Hereford eNews
Hereford Highlights | Market Update | Industry Insight Volume 4, Issue 31
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.
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Hereford Highlights

American Royal Heifer Sale Deadline Approaching

The Ladies of the Royal Sale consignment deadline is Saturday, Aug. 25. The sale is scheduled for Sat., Oct. 20, the day before the American Royal National Hereford Show. This sale is open to show heifer/brood cow prospects born on or after Sept. 1, 2006. Also Hereford steer prospects born Jan. 1, 2007, or after are eligible for this sale. Steer entries will be limited to seven.

For more information or to request an entry blank, contact Joe Rickabaugh at, (816) 218-2280 or (785) 633-3188. Entry deadline is Aug. 25.

HYFA Scholarship Applications due Sept. 1

Applications for Hereford Youth Foundation of America (HYFA) scholarships are due Sept. 1. Seven $2,500 scholarships and two $5,000 scholarships will be awarded to members of the National Junior Hereford Association (NJHA) to assist in financing their college education. These scholarships are made possible to NJHA members by Bill and Jo Ellard, EE Ranches Inc.; Bob and Dolores Call, CBY Polled Herefords; Lloyd Whitehead, Whitehead Ranches; Bob Kube, Fauquier Farms; Foundation Female donors and through contributions to the HYFA by numerous Hereford breeders.

The Gary Bishop Memorial Scholarship applications are also due Sept. 1. Two $1,500 scholarships are available to NJHA members.

Download HYFA scholarship application (Word)

Download Gary Bishop Memorial Scholarship application (Word)

Download B.C. Snidow Award application (Word)

For more information, contact Chris Stephens at (816) 842-3757 or

Juniors: Apply for OXO World Traveler Ambassador Scholarship

Hereford youth can apply for a $3,500 scholarship to use toward the air, hotel and land package to attend the 2008 World Hereford Conference. Any excess funds may be used for expenses on the trip.

Applicants must be 18 years or older on the day the World Hereford Conference trip begins, and not older than 26 years. Any boy or girl who has been or currently is a NJHA member is eligible.

Application deadline is Dec. 1, including two current photos of applicant, and a 750-word essay on why he or she would like to attend the World Hereford Conference. Essays need to be typewritten, double-spaced.

Should an emergency arise and the applicant cannot attend the conference, the award is cancelled and must be refunded to the OXO World Traveler Ambassador Scholarship fund. An alternate applicant will be chosen.

The award will be presented at the National Western Stock Show in Denver during a convenient time on show day. Winner will be notified two weeks in advance to allow for travel arrangements to Denver. For more details please contact Chris Stephens at (816) 842-3757 or

Preliminary travel schedule and World Hereford Conference details can be found at

Download OXO World Traveler Scholarship application (Word)

Buy Your HYFA “Harvest Gala” Tickets Early

Tickets are now available for the HYFA Harvest Gala, Sunday, Oct. 21, at the Clubhouse on Baltimore, located one block north of the Hilton President Hotel (American Hereford Association [AHA] Annual Meeting headquarters hotel), Kansas City, Mo. Cocktails will be served beginning at 6:30 p.m., with heavy hors d’ oeuvres and at 7 p.m. dinner will be served in the Tudor Room.

This fun evening will be highlighted with auction items and great entertainment. This is the premier fundraising event for the HYFA. You will not want to miss this exciting Hereford social event.

For more information or to purchase your tickets, please contact Mary Ellen Hummel at (816) 842-3757. Please Reply by Oct. 6 to ensure your reservation, as tickets will not be sold at the door. The ticket price is $50 per person.

All proceeds go to the HYFA, a not-for-profit corporation dedicated exclusively to scholarship and educational support of youth in the business of raising Hereford cattle. For additional information concerning the HYFA please contact, Chris Stephens at (816) 842-3757 or

Make Hotel Reservations Now for AHA Annual Meeting

The 2007 AHA Annual Meeting will be at the Hilton President Kansas City Hotel in Kansas City, Mo., at 9 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 22.

The purpose of this meeting is to elect new directors, hear special reports and conduct Association business. A complete schedule and annual meeting information will be included in the October Hereford World.

You can make reservations at the following hotels:

Hilton President Kansas City (Headquarters Hotel)
1329 Baltimore
Kansas City, MO 64105
(816) 221-9490 or (800) HILTONS (445-8667)
Rate: $119/night
Reservation cutoff date Sept. 17

Hotel Phillips
106 W. 12th St.
Kansas City. MO 64105
(800) 433-1426
Rate: $99/night
Reservation cutoff date Sept. 19

All reservations must be made on or before cutoff dates. Ask for the Hereford Association room block when making reservations.

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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.

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Industry Insight

Lower Weaning Stress
John Hall, Virginia Tech Department of Animal & Poultry Science

Weaning can be a stressful time for calves and beef producers. Feeders are willing to pay premiums for vaccinated and weaned calves. In our region, that premium averaged $25-$35 during the past 10 years. Recently, research and demonstrations have focused on low-stress weaning that keeps cows and calves in the same proximity. This reduces stress on the calves as well as stress on the owner.

Fence-line weaning

In this system, cows and calves are separated, but remain in adjacent pastures for seven to 14 days. Separation is maintained by high-tensile electric (preferred) or woven wire fence. After the fence-line weaning period cows and calves are completely separated out of sight of one another.

Research indicates that calves weaned in this method spend more time eating and resting and less time walking or bawling than traditionally weaned calves. The rate of gain of fence-line weaned calves is similar to non-weaned calves (Table 1).

Table 1. Pounds gained in weeks relative to weaning by method

Weeks after weaning Non-weaned (pasture)a Fence-line weaned (pasture)b Complete separation (pasture) Complete separation, used to hay (drylot) Complete separation, not used to hay (drylot)
2 44 lb. 47 lb. 30 lb. 23 lb. 20 lb.
10 143 lb. 110 lb. 91 lb. 79 lb. 82 lb.
A – not weaned at all during 10 weeks of trial
B – seven days of fence-line exposure to cows then completely separated

Price et al. J. Anim.Sci. 2003

In the study in Table 1, fence-line weaned calves kept up with their unweaned counterparts early on, but slowed down late in weaning. In contrast, conventionally weaned calves performed poorly from the start. Even though, conventionally weaned calves started to catch up to the other groups by 70 days after weaning, they never did catch-up in terms of weight gain. This difference is important in short-term (45-60 days) weaning and background systems because there is insufficient time to regain reduced performance.

Obviously the worst option is to wean calves into a drylot with unfamiliar feed. In fence-line weaning, it is important that calves remain in a familiar pasture with a water source they use regularly. When initiating fence-line weaning, move cows and calves to a fresh pasture with plenty of forage for a few days before weaning. Then move cows to an adjacent pasture leaving the calves in the familiar pasture.

Weaner rings

In the last couple of years, producers and researchers have been interested if weaning could be achieved by calves remaining in the same pasture with their mothers and suckling prevented by weaning rings. These rings (Figure 1) are inserted in the nose of calves for three to 14 days during which the calves shouldn't be able to nurse. The rings do not pierce the nose of the calf but merely held in by the width of the septum between the nostrils. After the initial weaning ring period, calves are completely separated from their dams and the rings removed.

Figure 1. Nose weaning ring

Several studies indicate that weaning rings are effective in reducing the behavioral stress associated with weaning. Calves that wore weaning rings for as little as three days spent more time eating and resting and less time bawling and walking than conventionally weaned calves.

However, several studies indicate that gain of calves weaned with a nose ring is similar or less than traditionally weaned calves. One report indicated a severe reduction in calf gain when rings were left in for 14 days. There are two causes for the reduction in gain. First calves have to learn how to graze with the weaning rings on. Certainly, these rings also get caught on forage during grazing and pull slightly on the calf’s nose. When rings are left in for 14 days, they can cause irritation to the nose. If the calf’s nose gets too sore, the soreness will decrease his desire to eat even after the rings are removed. Occasionally, weaning rings are lost and then calves respond like conventionally weaned calves when separated from their mothers. It appears that three to seven days is the optimal time to leave weaning rings in place. Rings are relatively inexpensive ($0.75 to $2.50) and can be cleaned and re-used.

More to weaning than no milk

To gain the premium for selling a “weaned calf,” most value-added programs and buyers require that calves are used to feed bunks and water troughs. The feed bunk portion of the equation is pretty simple with low-stress pasture weaning systems. Calves can easily be trained to eat feed out of a portable feed bunk in the pasture. Calves adapt to feed bunks more rapidly if they are introduced about a week before weaning so they learn from their dams. For pastures or range where water is often supplied in form of a creek or pond, the water trough aspect is a bit tougher. Having a couple of pastures where the only water provided is from water troughs can overcome this problem. A number of cost-share programs to develop watering systems that keep cattle out of surface water are available to assist with installing water troughs.

Marketing of weaned calves is also important. Little premium is paid for weaned calves if they are taken to the local market and buyers have to mix them with unweaned calves to make a load. Grouping weaned cattle with weaned calves from other operations and selling tractor-trailer loads is one option. Marketing though special weaned calf sales at a livestock market is another.


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