.- *'.. UNIVERSITY OF
Institute of Food aii. Angri-,u r,'.l S..I. ,n ',.,
Prepared By Extension
Specialists In Animal Sciences
*. F.G. Hembry, Professor, Department Chairman
R.S. Sand, Associate Professor, Extension
E.L. Johnson, Associate Professor, Extension
W.E. Kunkle, Professor, Extension Beef
S.H. TenBroeck, Associate Professor,
Extension Youth Specialist
R.O. Myer, Professor, Animal Nutritionist,
W. Taylor, Coordinator Youth
A. Stelzleni, Research Programs/Services
1 New Year's Day
4 Brangus Bonanza Dunnellon
5 Horse Judging Coaches Seminar -
10-11 2002 Ruminant Nutrition Symposium -
17 19th Annual Florida Cattlemen's
Institute and Allied Trade Show -
18 Florida Association of Livestock
Markets Annual Meeting
18-20 Breeding Management Short Course -
In This Issue...
Dr. Fred W. Leak, Jr. (1957-2001) ....................... 2
Beef Management Calendar............................. 2-3
Harvard Study Shows Very Low Risk
of BSE in the United States........................... 3-4
"Factors Affecting Calf Crop: Biotechnology
of Reproduction" is now available for
purchase ............................................ ........... 5
Pop-Up Adhesive Tape Aids Scientists in
Monitoring Microbes on Meat......................... 5-6
Lam initis/Founder....... .......................... .............. 6-8
Florida is Officially Free of Brucellosis:
U SD A ............ .............. ................ 8
Southern Section Academic
Quadrathlon Lab Practicum
State Fair Horse and Livestock Judging
tiis sue oft/ e
Dr FrredtdW Lea Jr.
The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to
individuals and institutions that function without regard to race, color, sex, age, handicap, or national origin For information on obtaining other extension publications, contact your county
Cooperative Extension Service Office Florida Cooperative Extension Service/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences/University of Florida/ Christine Taylor Waddill, Director
2 January 2002
1 Dr. Fred W.
Fred W. Leak, Jr.,
faculty member in the
Department of Animal
Sciences, died unexpectedly
on Thursday, November 29th.
He was 44.
Leak joined the
Department of Animal
Sciences, in 1984 as a teacher and extension meat
specialist. He taught the popular undergraduate
elective course "The Meat We Eat," to several
hundred students over 15 years. He trained and
coached several meat judging teams at the
University of Florida and worked closely with
several 4-H and vocational agriculture programs
across Florida, in training meats judging teams and
evaluating carcasses of animals shown at youth
A native of Jacksonville, Leak attended the
University of Florida and received his BS degree in
1979 and MS in 1982. He continued studying in the
meats area and received his PhD Degree from the
University of Kentucky in 1984.
Leak worked with many meat packers, food
wholesalers, supermarkets, and cruise lines on
designing programs to improve meat
merchandising, the eating experience, and food
safety. He pioneered development of food safety
programs for meat packers, food merchandisers, and
cruise lines. He was a dynamic and engaging
speaker, and made many presentations across the
U.S. and other countries.
Expression of sympathy may be made
through donations to the Fred Leak Scholarship
fund at the University of Florida, Department of
Donations to the Scholarship Fund should be
made out as follows:
University of Florida Foundation
F.W. Leak Scholarship
D.D. Johnson, Scholarship Chairman
Department of Animal Sciences
University of Florida
P.O. Box 110910
Gainesville, FL 32611
) Apply lime for summer crops.
) Check for lice and treat if necessary.
) Control weeds in cool season pastures.
) Begin grazing winter clover pastures when
approximately 6 inches high. Rye should be 12
18 inches high.
) Check mineral feeders.
) Put bulls out for October calving season.
) Make up breeding herd lists if using single sire
) Watch for calf scours.
) Give bulls extra feed and care so they will be in
condition for breeding season.
) Make sure cow herd has access to adequate
) Buy only performance tested bulls with
) Get taxes filed.
) Discuss herd health with your veterinarian and
outline a program for the year. Review herd
health program with your veterinarian
) Carry a pocket notebook to record heat,
breeding abnormalities, discharges, abortions,
retained placentas, difficult calvings and other
January 2002 3
1 Observe cow herd for calving difficulties.
1 Watch for grass tetany on winter pastures.
1 Increase magnesium levels in mineral mixes if
grass tetany has been previous problem (if you
are not already using a high magnesium
1 Examine bulls for breeding soundness and
semen quality prior to the breeding season.
1 Vaccinate cows and heifers against vibriosis
and leptospirosis prior to the breeding season.
1 Top dress winter forages, if needed.
1 Check and fill mineral feeders.
1 Put bulls out with breeding herd.
1 Work calves (identify, implant with growth
stimulant, vaccinate, etc.).
1 Make sure lactating cows are receiving an
adequate level of energy.
1 Watch calves for signs of respiratory diseases.
1 Cull cows that failed to calve while prices are
1 Check for lice and treat if needed.
1 Prepare land for summer crops.
1 Begin grazing warm season permanent
1 Check and fill mineral feeder.
1 Observe bulls for condition and success.
Rotate and rest if needed.
1 Deworm cows as needed.
1 Make sure calves are healthy and making good
1 Hang forced-use dust bags by April 1st for
external parasite control or use insecticide
impregnated ear tags.
1 Identify, vaccinate, implant, and work late
1 Put bulls out March 1st for calving season to
start December 9.
1 Remove bulls March 22nd to end calving
season January 1.
Harvard Study Shows
Very Low Risk of BSE in
the United States
The U.S. Department of Agriculture today
released a landmark study by Harvard University
that shows the risk of Bovine Spongiform
Encephalopathy (BSE) occurring in the United
States is extremely low. The report showed that
early protection systems put into place by the
USDA and Department of Health and Human
Services (HHS) have been largely responsible for
keeping BSE out of the U.S. and would prevent it
from spreading if it ever did enter the country. Even
so, officials outlined a series of actions to be taken
that would continue strengthening programs to
reduce that risk even further.
The risk assessment was commissioned by
USDA and conducted by the Harvard Center for
Risk Analysis. It evaluates the ways BSE could
spread if it were to ever enter the United States. The
report's purpose is to give agencies a scientific
analysis to evaluate preventative measures already
in place and identify additional actions that should
be taken to minimize the risk of BSE.
"The study released today clearly shows
that the years of early actions taken by the federal
government to safeguard consumers have helped
keep BSE from entering the United States," said
Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman. "Even if
BSE were to ever be introduced, it would be
contained according to the study. However, we
cannot let down our guard or reduce our vigilance.
We must continue to strengthen these critical
programs and today we are announcing a series of
actions to bolster our protection systems."
"Based on three years of thorough study, we
are firmly confident that BSE will not become an
animal or public health problem in America, said
Dr. George Gray, deputy director of the Harvard
Center for Risk Analysis and director of the project.
In response to the report, Veneman
announced a series of actions the USDA would
take, in cooperation with HHS, to strengthen its
4 January 2002
BSE prevention programs and maintain the
government's vigilance against the disease.
First, USDA will have the risk assessment
peer reviewed by a team of outside experts to
ensure its scientific integrity.
Second, the USDA will more than double
the number of BSE tests it will conduct this fiscal
year, with over 12,500 cattle samples targeted in
2002--up from 5,000 during 2001.
Third, USDA will publish a policy options
paper outlining additional regulatory actions that
may be taken to reduce the potential risk of
exposure and ensure potential infectious materials
remain out of the U.S food supply. To ensure its
decisions are science-based, options will be tested
using the computer model developed through the
risk assessment to determine the potential impact
they would have on animal and public health.
The options to be considered will include:
prohibiting the use of brain and spinal cord from
specified categories of animals in human food;
prohibiting the use of central nervous system tissue
in boneless beef products, including meat from
advanced meat recovery (AMR) systems; and
prohibiting the use of vertebral column from certain
categories of cattle, including downed animals, in
the production of meat from advanced meat
recovery systems. USDA will invite public
comment on the options and then proceed with
appropriate regulatory actions.
Fourth, USDA will issue a proposed rule to
prohibit the use of certain stunning devices used to
immobilize cattle during slaughter.
Fifth, USDA will publish an Advance
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) to
consider additional regulatory options for the
disposal of dead stock on farms and ranches. Such
cattle are considered an important potential pathway
for the spread of BSE in the animal chain.
"We found that even if BSE were ever
introduced, it would not become established," said
Gray. "With the government programs already in
place, even accounting for imperfect compliance,
the disease in the cattle herd would quickly die out,
and the potential for people to be exposed to
infected cattle parts that could transmit the disease
is very low."
BSE has never been detected in U.S. cattle,
nor has there been a case of the human form of the
disease, variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (vCJD),
detected in the United States. Since 1989, USDA
has banned the import of live ruminants, such as
cattle, sheep and goats, and most ruminant products
from the United Kingdom and other countries
having BSE. The ban was extended to Europe in
1997. To stop the way the disease is thought to
spread, HHS prohibited the use of most mammalian
protein in the manufacture of animal feed intended
for cows and other ruminants. Should a case of BSE
ever be detected in this country, an emergency
response plan has been developed to immediately
control suspect animals and prevent them from
entering the food supply.
This summer, HHS Secretary Tommy
Thompson announced an action plan outlining new
steps to improve scientific understanding of BSE
that incorporates a comprehensive approach to
further strengthen surveillance, increase research
resources and expand existing inspection efforts.
BSE is a chronic, degenerative neurological
disorder of cattle that belongs to a family of
diseases known as transmissible spongiform
encephalopathies. Also included in that family of
illnesses is vCJD, which is believed to be caused by
eating neural tissue, such as brain and spinal cord,
from BSE-affected cattle.
A complete copy of the Harvard Report can
be obtained from USDA's official website at
http://www.usda.gov/. For more information about
BSE and the many efforts being taken to prevent its
entry and spread into the United States, also visit
http://www.usda.gov/ or http://www.hhs.gov/.
Release November 30, 2001
S "Factors Affecting
Reproduction" is now
available for purchase
Get the combined expertise of over 25
leading scientists- Edited by Michael J.
Fields, Robert S. Sand, and Joel V. Yelich
In today's world, we are witnessing
simultaneous breakthroughs in reproductive
technologies, genomics, and molecular biology.
Advances in molecular genetic technology and
understanding of the bovine genome have led to the
development of tools that can be used to enhance
profitability on cow-calf enterprises. Factors
Affecting Calf Crop: Biotechnology of
Reproduction provides a detailed compilation of
current and forthcoming technology for managing
reproduction in cattle.
The book discusses topics such as: approved
techniques for controlling the estrous cycle in cattle;
managing follicular growth with progesterone,
estrogens, and prostaglandins; freezing, thawing,
and transfer of cattle embryos; application of
embryo transfer to the beef cattle industry; embryo
transfer in topically adapted cattle; new factors
affecting bull fertility; embryo collection and
utilization technology, in vitro fertilization, somatic
cell cloning and genetic technologies; uses of real
time ultrasound; and sexed semen.
Over 25 leading animal scientists have
combined their expertise to produce the first single-
source reference that covers successful reproductive
techniques that will, most likely, be the wave of the
future. Expansive in scope, the book addresses
current biotechnologies as they impact the
production of beef cattle. Written at a level to
appeal to the researcher, commercial producer, or
student, Factors Affecting Calf Crop:
Biotechnology of Reproduction presents you with
a wealth of technologies applicable to animal
January 2002 5
The features include:
. Different approaches to estrous synchronization
and artificial insemination.
. Methods for cloning, sequencing the bovine
genome, marker-assisted selection, ultrasound
sexing of fetuses, and improving the pregnancy
. Contributions from experts in the rapidly
emerging practice of applying biotechnology to
* Addressing all of the current biotechnologies
and their potential impact on the production of
You may purchase Factors Affecting Calf
Crop: Biotechnology of Reproduction (Catalog
no. 1117) through CRC Press for $109.95, by going
online at www.crcpress.com or phone (800) 272-
Believe it or not. A major manufacturer of
adhesive tape discovered a way to facilitate gift
wrapping, and this method ultimately turned into a
way to expedite scientists' sampling for bacteria on
II III __
6 January 2002
Sounds strange, but it's true. Laboratory
personnel monitor the population of microbes on
meat to learn about the potential of spoilage. It just
so happens that applying a piece of adhesive tape to
the surface and then examining it for bacteria is one
of the simplest ways to accomplish this goal,
according to a news release from Food Safety
No longer an awkward method
"One inconvenience in the tape method was
having to use both hands to peel the adhesive tape
from the protective material before placing the tape
onto the meat surface for removal of microbes,"
said Daniel Fung, a Kansas State University food
scientist and Food Safety Consortium researcher.
After pondering this dilemma, Fung found his
inspiration in a television commercial. 3M, the
manufacturer of Scotch tape, was promoting its
pop-up tape dispenser as a way for people to wrap
gifts without feeling the need for a third hand. Pull a
piece of tape out of the dispenser, and the next piece
pops up ready to be pulled.
"They (3M) had no idea this [tape] can be used
for microbiology," Fung said. But Fung did, and he
tried it. He found the method to be effective and
cheap, costing about 1 cent per test, excluding the
"Let's take a piece of tape and put it on the
surface of the meat for 15 seconds," Fung said.
"Peel it off and put it on the surface of agar [a
gelatin-like substance used as a base for culture
media that grow bacteria] for 15 seconds. Peel it off
and you're done. Incubate the agar for 12 to 24
hours. Count the colonies. You don't have to do any
In conventional swab-and-rinse methods,
scientists would swab the meat surface, place the
contents in a tube, shake it up in a mixture diluted
by a ratio of one to 10 and incubate the dilution for
24 hours. The procedure costs about $2 each time --
considerably more expensive than the pop-up tape
"Each sheet of tape along with part of an agar
will provide information equivalent to one swab
procedure, which utilizes diluents, sterile pipettes,
sterile swabs, agar and petri plates to make viable
cell counts," Fung said.
Using the tape is versatile not only because the
pop-up method allows a scientist a free hand, but
the tape itself can be applied to curved and flat-meat
Although adhesive tape has been used in meat
sampling for about 30 years, the procedure hasn't
been promoted in an organized way, Fung said.
His experiments with the tape involved only
beef surfaces, but the method can also be used on
surfaces of poultry, fish, pork, fruit, tabletops and
bench tops, according to the news release. Agars
can be used to study the prevalence of organisms
such as salmonella, listeria, and lactic acid bacteria.
"This may be the one [method] we can push,"
Fung said. "This is so simple and efficient. This will
be the easiest possible way to do microbiological
sampling for meat surfaces."
Release November 26, 2001
may possibly be the most
feared word a horse
owner could hear. It
results in a vast array of
emotions because so little
is understood by the
layperson about causes,
and/or cures. This really isn't surprising since a
large percentage of farriers, veterinarians,
researchers, and other professionals do not have a
much better understanding than the average horse
owner. Additionally there are so many stories and
much misinformation in the horse world concerning
founder. What horse owner hasn't read or heard
about some rather famous horse that had to be
euthanized because of founder?
Those who deal with founder on a somewhat
routine basis, whether trying to treat a case or doing
research, are the people who realize just how
difficult founder is to understand and how difficult
it is to provide satisfactory answers. What they
know is there are few firm answers. Except in the
mildest of cases, there are some generalities that
1. Extreme pain is present, which may be
exceptionally difficult for those involved in
the case to deal with.
2. There will be good days and bad days.
3. There are no hard and fast treatment
regimes; different horses respond differently
to various treatment protocols.
4. Some horses suffer such an insult they are
unable to be saved.
5. Those that do "recover" seldom (if ever)
6. Recurrent abscesses are commonplace and
are to be expected.
7. Once a horse has foundered, it is more prone
to founder again than a horse that hasn't
How are laminitis and founder related? Are
they really the same thing? What role does laminitis
play in founder? These are questions that add to the
confusion. To begin to gain an understanding and
appreciation of founder, we first must distinguish
the difference between, and the relationship of,
laminitis to founder. Technically, laminitis is an
inflammation of the laminae of the hoof. Depending
upon the severity of the inflammation, the treatment
provided, and the time of inception of the treatment,
January 2002 7
laminitis may or may not result in founder. Founder
is a term that has been borrowed from nautical
terminology meaning "to sink." That is what the
coffin bone (the major bone enclosed in the hoof
capsule) does in the case of founder. In most
instances, the coffin bone pulls away from its dorsal
attachment to the hoof capsule and the tip of the
bone begins to rotate downward. The other scenario
that can occur is termed a "sinker." This occurs
when most or all of the attachment of the coffin
bone fails and the entire coffin bone sinks
downward in the hoof capsule. If the condition is
severe enough, the horse may actually step out of
the hoof capsule. Obviously, a horse that is a sinker
has a very poor prognosis.
Laminitis and/or founder may occur in any
or all feet on a given horse and most frequently
occurs in one or both front feet. Seldom does it
occur in the hind feet and not in the front feet,
although this situation may occur. As we try to learn
about this disease, it is helpful to understand what
causes founder. It seems most people believe
laminitis/founder is a condition caused by
overeating or possibly from overdrinking while hot.
In actuality, a great many things can cause laminitis
and in the majority of cases, we may not really
know the cause. What we do know is, for some
reason, the body releases toxins which in turn cause
laminitis. Certainly this can be caused by an
overload of concentrates or the ingestion of too
much lush grass. However, many other factors may
precipitate the release of toxins inducing laminitis.
Events such as retained placentas, reactions to drugs
or vaccines, ingestion of toxic plants, substances or
molds, and simply excessive concussion from use
on hard surfaces may cause laminitis.
If you suspect a horse has suffered an event
that culd induce laminitis or is showing signs of
laminitis, call your veterinarian and farrier
immediately. Do not be afraid to ask them of their
experience with laminitis/founder and whether they
are comfortable treating and managing a horse with
this condition. There are many farriers and
veterinarians that do not like, or will not deal with
founder. If this is the situation you are confronted
with, don't hesitate to locate a person or persons
who are competent and interested. Many times the
farrier and/or veterinarian may want to call in
8 January 2002
another party for consultation and this should not be
discouraged. When dealing with founder, it is
always good to have multiple opinions as to
potential treatment regimes. There are many
treatment protocols, and they may need to vary
through the course of treatment.
While waiting for the veterinarian and/or
farrier to arrive, there are several actions one can
take. Make and keep the horse as comfortable as
possible. Move the horse as little as possible to help
reduce insult to the laminae. By some method,
support the coffin bone. This can be achieved by
standing in deep sand or shavings, taping a roll of
gauze over the frog, taping a thick Styrofoam block
to the foot, or using one of the commercial products
available (lily pads, Redden wedges, etc.). Also,
keep the foot cool by standing in ice water or hosing
with cool water.
When dealing with laminitis/founder, the sooner
treatment is started the better chance for a good
prognosis. If laminitis progresses to founder, one
must be prepared mentally, physically, and
monetarily for a long battle. The farrier and
veterinarian may be on site frequently for the first
few days; but as the condition progresses, care will
be the primary responsibility of the daily care
provider. It can be a tough situation to deal with;
however, in many cases the battle can be won. With
ongoing research providing more insight into
treatment protocols and new and better products to
use in treatment, the future looks brighter.
Edward L. Johnson
Associate Professor, Equine
Department of Animal Sciences
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32611
Florida Is Officially Free of
Here's good news for Florida's 20,000 cattle
operations, about 98 percent of which are owned by
small farmers. The Agriculture Department declared
Florida free of brucellosis earlier this month, and it
lifted certain restrictions on the interstate movement
of cattle from that state.
Brucellosis class-free status will enhance the
national and international marketability of beef
from that state, according to a news release. The
status hinges on finding no cases of brucellosis in
cattle and bison for 12 months.
Florida has not discovered any infected
herds in more than 12 months and has met all other
requirements of the cooperative state-federal
brucellosis eradication program for class-free status.
It joins 47 other states, Puerto Rico and the U.S.
Virgin Islands in achieving brucellosis class-free
The presence of brucellosis has cost the
federal government, states and the livestock
industry billions of dollars in production losses,
eradication costs and lost or unrealized export
markets. As long as the disease is present in the
United States, it poses a threat to the $53 billion
U.S. beef industry, the news release added.
Brucellosis is a highly contagious disease of
cattle causing abortions and lowered milk
production. In humans, the disease causes severe
flu-like symptoms that can last for months or years
if left untreated.
Release December 17, 2001