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Updated: 2017-06-23T10:32:04Z


Iowa 4-H Announces Dairy Quiz Bowl Contest Results


The Iowa 4-H dairy quiz bowl competition was held June 15 in Arlington, Iowa. Forty-five youth competed in this educational contest conducted by Iowa State University Department of Animal Science and ISU Extension and Outreach.

Comfortable Cattle Provide Better Quality Beef, More Profit


Attendees at a recent cattle stewardship conference in northwest Iowa heard a common, simple message from speakers that when taken to heart can improve a farm’s economic bottom line: comfortable cattle perform better and consequently, are more profitable.


Applied Reproductive Strategies in Beef Cattle Workshop Set for late August in Kansas


The program is targeted toward commercial and seedstock producers, the artificial insemination and allied industries and veterinarians interested in using or improving implementation of reproductive management tools and associated genetic tools.

MANHATTAN, Kan. – Registration is now open for the 2017 Applied Reproductive Strategies in Beef Cattle Workshop set for Aug. 29-30 at the Hilton Garden Inn and Conference Center in Manhattan, Kan. The program is targeted toward commercial and seedstock producers, the artificial insemination and allied industries and veterinarians interested in using or improving implementation of reproductive management tools and associated genetic tools.

Kansas State University extension beef specialist Sandy Johnson is host for this annual meeting.

“Cow-calf producers know that reproduction is the most economically important trait,” Johnson said. “Thus, reproductive management choices and implementation are critical to profitability.”

Johnson also is a member of the Beef Reproduction Task Force, which includes reproductive physiologists from land grant universities who work together on reproductive management education. Garland Dahlke of Iowa Beef Center is an Iowa State University representative on the task force. The 2017 ARSBC program is provided through a joint effort of the Task Force and K-State Research and Extension.

This year's workshop contains segments focused on foundational principles, practical application of systems, nutritional components, bulls, systems and health and leveraging genetics. In total, this year’s program will bring 22 nationally recognized academics, industry personnel and producers to serve as speakers. Beyond attending the formal presentations, attendees will have opportunities to network with these speakers during breaks, meals and an evening discussion session. Graduate students with current research related to reproductive management will be invited to share posters of their current work.

The two-day program will run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 29 and 8 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, Aug. 30. After a steak dinner at the Stanley Stout Center Tuesday evening, discussion groups will continue to address questions from the day. An optional lab session will be held Wednesday afternoon.

Lab topics will include semen quality and handling, collecting and storing samples for DNA analysis, what happens after the DNA is collected, reproductive tract scoring and blood pregnancy tests and a look at technology for ultrasound diagnosis of pregnancy (not a how-to training). A variety of other tools and technology to help with AI programs will also be part of the lab session.

Together with the national Beef Reproduction Leadership Team, the Beef Reproduction Task Force works to promote wider adoption of reproductive technologies among cow-calf producers, educate cow-calf producers in management considerations that will increase the likelihood of successful AI breeding, and educate producers in marketing options to capture benefits that result from use of improved reproductive technologies.

The group’s mission is to optimize the productivity and improve the profitability of cow-calf operations by facilitating the adoption of cost-effective, applied reproductive technologies. The goal is to educate beef cattle producers on sustainable reproductive management systems to maintain U.S. leadership and competitiveness in the world beef market.

Those with questions on the workshop content can email Johnson at . Detailed information on registration, lodging and sponsorship opportunities is available on the workshop website.

Heat Mitigation Awareness and Strategies for Beef Producers


The rapid and extreme increase in temperatures may be an unwelcome change for some cattle.

AMES, Iowa –- Cattle producers should take notice of temperatures increasing above normal highs for this time of year. After a cool spring that may feel good to some, many cattle that have not adapted to warmer weather still have remnants of a winter hair coat. To those animals, the increasing temperature will be an unwelcome change.

Temperatures are expected to reach mid- to upper 90’s across Iowa this week. Although cattle should be able to tolerate this heat, it's a good reminder that more is yet to come and a cool spring may turn to a hot, dry summer.

"This early heat event is a good opportunity to make sure that mitigation strategies will be functional for the rest of the summer," said Dr. Grant Dewell, extension beef veterinarian with Iowa State University.  "Pay close attention to cattle this week as the rapid change in temperature may catch some at-risk cattle (cattle at end of feeding period, cattle with previous respiratory disease and cattle that have not shed out) dealing with excessive heat stress."
The Iowa Beef Center website has information and details on proper heat abatement strategies such as shade and sprinklers.

Check out these additional resources:

AgSploration Fills Need, Helps Create Ag Education in Northwest Iowa


A pair of educators stepped in to fill a void caused by a lack of agriculture education in northwest Iowa – and the results have been amazing. What began as a series of agriculture-related field trips has turned into a concerted effort to push students into agriculture careers at Iowa State University and elsewhere.

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Henry County Sets PQA and TQA Producer Sessions for June 6


Southeast Iowa producers who need PQAPlus or TQA certification soon should consider sessions set for June 6 at the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Henry County office.


Training Available to Become FSPCA Certified as a Preventive Controls Qualified Individual


The Iowa Grain Quality Initiative is now accepting registrations to become certified as a Preventive Controls Qualified Individual for the Food Safety Modernization Act. This three day course will be held Aug. 9-11 at the Scheman Building, Iowa State University campus, Ames, Iowa.


Celebrate June Dairy Month in Iowa


Many opportunities are available for families to learn about Iowa's dairy industry during June.


Newly Revised BRaNDS Software Available from Iowa Beef Center


The Iowa Beef Center has updated the BRaNDS ration balancing software. Owners of earlier versions of professional and standard editions can update at a low cost.


Online Tool Helps Farmers Target Ideal Alfalfa Feed Value


There is a better way than relying on calendar date to determine when to harvest the first alfalfa crop of the season due to climatic variations impacting alfalfa growth and development.