Summer’s “dog days”are past, and as the calendar flips again, we move into one of my favorite times of year. Harvest and football rank high in the fall, but it’s important not to overlook calf vaccinations and pregnancy exams in your cow herd. By taking some time now for management, you can help extend your pasture and water situations for your financial advantage.
Ultrasounding can be a huge benefit to your operation. First, it allows you to find open cows early. Then, you can rid your herd of open cows and extend your pasture and water resources. Second, early pregnancy checks give you a huge economic advantage.
If it costs you $2/head/day to keep a cow with an average herd size of 200 head and a 10% open rate, you can save almost $1,200 per month simply by culling opens! That’s a substantial savings and a significant number to consider, especially with predictions of a long winter and dropping cattle market.
A good preconditioning and weaning vaccination program—along with proper nutrition—will boost your calves’ immunity to keep mortality and morbidity at a minimum. Sound preconditioning and weaning programs are routinely proven to increase your profitability.
Additionally, an implant and injectable wormer should be used. When calves are healthy and free of parasites, they grow faster and are more efficient. Of course, there’s also the cost savings to you when few calves are in the “sick” pen. Check out Pharmco’s 2015 Preconditioning/Weaning Protocol here.
You can decide afterward if you plan to keep your calves to background or sell them outright; either way, you’ll have prepared your herd for success. Stop in to any of our stores to get our latest recommendations for this fall.
If we can help you get a few more things done with your cattle before harvest, you’ll be able to relax a bit more and your herd will most likely endure less stress from weather and rushing. Our goal is to make things more efficient and more profitable for you!