In This Issue...
Bcef Mlana'cnm'nt Calendar 2
Lit stock Summinl
Bccf (attcl Field Da\
N\V Florida Bccf Confercncc to Feature Breedin
Winter Forauc Promram Field Da\ & Tour 4
Nc\\ FDA Rilcs on Fccd \\ in Piaisc from ANI 5
LISDA Approt cs Thrcc Labs to Condlict Official
Sciaplc Ginotx ping 5
Bronson1 Appoints Staite ctcrinarian I
Lisin,_ Clharolais C'ossbrcd Hcifers as
Bionson AnnouncCs Anrrcst of (attic Bioklc in $1
Million S\\ indIc 7
Bush Proposes 147 Million Boost for BSE-Rclatcd
Prepared by Extension Specialists in
*o J.D. Arthington
BeefCattle Management, Ona
BeefCattle Extension Specialist, Marianna
*: GR. Hansen
BeefCattle Production, Marianna
EG Hembry, Professor
Department Chairman, Gainesville
Extension BeefCattle Specialist, Gainesville
*. E.L. Johnson, Associate Professor
Extension Equine Specialist, Gainesville
T.T. Marshall, Professor
BeefCattle Management, Gainesville
: R.O. Myer, Professor
Animal Nutritionist, Marianna
R.S. Sand, Associate Professor
Extension Livestock Specialist, Gaine ville
: W. Taylor, Coordinator
Youth Education/ .......... Gainesville
S.H. TenBroeck, Associate Professor
Extension Equine Specialist, Gainesville
T.A. Thrift, Assistant Professor
BeefCattle Nutrition. Gainesville
1 Dates to Remember
5 N\\ FL BLcf it onflllcell \IlIIuiiia. FL
5&9 FL State Fair: Open Beef Shows Tampa, FL
6&1l FL State FIanI outli B4f NSii,\\ TampIa. FL
10 Florida Ag Hall of Fame Induction Banquet Tampa,
7 FL S.~ir F.ir 4-H D.i. T.inp.i. FL
7 FL State Fair: 4-H Horse Judging Tampa, FL
7 FL Sr.kl F.ir 4-H Lil\.hclk .IJIl iIn T.i Lp.i. FL
10 FL State Fair: Youth Steer Showmanship Tampa, FL
11 FL S.ltA F.nr Y iitlli S Lk.i Slih\\ T.nmp.i. FL
11 USDA-NRCS Florida Listening Session for Public
Comment Ft. Pierce, FL
211-23 I.tichl .i (.'C iniP, llih F.iir & Li\ .tlck Sliih t -
i. ciiL \ lli. FL
24 Winter Forage Program Field Day & Tour Ona, FL
27 L\ic,r ck .ltlJ-i n (.Ji nir (t ('li l.. FL
1 L i\' c'ock, J.u1I Iln C o'ntt.t ( i I.andI FL
3-4 West Florida Livestock Show & Sale Quincy, FL
9-111 FL L';-ldtli\ ((u.ltlil:, M\ etinl Tallaha-uL FL
13 State 4-H Hippology Contest Orlando. FL
25 NFRE( BLclf attlk FiclJ D.: N.Iamaiiii. FL
tirstjoal of the year born at the University ofFlorida s Horse
Research Center at 1:00 am on Monday, January 26, 2004.
This photo was taken of him at approximately
8 hours ofage. Photo courtesy of Steve Vargas,Farm Manager,
University of Florida Horse Research Center.
UNIVERSITY OF H' 1
FLORIDA di .cffce
IFAS EXTENSION Airslr .
The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Employment Opportunity Affirmative Action Employer authorized to provide research, educational information, and
other services only to individuals that function with regard to race, color sex, age, handicap, or national origin. For information on obtaining other extension publications, contact your
county Cooperative Extension Service office.
0 Top dress winter forages, if needed.
0 Check and fill mineral feeders.
0 Put bulls out with breeding herd.
0 Work calves (identify, implant with growth stimulant,
0 Make sure lactating cows are receiving an adequate
level of energy.
0 Watch calves for signs of respiratory diseases.
0 Cull cows that failed to calve while prices are
0 Check for lice and treat if needed.
0 Prepare land for summer crops.
0 Begin grazing warm season permanent pastures.
0 Check and fill mineral feeder.
0 Observe bulls for condition and success. Rotate and
rest if needed.
0 Deworm cows as needed.
0 Make sure calves are healthy and making good
0 Hang forced-use dust bags by April 1 st for external
parasite control or use insecticide impregnated ear
0 Identify, vaccinate, implant, and work late calves.
0 Put bulls out March 1 st for calving season to start
0 Remove bulls March 22nd to end calving season
0 Plant warm season annual pastures.
0 Plant corn for silage.
0 Check and fill mineral feeder.
0 Check dust bags or apply treated ear tags.
0 Check for external parasites and treat if necessary.
0 Observe cows for repeat breeders.
0 Deworm cows as needed if not done in March.
0 Vaccinate against blackleg and brucellosis after 3
months of age and before 12 months of age.
0 Market cull cows and bulls.
0 Update market information and refine market
strategy for calves.
Domestic and export demand for
beef, particularly higher quality, has
remained strong since 2000.
Consequently, beef prices have been on
a record pace since mid-winter because
of reduced cattle supplies that were
further tightened by poor winter feeding conditions.
Unfavorable forage conditions since 1998 have not
helped herd expansion, although feed grain prices have
remained moderate. Cow and heifer slaughter has
remained high through October 2003 because of these
continued poor forage conditions in many areas.
A shift toward expansion could occur with the 2004
breeding season if forage supplies improve, cow slaughter
declines, and a larger number of heifers are bred. Even
if all of these events occur, beef production will not begin
to expand until as early as 2006.
The fed cattle supply situation became even tighter
in the fall quarter of 2003, with boxed beef prices rising
in October, up 58 percent from a year ago. These retail
beef prices are likely to continue on a record-setting
path as high prices are passed on to consumers.
The USDA issued a proposed rule on October 31
to establish a new category of regions that present a
minimal risk of introducing Bovine Spongiform
Encephalopathy into the United States via the importation
of certain low-risk live ruminants and their byproducts.
This proposed rule has a 60-day comment period, after
which the USDA will evaluate all suggestions before
issuing a final rule.
Although feedlot placements rose sharply this
summer, feeder cattle supplies are already down. This
year's calf crop is expected to be at 38 million head, the
smallest since 1951.
Until cow slaughter begins to decline and more
heifers are retained, the calf crop will continue to decline.
The loss of feeder cattle imports from Canada further
tightens the supply situation and it will remain very tight
over the next couple of years.
Increased domestic supplies are simply not
biologically possible until 2006, unless something
happens to force increased herd liquidation. However,
improved moisture conditions this fall have helped to
reduce drought areas.
Weather conditions through spring and improved
grazing conditions in 2004 will be key factors in providing
the foundation for the beginning stages of herd expansion.
Florida's cow/calf operators are in a wait-and-see mode
as weather conditions and the situation in Canada will
have a big impact on their future.
Florida's Top Cattle Counties by
inl-antr* nn) \
Beef Cattle Field Day
Thursday, March 25, 2004
North Florida REC
Marianna Beef Unit, Marianna, FL
To register or for more information, please contact
Gary Hansen at (850)482-1243 or by email at
GRHansen@ifas.ufl.edu or Bob Myer at (850) 482-
9955 or by email at BMyer@ifas.ufl.edu.
Morning Program Moderator: Doug Mayo
8:00 AM Registration *
1999 2000 2001 2002
Florida Egg Production
1999 2000 2001
The Florida Agri-Journal
Researched by Tony Young
Marketing Specialist I
Division of Marketing
Release December 5, 2003
Welcome Glen Hembry
1) Update of Reproduction
Technologies Gary Hansen
2) Crop and Grazing Rotations -
3) Cool Season Forages -Ann Blount
4) Supplemental Feeding Bob Myer/
5) Cow Productivity Jeff Carter/
12:00 Lunch and Beef Industry Update -
1:30 PM Roger West
Afternoon Program Moderator: Gary Hansen
1) Tour of Forage Research Plots -
2) Animal Identification-
Steve Blackburn, Allflex
Optional Self Tours of Beef Unit
(map will be provided)
3:00 PM Adjourn
*Registration fee of $5.00 per person will be charged to
help defray the cost of lunch, refreshments, and
publication costs of the proceedings.
Florida Hog Average Price
SImLu I y I. uu .l
The 13th annual Northwest Florida Beef
Conference and Trade Show will focus on Breeding Herd
Management. Ranchers will also have the opportunity
to meet representatives from companies that provide
products and services to the cattle industry in the region
at the trade show held through out the morning session.
The Beef Conference will be held in Marianna on
Thursday, February 5 at the Jackson County Agriculture
Center. The trade show will open at 8:00 AM Central
Time with the program getting underway at 9:00. Lunch
will also be provided.
The program will feature speakers discussing herd
management practices that affect reproduction.
Reproduction is the number one factor that affects the
profitability of a beef herd. The only way to make money
from the cows you keep is if they produce a calf each
year. Topics for discussion will include: The value of a
breeding season, the best time of year to calve,
crossbreeding and the type of breeds that should be used,
how to manage for fertility and feeding the herd to
improve reproduction. More specific information on the
Conference is available on the web at http://
The Beef Conference is an annual event sponsored
by University of Florida Extension and allied industry
representatives. If you would like more information on
the program or on exhibiting at the trade show, contact
Doug Mayo at the Jackson County Extension Office
Directions to the Beef Conference:
T Hwy 90 Marianna
Travel to Marianna and exit Interstate 10 at State
Road 276 (exit 20) and travel North 2 miles to Highway
90; turn West (left) on Highway 90 and go 2 miles. The
Ag Center will be marked with a green sign and will be
on the South (left) side of the road.
Jackson County Extension
Day & Tour
Tuesday, February 24, 2004
Range Cattle REC
8:00-8:30 Walk-in Registration & Coffee
Brief Introduction Martin B. Adjei
Establishment, Management, Performance
of Cool Season Varieties ryegrass, small
grains, tall fescue, white and red clovers -
Field-Scale Methods for Successful
Ryegrass Establishment -
Management of Early Weaned Calves on
Ryegrass Pasture John D. Arthington
CostAnalysis ofRyegrass Establishment
on South Florida Pastureland -
Tom E. Anton
Directions: From SR 64, travel to Ona and turn south
on County Road 663 at caution light. Travel 5 miles
on 663 and turn right on Goose Pond Road. Travel
1.5 miles and turn left on CR 663Ato the office which
is on the left.
Martin B. Adjei
Range Cattle REC
New FDA Rules on Feed Win
Praise from AMI
The Food and Drug Administration has published
new rules to bolster prevention of bovine spongiform
encephalopathy, including bans on feeding mammalian
blood to calves, the use of downer cattle, and high-risk
material such as brain and spinal cord tissue in FDA-
In addition, FDA is prohibiting the feeding of poultry
litter and restaurant scraps to cattle and has banned using
dead or disabled cows to make products for people
like dietary supplements, cosmetics, or soups and other
foods with traces of meat.
The rules will take effect in a few days, as soon as
they are published in The Federal Register, a spokesman
for the agency said. The quick start of the rules after
their announcement is a departure from the usual,
Tommy G Thompson, the secretary of the Health
and Human Services Department, the parent of the food
and drug agency, called the rules "a giant step forward."
It is widely believed that contaminated feed ignited
the mad cow epidemic in Britain during the 1980s.
Scientists suspect that feed can transmit the disease if it
includes bone meal or other material rendered from the
carcasses of sick cows, particularly the brain and spinal
cord. The United States banned the use of rendered cattle
in cattle feed in 1997 but has continued to let producers
feed cow blood to calves as a milk substitute.
FDA's announcement was lauded by AMI
President J. Patrick Boyle, who noted the new rules go
beyond what is called for under the Office of International
Epizootics (OIE) guidelines for countries that have
identified a single case of BSE.
"FDA's announcement clearly strengthens existing
feed restrictions," Boyle said. "It is our view that feed
controls are an important line of defense in preventing
BSE. With a greater than 99 percent level of compliance
with existing feed restrictions, the highest level of
compliance with any FDA rule, the new and aggressive
actions will create an extraordinarily high level of
assurance that U.S. cattle are protected from the risk of
Release January 28, 2004
USDA Approves Three Labs to
Conduct Official Scrapie
Three laboratories which conduct genotyping tests
on sheep to determine susceptibility to scrapie have been
officially approved by the Animal and Plant Health
Inspection Service-Veterinary Services (APHIS-VS) of
the U. S. Department ofAgriculture (USDA.).
They are GenMark, DeForest, WI; GeneCheck,
Inc., Fort Collins, CO.; and GeneSeek, Inc., Lincoln,
The approved laboratories are eligible to conduct
privately funded official genotype testing and compete
for testing done as part of the National Accelerated
Scrapie Eradication Program (NASEP). The approval
lasts for one year and is subject to review and renewal.
This means that the test results from blood samples drawn
and submitted by accredited veterinarians at their clients'
request and expense will be officially recognized by
APHIS when tested at one of these laboratories.
Other laboratories that have applied for approval
and demonstrated that they meet the standards required
by APHIS-VS will be posted on the Scrapie website
when they have received notification of approval as
official genotyping laboratories.
Genotyping testing is a key element in the NASEP
program as part of the Genetic Based Flock Clean-up
and Monitoring Plans for flocks identified as exposed to
or infected with scrapie. It is also becoming an important
management tool for some producers who are breeding
for scrapie resistance.
This information and other topics relating to the
scrapie eradication program are available at http://
LaboratoriesApproved for Scrapie Genotyping
1825 Infinity Drive
DeForest, WI 53532
1629 Blue Spruce Drive
Ft. Collins, CO 80524
4711 Innovation Drive
Lincoln, NE 68521
National Institute for Animal
Release December 18, 2003
-. Bronson Appoints
-~~ FloridaAgriculture Commissioner
f.__, Charles H. Bronson announced the
appointment of Dr. Thomas J. Holt to the position of
Holt, who has worked for the U.S. Department of
Agriculture for 27 years in a series of positions with
increasing responsibility, replaces Dr. Leroy Coffman,
who resigned in December.
In his new capacity, Holt will serve not only as the
State Veterinarian but also as the Director of the Florida
Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services'
Division of Animal Industry an office responsible for
preventing, controlling and eradicating infectious and
communicable diseases of livestock and other domestic
"We are pleased to have a professional ofDr. Holt's
caliber oin our staff," Bronson said. "Our state has been
in the forefront in devising strategies to protect us from
animal diseases, and Dr. Holt's experience as an
emergency manager can only enhance our efforts."
Holt is recognized for his experience and expertise
in veterinary and zoonotic disease surveillance and
control strategies. He has worked throughout the country
and in several foreign countries during his nearly three
decade career with the federal government.
In his current capacity USDA'sAssociate Director
of Emergency Management for veterinary services for
the Eastern Region he is responsible for overseeing
preparedness and response to potentially dangerous
animal disease outbreaks that threaten public health, food
safety, and food security, including intentional
introductions through bio-terrorism.
Holt, a graduate of both college and veterinary
school at Comell University, will begin his state position
on March 15.
Release January 22, 2004
S/ Crossbred Heifers
...- as Replacements
In crossbreeding plans involving Charolais bulls the
term "terminal cross" is often used. "Terminal cross"
means that all calves, both steers and heifers, will be
sold at weaning with no heifers kept for replacements.
The most popular continental breed used in the U. S.
is the Charolais, a French breed. Charolais gained
popularity in the 1950's and 1960's, but fell out of vogue
in the 1970's for a number of reasons. Charolais has
regained much of its popularity in the last fifteen years,
primarily from the use of Charolais bulls in commercial
crossbreeding programs. In Florida, Charolais bulls have
been used in many cow herds containing Brahman and
English crossbred brood cows.
In 1963, Mr. Mac Peacock initiated a
crossbreeding study at the Range Cattle REC at Ona
that involved Charolais, Brahman and Angus breeds. The
study was designed to evaluate the three purebreds and
all possible two-way crosses between the three breeds..
One outcome of the study was that Brahman
genetics is very important for adaptability whether in
combination withAngus or Charolais breeds. It was also
observed that Brahman x Charolais crossbred cows
performed equally well as Brahman x Angus crossbred
cows. These comparisons were for both cow
reproduction performance and calf weaning weight.
These research data indicate that heifer calves
resulting from crossbreeding Charolais x Brahman will
make good replacements into a commercial breeding
herd. Another acceptable breeding plan could involve
breeding Brangus or Braford type cows to Charolais
bulls. Heifers from these crosses could be bred to Angus
or Hereford bulls. This would likely be a "terminal cross"
because the level of Brahman genetics may be too low
for cows in south Florida. However, these heifers should
make good brood cows in the more temperate climate
of north Florida and other areas in the Southeast.
Recently the author visited the Lightsey Ranch near
Lake Wales, Florida. This ranch has a large herd of
crossbred brood cows developed by breeding Braford
cows to Charolais bulls. This herd is bred back to Angus
bulls and has an excellent weaning rate of heavy feeder
calves that attract top dollar when marketed.
In summary, a production plan involving breeding
Brahman or Brahman derivative breeds to Charolais bulls
will produce replacement heifers very acceptable for use
in commercial breeding herds in south Florida. If these
heifers and cows are then bred to Angus, Hereford, or
back to Charolais bulls resulting females should be
marketed for feeding and slaughter. They could possibly
be marketed as breeding stock in north Florida and other
temperate regions in the Southeast.
Range Cattle REC
Published in "The Peace River
Farmer and Rancher" -
Arrest of Cattle
Broker in $1
Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services
Commissioner Charles H. Bronson announced the arrest
of a Gilchrist County cattle broker in connection with
the alleged skimming of an estimated $1 million from a
Tennessee cattle company.
The suspect Ronald Shephard, 28, of Trenton -
is charged with 13 counts of wire fraud, federal violations
which could carry up to 65 years in prison.
The arrest was made by Bronson's Office of
Agricultural Law Enforcement and the FBI, which have
been investigating the case since May of 2000.
According to authorities, Shephard had a contract
with Tennessee Dressed Beef, a Nashville based
company, to purchase cattle in the Florida, Georgia and
Alabama region, and sell them throughout the United
States. He is accused of collecting some of the sale
proceeds himself, stealing cattle and skimming money
from some of the transactions, authorities said.
"This case represents one of the largest livestock
swindles that our office has worked," Bronson said. "In
this business, buyers, sellers and companies that employ
them have to rely on the integrity of the individuals
involved, and this case represents a major departure from
Bronson's office began investigating the case after
the owner of the business that allegedly was defrauded
filed a complaint with the Gilchrist County Sheriff's
Department, claiming that the fraud had cost his company
about $1 million.
Shephard was arrested last March by law
enforcement officers in Bronson's office for falsifying
animal health certificates for more than 11,000 head of
cattle. In that case, he was accused of purchasing
numerous books of blank health certificates, so he could
ship the cattle out of Florida in the year 2000 without
having a veterinarian examine the animals.
In that case, Shephard, who is awaiting trial, could
face up to 35 years in prison and fines totaling $35,000.
Lt. Col. Lou Leinhauser
Release January 29, 2004
Bush Proposes $47 Million
Boost for BSE-Related Funding
Speaking at the National Cattlemen's Beef
Association's annual convention in Phoenix Thursday,
Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman said the White
House has budgeted $60 million in fiscal year 2005 to
fund multi-agency efforts to enhance the nation's bovine
spongiform encephalopathy prevention program-a $47
million increase from the previous year.
"The Bush Administration remains committed to
protecting public health and the safety of our food supply,"
Veneman said. "These additional resources will fund
enhanced prevention activities including increased testing,
monitoring and surveillance forBSE. These funds are in
addition to the $178 million already announced for
completion of the National Centers for Animal Health
Veneman noted the ban on U. S. beef in dozens of
export countries remains a problem, but "restoring our
export markets has been a top priority." She noted that
U.S. officials have been holding aggressive talks with
Japan and Mexico.
It is now up to Congress to approve the budget, a
377 percent increase over fiscal year 2004, which
includes $33 million to further accelerate the development
of a national animal ID system, $17 million for the Animal
and Plant Health Inspection Service to collect 40,000
samples and tests for BSE at rendering plants and on
farms and $5 million for theAgricultural Research Service
to conduct advanced research and development of BSE
The White House also is seeking approval to
allocate $4 million for the Food Safety and Inspection
Service to conduct monitoring and surveillance of
compliance with the regulations for specified risk
materials and advance meat recovery, and $1 million for
the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards
Administration to dispatch rapid response teams to
markets experiencing B SE- related complaints regarding
contracts or lack of prompt payment.
On Jan. 13, Veneman announced that the
president's fiscal 2005 budget would also include $178
million to complete the renovation of USDA's new
National Centers forAnimal Health. The Centers, located
in Ames, Iowa, is USDA's flagship laboratory for large
animal research and diagnosis. It was the National
Veterinary Services Laboratory, which is part of the
National Centers forAnimal Health, that diagnosed the
case of B SE found in Washington state.
President Bush's request would represent the final
installment of the $460 million needed to fully renovate
the facilities and if approved by Congress will permit the
USDA to complete the project by the end of 2007.
Release January 30, 2004