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The Big Show / county fair
« on: July 25, 2019, 04:25:42 PM »
The moderation movement, if there ever really was one, took a hit yesterday at our county fair.  Supreme Champion female was a 1700+ pound Simmental senior yearling.  She brought back memories of the ton plus junior yearling Angus heifers in Denver in the 80's.  First time in many, many years we couldn't show at the county fair.  The grandkids had basketball weight lifting and practice 6:30-9:30 Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, cross country 7:00-9:00 Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, and baseball from 2 or 3:00 in the afternoon until 10:00 or later, depending on where they play, at least 4 days a week.  Baseball practice on the rare days they don't have games.  I wonder what would happen if the Math teacher decided the kids needed to work on math Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for three hours per day all summer long.  I'll bet there would be a revolt.  But, since all our student-athletes will be playing for pay withing 5 years, I guess it's worth it to have zero time off to be a kid.

The Big Show / 1107 lb. weaning weight
« on: April 25, 2019, 01:45:47 PM »
I'm surprised I haven't seen any comments on SAV America, the Angus bull that set a new record with a 1,107 pound 205 day weaning weight.  85 lb. birth weight to 1,107 at 205 days is quite impressive.  I would imagine he weaned at over 1/2 his dam's weight!

The Big Show / eat less beef?
« on: November 28, 2018, 09:57:06 AM »
Last night as I was flipping through channels I came across an IPTV airing of a BBC newscast.  The tease was a video of Holsteins with Global Warming across the screen.  After some ridiculous commercial, the bit came on.  Another scientific study regarding a cow's bad gas has revealed that, taking into account all the machinery, transportation, processing, etc., eating 4 small pieces of chocolate contributes as much to global warming as driving your car 6 miles.  While showing what appeared to be a lunch meat sandwich, the narrator said that was equal to driving your car 12 miles.  A large plate of roast beef appeared on the screen, you'd have to be very, very hungry to eat that much, and it was announced that eating beef is the same as driving your car 30 miles.  The presentation ended with a video of more Holsteins with the narrator telling us "If you want to stop global warming, eat less of this" as the screen went to a large "Beef" sign near a grocery store meat counter.  Not the first claim of this kind I've seen, but it's been a while since I've seen one.  Perhaps the Beef Producers Association should show a video of the millions of cars on the freeway in California, pointing out their massive contribution to global warming.  Or, Heaven forbid, a video of Al Gore riding in his private jet to another global warming convention.  Will it solve the beef problem if we follow Al's suggestion and plant a tree?

Speaking of experts, during the Big Show on WHO radio yesterday afternoon, i listened to a National Weather Service forecaster predict that the winter in the Midwest will be warmer and drier than normal due to a small El Nino.  Last night, I read Progressive Farmer magazine and came across the following headline, "Shivers ahead."  "Minimal El Nino influence calls for cold winter in the central and eastern U.S."  We slept last night with the air conditioner on and an electric blanket.  We just couldn't tell if it was hot or cold.       

The Big Show / Home raised herd bulls
« on: October 24, 2018, 09:09:10 PM »
The bull in the tall grass is Oakview General, a son of Diamond Zulu 3Z r.  The spring calves sired by him are truly outstanding.  The roan bull in the lot is Oakview Leader 9-18, a grandson of Leader 9th and Deerpark Leader 18th.  He is most likely the most consistently easy calving bull we've used and the calves have quite a bit more eye appeal than those out of his sire.  I'll try to post some photos of the calves by each bull as soon as I can. 

The Big Show / bull sales
« on: September 20, 2018, 03:32:48 PM »
According to the Midwest Beef Producer September, 2018, issue, 33.13% of the 56,840 bull sales reported were sold by 10 producers.  48.141% of the bulls were sold by the top 20 producers.  Jorgenson Land and Cattle sold 7.013% of the bulls.  I guess the rest of us are pretty much inconsequential. 

The Big Show / feeding corn silage to cows
« on: August 21, 2018, 12:27:08 PM »
Any of you had recent experience feeding corn silage to cows?  We did it for many, many years, but it's been about 20 since we did it.  The corn is right here on the farm.  I will need to buy about 150 bales of hay otherwise and with the cost of hay, it seems to me it might be time to try silage again.  It seems as thought I spend a month of Sundays hauling hay.  Thanks for the info.

The Big Show / Iowa's cow herd
« on: April 03, 2018, 03:36:02 PM »
A month ago or so I listened to WHO radio as farm show host Andy Peterson interviewed one of the candidates for governor.  Wanting to show he was a friend of agriculture, the candidate raved about the potential for massive growth potential of the cow-calf industry in the state.  He said we way underutilized our land, if we only used it more efficiently we could turn Iowa into one of the leading cow states in the country.  He went on to say that the best way to utilize our farm ground was to put turnips or rye in after the harvest of the corn or beans and graze the cattle on them all winter.  Winter feed costs would be drastically reduced.  I thought of at least a few problems with his proposal.  In central Iowa at least, it is difficult to harvest the grain early enough to allow the turnips or rye enough time to grow adequately for sufficient grazing.  If you grow seed corn or very early maturing soybeans, the cover crop could allow some grazing, but not a very high percentage of the farmers in our area do that.  The snow fall can also limit grazing to some extent.  The biggest problem in our area is that there are absolutely no fences.  You can drive for miles and not find a fence.  Realistically, I can't think of anyone in our area who harvests seed corn, plants a cover crop, and wants to build a mile of fence to run cows.  Most of the farmers in our area no longer have livestock simply because they prefer driving a tractor as opposed to the day to day management of a livestock enterprise.  Andy asked to candidate where the cows would go in the summer at the end of the interview.  He replied that the farmer could build a hoop building and basically dry lot the cows.  Now there's a novel idea.  Graze the cows all winter and put them in a shed for the summer. 

The Big Show / weather influence on calf birth weights
« on: April 03, 2018, 03:20:55 PM »
I have long believed that spring born calves following colder than normal winters were larger at birth than those born after warmer winters.  I have also observed that my fall born calves were significantly smaller at birth than their similarly bred spring counterparts.  Check out the article in Minnesota's Midwest Beef Producer magazine, "Does the severity of winter temperatures have an impact on spring born calf birth weights?".  Official university research amazingly backs up the claim.  The University of Nebraska study focused on spring born calves, showing a 1:1 relationship between the drop in average temperature and the birth weight of calves.  Regarding fall borns, Oklahoma State research showed that fall born calves averaged 4.5 pounds lighter at birth than the spring born calves.  Nice to see that official research validates what we think we have experienced for years.  Could there be some validity to the claim that Canadian born calves are heavier at birth than they would be if they were born in Missouri, for example?  We may never know until official University research backs it up.  To solve all my problems, I'm going to breed for all fall calves and maintain the cows in southern Arkansas until a week before they calve. 

The Big Show / world events
« on: September 28, 2017, 10:32:51 AM »
Does anybody really care if there's ever another NFL game?  Is anyone really surprised there's cheating in college basketball?  Does it seem a little strange that a fight breaks out at one of those "mellow out" stands on a college campus? (and a "mellow out" leader is arrested?)

The Big Show / Angus Semen Codes
« on: June 21, 2017, 01:34:24 PM »
Just wondering if anyone knew the bulls associated with these codes:  7AN264, 7AN243, Net Worth, 7AN253, 7AN207, 7AN258, 141 1947 (141 is a little worn), 7AN213, 49AN2179, AN0175, 90AN4738.  I'll be getting an inventory soon, just wondering what's in the tank.

The Big Show / ASA genetic tests
« on: February 22, 2017, 11:25:44 AM »
I just received my official ASA genetic test results today for the bred heifer I had consigned to the Iowa Beef Expo.  There's good news and bad news.  The bad news is I did not take her to the sale, held 8 days ago, because the TH, PHA, and DS test results were not completed on time.  I will not sell one if I don't know the defect status.  The good news is that she was, as I expected, triple clean.  The other good news is that she is one outstanding female and my grandson will have lots of fun showing her as a cow/calf pair.  He didn't want me to sell her, anyway.  I'm not complaining about the length of time it takes to get test results.  I had many, many opportunities to pull a hair sample since we spent lots of time last year working her hair and preparing her for the shows we attended.  It was my own fault that they were not sent in earlier.  I guess I am using this forum to advise others to send in your samples far, far in advance of the sale.  I would not expect results in any less than 45 days and will certainly send in samples at least 60 days in advance in the future.  Not having the test results prior to the sale cost me some money.  Of course it is my opinion, but the bred heifer we consigned is one outstanding female and I believe would have sold well.  It won't bother me, though, to have another great producing Zulu daughter in the herd.  I have been told that results from the "other testing lab" are received in a week or less, but the ASA will not put them on the pedigrees.  Is this true?

The Big Show / Oakview General 507Z
« on: June 08, 2016, 12:16:48 PM »
It sure makes me happy to use a bull I think is going to work on my cows and get something like this! Oakview General 507Z (Diamond Zulu x Oakview Lace 303J). Triple clean. Zulu sure works on Trump line females.

The Big Show / Texas Shorthorn sale
« on: April 25, 2016, 09:19:29 AM »
Has anybody seen a catalog or information regarding the Texas Shorthorn Association on line sale?  The only thing I can find is the date, April 30.  Is it still on?  It's still listed on the Cattle in Demand site, but there is no sale listing or other information.

The Big Show / Grass fed beef
« on: August 25, 2015, 02:21:32 PM »
I had an interesting conversation with a person from Northeast Iowa at the state fair last weekend.  He wanted to know if Shorthorns would work in a grass fed beef operation.  He is currently using Simmental-Angus crosses and is having much difficulty getting the cattle to hang the carcasses he wants.  No marbling, among other things.  I told the gentleman that I felt they were several Shorthorn options out there that would work in a grass fed beef program, particularly some of the older, native genetics still available.  He is looking for information from those who use Shorthorn genetics in their grass fed beef operation.  If you can help, please email and I'll forward his information to you. 

The Big Show / Zulu calves (Updated)
« on: August 16, 2015, 08:12:28 PM »
A couple of Zulu calves.  Both are out of full sisters, Big Jake daughters out of a Primo cow.  Both sired by Zulu. 

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