Beef Quality Assurance certification set for Jan. 8 in Medina
A Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) certification training program will be held at
the Medina American Legion on Jan. 8, 2014, from 1 to 4 p.m.
The Beef Quality Assurance certification is a producer-driven program in which
cattle producers assume responsibility for producing beef that is a healthy,
wholesome, high-quality product and free from defects such as injection-site
lesions and bruises.
Producers in BQA programs keep detailed records to assure that their management,
husbandry and animal health practices meet regulatory and industry standards.
To become certified, producers must attend a training and certification session.
After attending a session, each producer or operation will be assigned a North
Dakota BQA identification number. If calves are produced following NDBQA
certification requirements and with the appropriate records kept, they may be
marketed as NDBQA certified.
In some areas, producers receive a premium for their BQA certified cattle.
BQA certification trainings began in 1999 in North Dakota. Since that time, more
than 1,950 producers have been certified. These producers market about 20
percent of the state’s feeder calves each year.
The cost for attending the training and receiving a three-year BQA certification
is $15. Preregistration is required. To register, contact the Extension
Service’s Kidder County office at (701) 475-2632, ext. 9227, or email
NDSU shares beef cattle research results
Beef cattle diets, breeding systems, drylot vs. pasture cow-calf production,
forage digestibility enhancements, grazing and effects of pen bedding were among
the topics North Dakota State University researchers studied in the past year.
In a project comparing lactating beef cows fed a diet of corn stover and
distillers grain, an ethanol production byproduct, with cows fed corn silage,
wheat middlings, barley hulls and straw, researchers at the Carrington Research
Extension Center found that:
* Calves of cows on the stover-distillers grain diet gained 2.73 pounds per day
during the 92-day study while calves of cows fed the other diet gained 2.57
pounds per day.
* The decrease in cows’ condition score during the summer feeding period was
nearly identical (1.1 for cattle on the stover-distillers grain diet vs. 1 for
cows on the other diet).
* The daily ration cost for the stover-distillers grain diet was $1.71, compared
with $2.22 for the other diet.
“Cow numbers continue to decrease in North Dakota and nationally as a result of
drought, grazing land being converted to cropland and the high cost of
conventional feed ingredients, yet underutilized and undervalued feed resources
such as corn stover and distillers grains are available to producers in North
Dakota,” says animal scientist Vern Anderson, who led this study.
“Our past research indicates beef cows are capable of using a wide variety of
feeds, including crop residues (corn, wheat, pea, barley, straw, regrowth or
cover crops) when properly supplemented,” he adds. “This study indicates diets
formulated with corn stover and nutrient-dense supplements such as distillers
grain can be very successful in supporting excellent growth and performance in
the cow and her calf.”
Researchers from the Animal Sciences Department and Hettinger and Central
Grasslands Research Extension Centers conducting a breeding study found that:
* About the same number of cows exposed to estrous synchronization (ES) and
artificial insemination (AI) became pregnant during the breeding season as cows
mated with bulls.
* Cows in the breeding system with ES and AI gave birth earlier in the caving
season than cows mated with bulls.
* Calves born through AI during the first 21 days of the calving season were
19.4 pounds heavier at weaning than the calves of cows mated with bulls.
In a study on whether the degree of processing for dry-rolled corn had an effect
on steers fed finishing diets, Animal Sciences Department researchers discovered
that processing didn’t affect the steers’ initial or final body weight, average
daily gain, dry-matter intake or carcass quality characteristics such as 12th-
rib fat thickness, rib-eye area and marbling score.
The study also looked at the impact on those steers of including dried corn
distillers grains plus solubles (DDGS) in their diets. The researchers learned
that the steers’ dry-matter intake and feed-to-gain ratio decreased as the
amount of DDGS in their diet increased, but including DDGS didn’t affect the
carcass quality characteristics.
In addition, the researchers found that processing the corn and adding DDGS had
some impact on the steers’ feeding and ruminating behavior. For example, steers
fed finely rolled corn ate more meals per day, and spent more time eating and
less time drinking. The size of the meals the steers ate decreased, but their
eating rate per meal and per minute increased as the amount of DDGS included in
their diet increased.
“This information shows that changing the feeding management program can impact
animal growth and efficiency,” says Kendall Swanson, an Animal Sciences
Department associate professor who led this research. “More work is necessary to
fine-tune the time-of-day feeding work to optimize feed intake and growth.”
For more information about these studies, as well as other NDSU beef cattle and
range research, see the “2013 North Dakota Beef Report” at
Precision Agriculture Summit set for Jamestown Jan. 20-21
The Red River Valley Research Corridor has scheduled the third annual Precision
Agriculture Summit at the Farmers Union Conference Center in Jamestown on Jan.
The Precision Agriculture Summit is organized by the Red River Valley Research
Corridor, North Dakota Farmers Union, Lake Region State College’s Dakota
Precision Ag Center and North Dakota State University’s Department of
Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering.
John Nowatzki, NDSU Extension Service agricultural machine systems specialist,
is collaborating with others to plan the summit and will be moderating crop
precision technology sessions.
“The summit is intended to be an opportunity for sharing precision agriculture
research, technology and needs among farmers, industry, consultants and
university personnel,” Nowatzki says. “The 2014 summit agenda includes
concurrent crop and livestock precision technology tracks. Parts of the agenda
are arranged for both tracks to come together for presentations applying to all
areas of precision agriculture.”
The main agenda focuses on new trends in precision agriculture technology, such
as Google Glass, unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and the economics of precision
agriculture. Presenters from Boeing Corporation and Trimble Navigation will
discuss their work with unmanned aircraft systems in agriculture.
Topics and presenters include:
* Google Glass precision agricultural applications – Jeff Caldwell,
Agriculture.com and Successful Farming magazine multimedia editor, and Bruce
Rasa, Inventive Branding managing consultant
* Macro and micro economics of current precision agriculture technologies –
Craig Smith, Fort Hayes State University, and David Roberts, NDSU assistant
* UAS applications in crop and livestock production – Kevin Price, Kansas State
* North Dakota UAS roadmap to establish a test site for the integration of
unmanned systems into the national airspace – Bob Becklund, Northern Plains
Unmanned Systems Authority executive director
* Overview of available UAS equipment and services – Ryan Jensen, HoneyComb UAS,
and Mitchel Fiene, DMZ Aerial
* Available cameras and sensor technologies for use on UAS – David Dvorak, Field
* Moderator for the livestock precision agriculture track agenda – J.W
Schroeder, NDSU Extension diary specialist
* Michigan animal tracking system – Daniel Buskirk, Michigan State University
beef cattle nutrition specialist
* Use of electronic animal sensors for making comparisons of animal lying,
temperature and rumination and the use of 3D cameras to measure feed intake and
animal body conditions -Amanda Sterrett, University of Kentucky graduate
* Current technology in cattle genetics – Lauren Hanna, NDSU Animal Sciences
* Cattle reproduction technologies – Carl Dahlen, NDSU Extension beef cattle
* Automated milking and feeding systems for cattle – James Salfer, University of
Minnesota Extension educator
* Dealing with soil variability – Dave Franzen, NDSU Extension Service soil
* Accounting for soil salinity in zone management – Abbey Wick, NDSU Extension
soil health specialist and assistant professor
* Optical reflectance sensing of soil variability – Ken Sudduth, U.S. Department
of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service
* Current status and future trends in precision pesticide applications – Erdal
Ozkan, Ohio State University Extension
Speakers from commercial companies will discuss current services for making
detailed crop prescription maps and precision sprayer technology. The agenda
includes presenters from Monsanto, WinField Solutions, Pioneer, Hagie, Titan
Machinery and John Deere.
Sreekala Bajwa, NDSU Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Department chair,
will conclude the summit with a presentation titled “A Systems Approach to
Precision Ag in North Dakota Today and Tomorrow.”
For more information or to register, visit the Red River Valley Research
Corridor website at theresearchcorridor.com/precisionagsummit2014 or
contact Ryan Aasheim at (701) 499-6994 or email email@example.com.