerpt of Beef Cow Herd Planning Calendar, ANR-0968-A.

Health Tips

  • Reduce cattle stress during hot weather; provide adequate shade and water.
  • Watch for pinkeye.

Forage & Nutrition Notes

  • Monitor body condition scores and adjust nutritional program as needed.
  • Watch for fall armyworms in pastures and hay fields.
  • Prepare to stockpile tall fescue and bermudagrass pastures for winter grazing.
  • Watch dallisgrass pastures for ergot contamination.
  • Plant and fertilize cool-season forages in prepared seedbeds.

Winter Calving Herd

  • Wean calves based on market and pasture conditions, and deworm at weaning.
  • Vaccinate for respiratory and other diseases based on veterinary advice.
  • Train calves to eat from a bunk and drink from a water trough.
  • Perform pregnancy checks on cows/heifers and cull on pregnancy status, soundness, health, and performance.

Spring Calving Herd

  • Market bulls that will not be used again for breeding.
  • Schedule pregnancy checks 45 to 60 days after the end of the breeding season.
  • Observe cows and heifers for return to heat.

Fall Calving Herd

  • Monitor bred heifers closely for calving.
  • Maintain good calving records.
  • Establish an ID system, and tag calves at birth.
  • After calving, plan to move cow-calf pairs to clean pasture to minimize health risk.

This is the November excerpt of Beef Cow Herd Planning Calendar, ANR-0968-A.

Health Tips

  • Watch for lice and treat as needed.
  • Remove any remaining insecticidal ear tags. Old tags release low levels of insecticide that tend to promote development of resistance.
  • Follow up on internal parasite control practices.

Forage & Nutrition Notes

  • Monitor body condition scores, and adjust nutritional program as needed.
  • Modify winter supplementation based on forage analysis information, availability, and herd nutritional requirements.
  • Implement management intensive grazing systems on stockpiled tall fescue and bermudagrass.
  • Begin monitoring for cool-season annual weed pressure as cool-season forages begin to grow.
  • Conduct a forage analysis on stored hay, baleage, and silage before feeding to develop an accurate supplemental strategy.

Winter Calving Herd

  • Check weaned calves regularly for health problems.
  • Separate bred heifers from the cows, and provide adequate nutrition.

Spring Calving Herd

  • Perform a pregnancy check on cows/heifers and cull cows/heifers based on pregnancy status, soundness, health, and performance.
  • Implement calf preconditioning programs including vaccinations, weaning strategies, and bunk breaking.
  • Select replacement heifers and permanently identify them.
  • Wean calves, if not already weaned, depending on pasture conditions and marketing plans.
  • Wean calves depending on pasture conditions and marketing plans. After weaning, cull cows based on pregnancy status, soundness, health, and performance.
  • Deworm calves at weaning.

Fall Calving Herd

  • Tag, castrate, dehorn, and implant calves as soon as practically possible. Do not implant replacement heifers.
  • Provide good nutrition for lactating cattle approaching breeding.
  • Make sure your bull is ready for breeding season by having a breeding soundness exam done 60 days before the breeding season.
  • For artificial insemination programs, have ample semen and supplies on hand. Schedule for estrus synchronization programs, and reserve an artificial insemination technician.

 

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