Beef Buzz News
Momma Cows Could Still be Showing Effects of February's Brutal Cold Says OSU's Mark Johnson
Fri, 16 Apr 2021 08:03:41 CDT
The lingering impact of Februaryís brutal cold may still be evident in cow herds said Dr. Mark Johnson, OSU Associate Professor of Animal Science and supervisor of the OSU Purebred Beef Cattle Center.
Ron Hays Beef Buzzes With Dr. Mark Johnson
During an interview with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays, Johnson said he is concerned about the condition of our momma cows who suffered through periods of below zero weather.
I think the big thing is they required additional feed as they were living through so much cold weather, they were going to need extra feed, Johnson said.
It is certainly possible some cows could be a little thinner and poor in nutrition than what we would normally see this time of year, Johnson said.
I encourage producers to look at that on a herd by herd basis, he said.
All that cold weather no doubt was hard on cows, especially if they were nursing baby calves, Johnson said. It lasted long enough that it could have sapped some body energy reserves out of them, he added.
The OSU animal scientist said calves born during that brutal cold stretch might need some extra attention now.
Itís always a good idea to get a first round of vaccines into those calves, he said.
Those February calves experienced a tremendous amount of stress on their lungs and respiratory system, he said.
If they made it through the cold weather and initially warmed up, thatís when we are hearing stories about a significant amount of calf loss, he said.
If they seem healthy and hardy then I would say they are on track and we need to keep them on track with good management, Johnson said.
Hopefully this is a once in a lifetime event, but we always want to plan ahead and that means having plenty of hay and shelter available before severe weather arrives, he said.
All we can ever do is use good management and plan ahead and realize that each winter we want to have some hay and feed in reserve, Johnson added.
Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear more of Ronís interview with Dr. Mark Johnson.
The Beef buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for todayís show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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