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University of Missouri Extension
Published: Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2013
Rod Geisert, 573-884-5508
SPICKARD, Mo. – Cow herd owners can learn to boost beef production at Thompson Farm Field Day, Sept. 17. That includes tips on breeding and feeding.
Research on cow and heifer reproduction is conducted at the University of Missouri farm in northwest Grundy County. Researchers will tell results of more cow pregnancies from Fixed Time Artificial Insemination (FTAI).
Rod Geisert, superintendent, says the event is open to the public. The day starts with registration at 8:30 a.m. and program at 9 a.m. Lunch will be served at noon. The day ends by 3 p.m. after wagon tours.
The Columbia-based MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, sponsors the event. Businesses will have displays.
First speaker, Jordan Thomas, MU graduate student, will tell results of a new AI protocol. The plan, not yet released, increases pregnancy rates on the first day of breeding season.
“High AI pregnancy rates result in more calves born early in the calving season,” Thomas says. “That in turn results in an older average age of calves at weaning. And, therefore heavier weights.”
Earlier studies at Thompson Farm show AI-sired calves have better genetics from use of proven, high-accuracy bulls. That improves replacement heifers and feedlot performance of steers.
Also, cows that calve early perform better in the next breeding season. This proves especially helpful for heifers.
“Successful reproduction management one year sets cows up for success next year,” Thomas says. He gained national attention for his research at the Beef Improvement Federation in Oklahoma City in June.
Neil Martin, recent graduate, will summarize AI research from Thompson Farm and private ranches.
The MU farm conducts research and extension, but also teaches students in animal science and veterinary medicine.
Other topics include preventing loss of early pregnancies, economic outlook for high-quality beef and hay feeding.
Mike Kasten, beef farmer, Millersville, Mo., was an early adopter of fixed-time AI. He gained value from Show-Me-Select replacement heifers. He’ll talk on “Quality Beef by the Numbers.”
Afternoon tours will show pregnancy checks by ultrasound. Dr. Scott Poock, MU Extension veterinarian, will show new equipment.
On a second tour, Ray Wright, from MU Bradford Farm, Columbia, will tell of grazing strategies and soils health.
Thompson Farm is located at the end of Highway C, seven miles west of Spickard, Mo. The Farm can be reached from Highway A off of Highway 136 from the north or off of Highway 65 north of Trenton, Mo.
MU’s CAFNR holds annual field days at its farms across the state.
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