Rebuilding herds, marketing cattle discussed at Beefmaster Field Day
Beefmaster breeders gathered together on June 15, in Cassville, Mo., for the Cattleman’s Field Day sponsored by the Ozark and Heart of America Beefmaster Marketing Group, Central States Beefmaster Breeders Association and Berachiah Beefmasters. These three respective parties worked in cooperation with Beefmaster Breeders United to host the field day as an educational tool to local cattlemen and women who are current or potential Beefmaster breeders.
The topics for the field day involved discussion on rebuilding the cow herd after a drought and marketing feeder calves. University of Missouri Regional livestock specialist Andy McCorkill and Tom “Tonto” Kissee Jr., of Springfield Livestock Marketing Center, led the discussions. Both men said when marketing cattle in today’s market it is important to market uniformity through marketing non-paint colored and healthy cattle in order to receive a premium.
“A valuable piece of information I learned from the field day is that the main reason Beefmaster cattle get docked at the auction barns here in the mid-west is because of color, more specifically spots and paints. Kissee said if we would concentrate on making our cattle either solid red or solid black it would benefit us financially,” said Davin Vaughn, a Beefmaster breeder from Mount Vernon, Mo.
Kissee also informed attendees that a Beefmaster featured feeder calf sale was scheduled for November 2013 in Springfield, Mo.
McCorkill focused on the importance of pasture rotation during and after a drought. He discussed that it is important to keep replacement females based on structural soundness, longevity, fertility, docility and carcass attributes. He talked about how keeping updated working facilities and implementing the use of artificial insemination can benefit a breeder during drought conditions and when rebuilding a herd.
The discussion was followed by BBU executive vice president Tommy Perkins addressing the crowd on how the Beefmaster breed exceeds the characteristics that McCorkill discussed.
“It is evident that the six essentials that helped develop the Beefmaster breed are still essential in the cattle industry,” Perkins said. “Rebuilding your herd with Beefmaster females will provide soundness, longevity, fertility and countless more attributes. Their balanced performance and genetic diversity give you options in the direction you want to take your cattle program.”
The cattlemen and women in attendance were also educated on how to properly evaluate beef cattle and then they participated in a judging competition. The attendees evaluated three classes of registered Beefmaster animals and got a hands-on experience on how to select structurally sound animals when rebuilding their herds. The attendees also received information on the importance of semen handling, cow management and estrus synchronization in a herd. Tammie Wallace and Ashley Hoff with Genex of Strafford, Mo., used their mobile breeding barn to discuss various estrus synchronization protocols available for Beefmaster cattle A.I. programs.
“The Genex speakers reiterated what I read in the Beefmaster Cowman about the B-sync 5 day CIDR protocol for setting up American breeds of cattle. I will definitely try this protocol,” Vaughn said.
The field day also featured cowboy poet Gabe Pennell, door prizes and a Chuck Wagon style lunch.
“The field day was an outstanding educational opportunity for our breeders. Beefmaster Breeders United strives to provide field days, workshops and programs that enhance our breeder’s knowledge of the cattle industry,” said BBU field service representative Jason Bates. “We even provide ranch visits to our members to assist with cattle classification and consultation.”
For more information about Beefmaster Breeders United and its programs, contact the BBU office at 210-732-3132 or visit www.beefmasters.org.