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Animal Sciences and Industry

KSUBeef.org: Your resource for beef information


>> Watch Facebook live video of Calving School hosted on Jan. 23, 2020


Preparing for calving season

by Sandy Johnson, Extension Beef Specialist, Colby, KS

The checklist below is designed to help you plan and prepare to improve the success of your calving season and weaned calf crop.

• Balance cow rations for adequate protein and energy for increased third trimester and subsequent lactation requirements. Group and feed cows by body condition and age to the degree possible. Target body condition for first calf heifers at calving of 5.5 to 6 and 5 to 5.5 for mature cows.
• Develop sound vaccination program to prepare the cow to produce high quality colostrum.
• Control lice and internal parasites.
• Plan for recording calving data and consider ways to backup records.
• Make sure calving facilities are clean and in good repair
• Plan for ear tags, tattoos, scale or weight tape, banding or castration.
• Check flashlights and other quality portable light sources.
• Check-list for calving assistance. >> Continue reading

KSU Winter Ranch Management Series

Profit enhancing strategies included in the topics for the 2020 Kansas State University Winter Ranch Management Seminar Series. Hosted at five sites across the state of Kansas, the meetings will feature presentations and comments by extension educators to enhance management and marketing strategies employed by cow-calf producers.

The meetings will also feature a popular "town hall" style question-and-answer session between Kansas cattle producers and extension specialists. "The series has a history of being a successful stretch of meetings, which are hosted throughout the state of Kansas," says Bob Weaber, K-State extension cow-calf specialist. Weaber, along with other state, district and local extension staff, will take part in the series to help answer producers' questions. The specialists will answer a wide range of questions on beef cattle issues including animal health, nutrition, management, genetics and reproduction.

"The previous year's variable and wet weather across Kansas presented many challenges for farmers and ranchers. Our extension team continues to field questions from beef producers related to environmental effects and their impact on cow herd performance, especially reproduction," Weaber explains. "The Winter Ranch Management series provides another great opportunity for state and local specialists to take our expertise out in the country for a series of impactful face-to-face meetings. Our extension team has a breadth of experience in beef cattle management, reproduction, genetics, animal health and nutrition. We're here to help solve and prevent production problems with reliable information."

Topics to be discussed at each location include a discussion on the value captured in the marketplace from improved production practices by cow-calf producers and understanding pregnancy loss. Local extension agents will present a topic focused on forage sampling and testing or proper handling and storage of vaccines.

"Early in the year is a great time for producers to think and plan for the coming year," says Weaber. "Many producers have a number of experiences in 2019 to reflect upon, so early in the year is a good time to consider opportunities to improve management practices that enhance profitability."

2020 Winter Ranch Management Locations/Contacts:

1. Ulysses

Hosted by: Grant, Stanton, Kearny, and Hamilton Co. Ext.
Date: Thursday, January 30, 2020; Noon – 3:30 p.m.
Location: Grant Co. Civic Center 1000 W. Patterson Ave Ulysses, KS
RSVP by January 23, 2020 to: Elizabeth Kissick, Grant Co. Extension 620-356-1721; emrogers@ksu.edu

2. Ashland

Hosted by: Clark, Comanche and Meade County Extension
Date: Thursday, January 30, 2020; 5:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Location: Clark Co. Fairgrounds 11th Avenue and Kentucky Street Ashland, KS 67831
RSVP by January 23, 2020 to: Kalee Krier, Clark Co. Extension 620-826-5307; krier@ksu.edu

3. Plainville

Hosted by: Twin Creeks, Golden Prairie, Midway and Phillips-Rooks Extension Districts
Date: Tuesday, February 11, 2020; Noon – 3:30 p.m.
Location: First State Bank 120 W. Mill St. Plainville, KS
RSVP by February 4, 2020 to: Rachael Boyle, Phillips-Rooks Ext. Dist. 785-425-6851; rboyle@ksu.edu

4. Mankato

Hosted by: River Valley, Central Kansas and Post Rock Ext. Districts
Date: Tuesday, February 11, 2020; 5:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Location: Mankato Community Center 214 N. High Street Mankato, KS
RSVP by February 4, 2020 to: Brett Melton, River Valley Ext. Dist. 785-243-8185; bmelton@ksu.edu Sandra Wick, Post Rock Ext. Dist. 785-282-6823; swick@ksu.edu

5. Yates Center

Hosted by: Southwind and Wildcat Extension Districts Greenwood and Coffey County Extension
Date: Thursday, February 27, 2020; 5:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Location: Woodson County 4-H 713 S. Fry. Yates Center, KS
RSVP by February 20, 2020 to: Dale Lanham, Southwind Ext. Dist. 620-625-8620; dlanham@ksu.edu

Meeting times and registration fees vary by location, but all will include a meal. Participants are asked to RSVP for a selected location by one week prior to the event. Interested participants should contact their local host contact for registration and RSVP details.

More information about the K-State Winter Ranch Management Seminar Series is available at KSUBeef.org.


KSU Cattlemen's Day

Kansas State University's Animal Sciences and Industry Department hosted Cattlemen's Day 2019 on Friday, March 1 at Weber Hall in Manhattan. Dr. Brad Morgan, Performance Food Group senior director of protein, kicked off the event by discussing the potential for plant-sourced "meat" and laboratory-produced "meat" to take market share from the meat industry. 




Tally Time: Management Minder outlines your production year

Technology has been developed that makes many things in our lives much easier. Some of you may remember when you were the “remote control” when your Dad was watching TV. Now, new homes have heating, alarm and lighting systems throughout that can be controlled remotely with a smart phone. Cattle producers use electronic IDs to automate many data collection activities. Computer applications seem to only be limited by our imagination.

Our beef extension educational efforts have often pointed out timely management topics. For example, now is the time to sample harvested forages and get an analysis of the quality. Some of those items would relate to time of year, while others would depend on the individual operation’s calving and breeding dates. So, while those suggestions are timely for most (we hope), they certainly do not fit everyone.

>> Read more


Focus Areas

The K-State beef extension team strives to address all phases of beef production from "farm to fork".


Upcoming Events

Winter Ranch Management Series

Jan. 30 Noon
Grant Co. Civic Center 
Ulysses, Kansas

Jan. 30 5:30 p.m.
Clark Co. Fairgrounds
Ashland, Kansas

Feb. 11 Noon
First State Bank
Plainville, Kansas

Feb. 11 5:30 p.m.
Mankato Community Center
Mankato, Kansas

Feb. 27 5:30 p.m.
Woodson County 4-H
Yates Center, Kansas

Advanced Beef Cattle Care & Health Training Program

Feb. 6 6:00 p.m.
Holton Livestock Exchange
Holton, KS

March 19 6:00 p.m.
Central Livestock of South Hutch
South Hutchinson, KS

March 24 6:00 p.m.
Fort Scott Livestock Market
Fort Scott, KS

April 9 6:00 p.m.
Mankato Livestock
Mankato, KS 


Tamegrass Stocker Field Day
Thursday, Feb. 20
Girard, KS

KSU Stockmen's Dinner
Thursday, March 5
Four Points by Sheraton
Manhattan, Kansas

KSU Cattlemen's Day
Friday, March 6
Weber Hall
Manhattan, Kansas

Ask the Experts

Contact information for KSU Beef extension team

Beef Genetics Team Website

K-State Newsletters

Animal Science Newsletter

Beef Tips

The Grazier

Focus on Feedlots

KSU ASI Facilities

Beef Cattle Research Center

Cow-Calf Unit

Purebred Beef Unit

Beef Stocker Unit


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