Dave Longshore doesn’t take any shortcuts with regards to correct vitamin for his purebred Black Angus operation in central Alberta.
It’s essential to provide wholesome, sound and fertile bulls that can be provided as breeding inventory, and if cows and heifers aren’t fed a well-balanced ration with correct mineral dietary supplements, that will even imply less-productive calves.
Longshore, together with spouse Lynne and members of the family, operates BAR-E-L Angus close to Stettler, about an hour east of Red Deer. He has been working primarily with marketing consultant Tom McNeely of Bullseye for a few years to verify all animals are fed a correct well-balanced ration in any respect phases of the manufacturing cycle.
“Bullseye has equipped all our minerals and premix for a few years,” says Longshore, who was born and raised on the household farm. “We’ve all the time felt that we’ve been given the fitting recommendation and high quality merchandise which have helped us produce high quality cattle.”
Longshore runs a herd of about 240 Black Angus cows. The herd is predominantly purebred with a number of business animals utilized in an embryo transplant program. Each yr they market about 65 head of breeding bulls, in addition to substitute heifers together with Angus genetics.
Nutritional necessities for the sale bulls are managed fairly otherwise than for cows and heifers. While cows and calves are out on largely native grass pasture many of the summer season and early fall they’re equipped with a balanced “however fairly easy” mineral combine, says Longshore.
Bull calves are weaned from cows in late September and placed on a feeding program. Heifer calves will stay with the cow herd till later in October. Depending on the yr and the rising season, the cows will stay on pasture till late fall earlier than transferring to swath grazing in November.
Swath grazing blends
Longshore says they’ve tried a number of totally different cereals for swath grazing. “We actually don’t have one normal mix. Some years the swath grazing is a mix of triticale and oats, and we’ve additionally grown triticale with barley, or a cocktail forage mix with triticale. They all appear to be very palatable and properly accepted by the cows.”
The cows and bred heifers stay on the swath grazing till December earlier than transferring to a winter feeding program that features native grass hay supplemented with barley and oat silage.
“Working with Bullseye we all the time have our feeds examined and stability the ration to verify all dietary wants are met,” says Longshore. “Particularly in that final trimester (they start calving in January) we wish to make sure the cows are doing properly as a result of that has lots to do with the well being of calves. Baby calf well being depends upon the cow well being. If cow well being is uncared for, that can have an effect on the calf.”
The bull calves being raised for breeding animals can be placed on a full feed grain and silage ration that features a correctly formulated premix complement. “It is a balancing act,” says Longshore. “We wish to optimize price of achieve with out the animals getting fats.”
The bull calves are fed a ration that targets a achieve of about three kilos or extra per day. “Our cattle are bred to supply that form of efficiency,” says Longshore. “We can alter as wanted however we wish a excessive price of achieve in addition to a structural soundness. We need muscle improvement with out the bulls getting fats. We are additionally in search of sound ft and legs.
“And after all they should have fertility. You can produce some great-looking animals, but when they don’t have fertility then every little thing ends there.
“Bullseye has helped to develop the ration that delivers the efficiency we’re in search of,” says Longshore.