Beef Tips

Category: September 2020

Dealing with Anaplasmosis

by Sandy Johnson, extension beef specialist, Colby and A.J. Tarpoff, DVM, beef extension veterinarian

A 2017 survey of herds across Kansas found Anaplasmosis positive herds in all reporting districts.  See the May 2018 Beef Tips for a summary.  It has been a more common problem in the eastern third of the state where prevalence is still higher, but increasingly noted across the state.  The disease is caused by the Anaplama marginale bacterium which lives in the red blood cells of infected animals.  Once an animal becomes infected, the body’s own immune system recognizes the abnormal red blood cells and removes the infected cells from the body. When the normal creation of new red bloods cells can’t keep up with the loss of the infected ones, the animal becomes anemic.  The loss of red blood cells leads to a decrease oxygen carrying ability which results in clinical signs of disease. It usually takes about a month from time of infection to clinical disease but the range is 6-70 days. Although this disease can be spread during any time of year, clinical cases are most common during the late summer and early fall when transmission threats increase.  Continue reading “Dealing with Anaplasmosis”

Role of the Bull in Poor Pregnancy Outcomes

By Sandy Johnson, extension beef specialist, Colby and Gregg Hanzlicek, DVM, Veterinary Diagnostic Lab

When the number of cows pregnant is far below expectations, poor reproductive performance by both cows and bulls must be considered.  Keep in mind that in some cases multiple issues may contribute. The focus of this piece will be on the bull. Continue reading “Role of the Bull in Poor Pregnancy Outcomes”

Spices Fed to Growing Heifers on Bromegrass Result in Increased Gains with Some Effects on Tick Populations

Alternative methods to antibiotics/chemical usage in cattle production have been of interest in recent years and essential oils/spices have been promoted to fill this niche. The purpose of this research was to evaluate effect of feeding spices on heifer gains and as a control method for ticks. Continue reading “Spices Fed to Growing Heifers on Bromegrass Result in Increased Gains with Some Effects on Tick Populations”

2019 Kansas Summer Annual Forage Hay and Silage Variety Trial

Data is now available from the 2019 summer annual forage variety trials conducted across Kansas near Garden City, Hays, and Scandia. All sites evaluated hay and silage entries. Companies were able to enter varieties into any possible combinations of research sites, so not all sites had all varieties. Across the sites, a total of 95 hay varieties, 99 sorghum silage varieties, and 12 corn silage varieties were evaluated.  The report ( includes yield and forage quality data.

Feedlot Steer Performance in 2019

By Justin Waggoner, Ph.D., Beef Systems Specialist, Garden City

Each year I summarize the data from the K-State Focus on Feedlots in an effort to document annual trends in fed cattle performance. The Focus on Feedlot data for steers from 2019, 2018 and 2017 is summarized in the table below. In 2019, participating feedlots marketed 291,127 steers, approximately 58,000 fewer steers than were marketed in 2018. Continue reading “Feedlot Steer Performance in 2019”

“Early Weaning….It’s About the Cow”

By Justin Waggoner, Ph.D., Beef Systems Specialist, Garden City

Many cattle producers are weathering an exceptionally dry grazing season and may be considering early weaning calves. Many discussions about early weaning focus on managing lightweight calves with the benefits to the cow and the ranch becoming lost in the discussion. Continue reading ““Early Weaning….It’s About the Cow””