Hereford eNews
Hereford Highlights | Market Update | Industry Insight Volume 4, Issue 10
Welcome{IF ISEMPTY [Name] THEN "" ELSE ", " END IF} {IF ISEMPTY [Name] THEN "" ELSE [Name] END IF}{IF NOT ISEMPTY [Name] THEN ", " ELSE " " END IF} to Hereford eNews, your source of the most current news affecting Hereford breeders. We aim to focus on newsworthy events pertaining to the Hereford seedstock industry. Sponsored by the American Hereford Association (AHA). Information sent to subscribers comes from material available on or authored by AHA, Hereford World and Certified Hereford Beef (CHB) LLC staff.
Rockin' W Polled Herefords Ad
Hereford Highlights

One Sale, Hundreds of Herefords

Breeders and commercial producers consigned approximately 1,200 Hereford and Hereford-influenced calves to the Annual North Dakota Hereford Feeder Calf Sale, Feb. 21, at Kist Livestock Auction in Mandan, N.D.

The sale has been in existence for 10-plus years, says Steven Pollestad, consignor and sale contact from Halliday, N.D. Pollestad started consigning to the sale several years ago, hauling his cattle more than 100 miles to Kist. “I can bring in a smaller number of steers, and still sell them for a good price,” he says.

Some consignors come from an even greater distance, up to 200 miles away, to participate in this marketing opportunity.

Pollestad explains that the sale is not only a marketing opportunity for individual producers, but also for the breed. For the last two years, organizers have set up a table in the sale barn with Hereford promotional materials, North Dakota Hereford directories, breeder flyers, etc. They’ve also hung up Hereford posters throughout the sale barn.

To top off the Hereford offering this year, Certified Hereford Beef® hot beef sandwiches were served in the sale barn cafe.

The Hereford sale is hosted on a normal sale day, so more than 3,000 cattle of other breeds were also marketed on Feb. 21. The Hereford and Hereford-crosses received competitive prices. Appropriately, top-quality Herefords saw market-topping prices. More than 600 head sold into Hereford-specific branded beef programs.

“I think it’s a big success,” says Jim Williams, CHB LLC vice president of supply. He commends organizers for their cooperative efforts to bring together the large numbers that feeders demand.

Pollestad says that Kist has helped a lot in getting buyers to the sale, and that organizers also rely on as an advertising tool.

Consignments must be at least 50% Hereford; about 75% of the sale offering has typically been straightbred Herefords.

The third Wednesday of February each year is the date for this special Hereford sale; contact Pollestad for more information at (701) 938-4648.

CHB LLC President Brings Passion to the Plate

Fellow board members elected Bill Cox, Pomeroy, Wash., as the 2007 CHB LLC president. Cox has served on the CHB LLC and American Hereford Association (AHA) boards since 2004, and will now focus primarily on issues related to marketing the CHB brand.

As a passionate Hereford breeder, Cox is especially excited to help advance a brand that creates demand for Hereford genetics. More than 37.9 million lb. of CHB were sold in fiscal year 2006, creating pull demand for 465,261 head of commercial Hereford cattle.

For the rest of the story, visit

Past AHA President Named Stockman of the Year

Jack Vanier, Brookville, Kan., was honored as the 2007 Stockman of the Year at the 37th Annual Stockmen's Dinner, March 1, in Manhattan, Kan. The event is hosted by the board of directors of the Livestock and Meat Industry Council and Kansas State University (K-State) department of animal sciences and industry.

Vanier owns CK Ranch, which was established in 1933 by his father, J.J. Vanier. After graduating from K-State, Vanier completed his military duty during the conflict in Korea. He then returned in 1953 to the central Kansas ranch that became the largest registered Hereford ranch in the world. The Vanier family enjoyed much success in the showring as well as in the sale ring. Vanier now oversees commercial ranches in Colorado, Wyoming, Oklahoma and several locations in Kansas.

Vanier has held various leadership positions in the livestock industry including president of the AHA and Kansas Livestock Association, as well as director of the National Cattlemen’s Association.

When the family’s Gooch Milling Co. sold to Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) in 1970, Vanier served on the ADM board of directors from 1978-2004.

Hop Dickenson, Overland Park, Kan., former AHA executive vice president; Michael Dockterman, Chicago, Ill.; and Pat Koons, Lakin, Kan., were part of the induction ceremony that honored Vanier with stories that painted a picture of his dedication to the livestock industry.

Rex Daniels & Sons Consigns Champion Over All Breeds

Congratulations to Rex Daniels & Sons, Malad City, Idaho, for consigning the champion bull over all breeds in the Annual Fallon All Breeds Bull & Heifer Sale, Feb. 17, in Fallon, Nev. RD Devo 572 was named champion Hereford bull and then selected as the champion over six other breed winners as well. Devo was also the high-selling Hereford bull, selling for $3,000 to Willow Stay Ranch, Minden, Nev. He is a son of Allen 23C Devo 7.

Hereford Breeders Raise Money for “Water for Life”

England Ranch, Prineville, Ore., and BB Cattle Co., Connell, Wash., each donated a bull to be sold at the 66th Red Bluff Bull & Gelding Sale in Red Bluff, Calif., Jan. 23-27, with proceeds going to Water for Life Inc.

Water for Life is a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting and promoting agricultural water rights while advocating responsible stewardship of the land.

The England family — Dick, Mary, Jim and Jon — donated an embryo transfer son of CL1 Domino 8164H. The coming 2-year-old sold to Northern California Farm Credit for $9,200 and was donated back to be sold again. Tree Top Ranches, Princeton, Ore., then purchased the bull for $3,700.

The Bennett family — Bill, Norma, Joe, Leslie, Jay, Jolene, Traci and Whitney — donated an Angus bull sired by SAF Connection. He sold for $5,000 to Western Stockman’s Market, McFarland, Calif.; Five Star Land and Livestock, Wilton, Calif.; Tehama Angus Ranch, Gerber, Calif.; Camp Cooley Ranch, Franklin, Texas; and Oak Ridge Angus, Calistoga, Calif. The group of buyers then donated the bull back to be sold again, this time to Dale Wyatt, Alderpoint, Calif., for $3,350.

Together, these donators and buyers raised $21,250 for Water for Life!

Hereford 101: Expert Advice on AI and Synchronization

The next Hereford 101 is scheduled for March 22 at 7 p.m. Dave Patterson, state Extension beef reproduction specialist at the University of Missouri-Columbia, will join Jack Ward, AHA chief operating officer and director of breed improvement, to discuss the importance of AI. Included will be information on synchronization practices that can enhance AI results.

Visit for participation information, or contact Ward at (816) 842-3757 or

Make Sure You’re in the Hereford Handbook

Hereford Publications Inc. (HPI) has sent letters to state Hereford and women’s association secretaries to request information for the Hereford Handbook in July’s Hereford World. By submitting your association’s leadership and event information, you ensure that Hereford World readers are accurately informed of your state’s activities. If you are the secretary of your association, and did not receive such a letter, please fill out the appropriate form linked below and submit by March 15 via fax, e-mail or mail, using the following contact information:

(816) 842-6931, Attn: Christy Benigno
Mailing address:
American Hereford Association
Attn: Christy Benigno
P.O. Box 014059
Kansas City, MO 64101

2007 State Association Directory Form (PDF)
2007 State Women’s Association Directory Form (PDF)

Join Fellow Hereford Enthusiasts at the JNHE — July 7-14

The “Western States Hereford Breeders” along with various state junior Hereford associations invite you to attend the 2007 Junior National Hereford Expo (JNHE), “A Hereford Celebration.” This year’s junior extravaganza is July 7-14 at the National Western Complex.

Rooms at the JNHE headquarters hotels — Renaissance Denver Hotel and Doubletree Hotel Denver — are sold out. Other room blocks have been reserved at the Courtyard Denver Stapleton (across the street from the Renaissance), (303) 333-3303, and the Radisson Hotel Denver Stapleton Plaza (next door to the Renaissance), (303) 321-3500. There are a limited number of hotel rooms in the area, so it is recommended that you make your reservation soon. The reservation cutoff date is June 1. Ask for the Junior National Hereford Expo rate.

Junior Associations – Contact Info Needed!

The AHA youth activities department needs current officer information for all state junior associations with complete addresses and telephone numbers. You may also want to include e-mail addresses for your officers and advisors if available. To ensure that your state receives mailings about important summer activities, complete and mail the form linked below or e-mail the information to Chris Stephens at

Officers and Directors Form (Word)

Summer and Regional Junior Shows Fast Approaching

If you are planning a summer or regional junior show, details must be submitted to the AHA as soon as possible. Please complete and mail the form linked below or e-mail the information to

Show Information Form (Word)

American Cowman Ad
Market Update

Cattle Outlook
Glenn Grimes and Ron Plain, University of Missouri-Columbia

Grimes and Plain offer market updates for the week past each Friday afternoon. To view this information, visit the University of Missouri AgEBB Web site.

JWR Land & Cattle Co. Ad
Industry Insight

Cold Weather May Increase Calf Birth Weights
John Hall, Virginia Tech Department of Animal & Poultry Science

No sooner did I mention that the winter has been warmer, yet still stressful, than we were hit with almost 30 days of below average temperatures. Producers have often speculated that calves are bigger after cold winters. Is this really true? Often it is hard to compare one year to the next as bulls and nutrition change, which can affect calf birth weight. However, several studies indicate that exposure of dams to cold conditions can result in increased birth weights of offspring.

The research

Some of the early work in this area was with sheep. Shearing ewes before they lamb is a common practice to reduce soiling of wool, make it easier for lambs to nurse and reduce space needed in lambing sheds. Researchers have noted that lambs from winter-shorn ewes are heavier at birth and are more vigorous than lambs from unshorn ewes.

Properly conducted research on weather effects on birth weight in cattle is limited. However, in the 1990s researchers from Nebraska conducted a study on birth weight and dystocia as affected by winter weather. For six years, data was collected from March-calving heifers of similar breeding that were all bred AI to the same calving-ease Angus bull. The research group kept track of average and wind chill temperatures from December-February of each year. All calves were weighed and any heifers requiring assistance were noted. Birth weights were heaviest and calving difficulty greater in the coldest years. Researchers found almost a 1:1 relationship between decrease in average temperature and increase in calf birth weight. For every 1-degree (Fahrenheit) drop in average or wind chill temperature there was roughly a 1-lb. increase in calf birth weight.

One of the years did not seem to fit. The winter of ’95-’96 was relatively warm, but calf weights and dystocia increased. When researchers reviewed the weather data, they found that January of ’96 was much colder than average. Therefore, they concluded that this one month in late gestation was sufficient enough to affect birth weight.

Why does birth weight increase?

One theory behind increased birth weights of offspring from cold-exposed dams relates to blood flow. It is well established that when exposed to extremely cold temperatures, mammals shift blood flow from extremities and skin to major internal organs. This survival mechanism ensures that essential organs (brain, heart, liver) continue to function normally even in cold weather. As a result of this shift in blood flow, there may be greater blood flow and nutrients reaching the fetus. However, short-term cold exposure in women has actually been shown to decrease blood flow to the fetus.

Another theory is that voluntary feed intake is increased in dams exposed to cold. While ruminants can compensate to some extent by increasing intake during cold weather, this probably does not explain all the increase in birth weight.

More recently, several groups have found metabolic changes in cold-stressed ewes. These metabolic changes result in increased availability of glucose, IGF-I and IGF-II to the fetus. Glucose and the two insulin-like growth factors (IGF) are important regulators of fetal growth. Some studies also indicate an increase in brown adipose tissue, the fat that is used in the first days of life to produce heat, in newborns. Increased size, enhanced energy availability and greater brown adipose tissue are positively correlated to newborn calf survival during cold weather.

Management of heavier calves

For mature cows, the increase in birth weight of 5-8 lb. caused by cold weather results in little increase in dystocia. However, producers should be aware of increased birth weights and the potential for problems. If extremely large birth weights occur, then cows should be checked more often.

First-calf heifers will need more observation and close attention this calving season. Producers should be prepared to check animals or render assistance if heifers appear to be struggling or have been in Stage 2 labor (hard pushing) for 30-45 minutes. Make sure that heifers are well-dilated and be sure the calf is of deliverable size. Don’t be afraid to call the veterinarian if needed; the value of a live calf is worth the vet call. But remember, if you have worked half the night trying to pull the calf, don’t expect the vet to perform a miracle and deliver a live calf — call early.

Under no circumstances should producers reduce feed levels or amount of energy in late-gestation diets in an attempt to reduce calf birth weight. Reducing energy intake will cause weak calves and thin cows. In addition, thin cows will have poor conception rates in the following breeding season.


If you know of someone who would be interested in receiving Hereford eNews please submit their email address to

You have the right to unsubscribe from this list at any time. If you would like your name excluded from future mailings of this news update, please reply to this e-mail with the word "REMOVE" in the subject line. If you have questions about this service or if you would like to give us an opinion or suggestion regarding its usefulness, content, recommendations for improvement, etc., we would like to hear from you. To let us know what you have to say, simply send an email to For more information about the purpose of this electronic news update, read our privacy statement.