At the 2024 CattleCon held in Orlando, Florida, Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster Ron Hays had the chance to talk with Daniel Tracy of Zoetis about navigating the rebuilding of the cowherd.
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“The consideration we need to make is there is a lot depending on these heifers because they make up the history of the herd moving forward,” Tracy said. “They set the pace of the herd moving forward, so we want to select heifers more towards the beginning of the calving season because we know they stay in the herd longer. We know their offspring outperform reproductively, and on the steer end, production-wise, too.”
Tracy emphasized the value of taking advantage of new technologies, such as genomics, to identify replacements earlier.
“Now the data is to where we have abilities now to be able to identify, even on the commercial side of things, traits we would like to carry forward in those heifers,” Tracy said.
For those who are unsure of where to start with utilizing genomic technology to advance the quality of their cow herd, Tracy said a veterinarian or a Zoetis representative is a great person to start that conversation with.
“We have something to be proud of, so when we have these technologies, we need to continue to move that forward, because that just increases the reliability and trustworthiness of our product,” Tracy said.
Tracy said the U.S. beef industry has a big reputation for holding when it comes to the safety and quality of the products American ranchers produce. As producers become more profitable and continue to make decisions regarding the efficiency of their herds, Tracy said it pays dividends for the future of the cattle industry in the U.S. to utilize the technologies to help with those decisions.
Zoetis has tools for commercial cattle producers who are interested in the genetics of heifers they are considering in rebuilding their herd. Learn more at beefgenetics.com.
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