Calves can experience poor nutritional absorption if removed from milk too early.

Rumen development critical for young calf health

Supplements and management can help develop the rumen to allow nutrient transport

Reading Time: 3 minutes Keeping calves longer on milk helps ensure the rumen is developed well enough to absorb important nutrients. By the time ruminants are weaned, it’s imperative that rumen epithelia are functioning optimally to ensure the proper absorption of volatile fatty acids (VFA) into the blood stream. Why it matters: Better absorption of nutrients after weaning means […] Read more

WLPIP calf price insurance deadline extended

Three-week extension includes nine purchasing days

Reading Time: 2 minutes Cattle producers in the western provinces will get extra decision-making time this year on the calf price insurance available through Western Livestock Price Insurance (WLPIP). The Prairies’ Crown ag insurance corporations announced Thursday that the deadline to buy WLPIP calf price insurance for 2020 has been extended to June 18. The new deadline, reset from […] Read more

Research shows curious calves retain that trait.

Is your calf shy or a risk taker?

Studies confirm different personality traits

Reading Time: 3 minutes Glacier FarmMedia – People working with cattle often recognize different personality types among individuals. There are the friendly calves, the shy ones and the curious types. Research from the University of British Columbia has been able to quantify personality types among dairy calves and that knowledge could improve their welfare. Why it matters: If researchers […] Read more

Calves that receive adequate colostrum within the first two hours of life are given the best start.

Success with beef starts at the calf level

A veterinarian says farmers cut back on animal health as a cost saving

Reading Time: 5 minutes Glacier FarmMedia – Calf health is the No. 1 priority for success on a beef operation. The top third of producers invest the most in genetics, nutrition and animal health. They do not cut back on feed because they do not want calves to lose weight, said veterinarian Joe Gillespie of Boehringer Ingelheim. Why it […] Read more

Calves at Hogendoorn dairy enter individual housing with a rail feeder at about one week of age.

Lots of options for automated calf feeding

Calves on two farms started differently before moving to individual rail feeding

Reading Time: 3 minutes Producers have options when it comes to managing calves while using automated feeders, whether the animals are in group housing or individual housing. Why it matters: There are many different ways to manage calves through the same feeding system – what’s important is the calves are healthy and growing well. At Hogendoorn Dairy and Markvale […] Read more

Bovine respiratory disease is the leading cause of sickness and death in newly received feedlot calves.

Preconditioning gives calves better start when entering feedlots

Calves that are properly vaccinated, given protein-rich feed and taught to use a waterer before leaving home tend to better manage feedlot stress

Reading Time: 3 minutes Bovine respiratory disease is the leading cause of sickness and death in newly received feedlot calves. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure for these youngsters that may be immuno-compromised after weaning and transportation. “When you look at the entire North American feedlot industry this disease alone and the losses associated with […] Read more

Farmers will have to examine how practical it is on their farms to provide several feedings of cow transition milk to their youngest calves.

Calves benefit from mother’s post-colostrum milk

University of Guelph study identifies ‘bio-actives’ in days two to four of lactation

Reading Time: 3 minutes Taking newborn calves completely off colostrum after one or two feedings may contribute to future health challenges, according to as-yet-unpublished research by the University of Guelph’s Department of Animal Physiology. Instead, explained Associate Professor Dr. Michael Steele in the annual webinar series of the US-based Dairy Cattle Welfare Council (DCWC), it might be advisable to […] Read more

Calves with strong suckling reflex are 41 times more likely to consume enough colostrum soon after birth.

Producers should ensure calves suckle quickly after birth

Dystocia increases the chances that a calf will nurse on its own so producers may have to intervene

Reading Time: < 1 minute If it sucks, that’s a good thing — when it comes to newborn calves. It’s so good, in fact, that newborns with a good suckle reflex are 41 times more likely to consume colostrum on their own compared to calves with a weak suckle reflex. Dr. Craig Dorin of Veterinary Agri-Health Services in Airdrie, Alta., […] Read more

A pair of calves try out the solid feed in the group housing barn at Bolton Manor Holsteins, operated by the Jackson family near Thamesford.

Choosing calf housing options

Dairy Focus: There are strengths to both individual and group housing facilities for calves

Reading Time: 6 minutes Individual housing in hutches remains “the gold seal for health,” said a dairy farmer who recently switched to group housing for calves. But he insists the health drawbacks are manageable, and made the switch anyway for other reasons. “Labour savings? Big plus. Animal welfare? Big plus,” declared Oxford County’s Thomas Jackson, who moved his calves […] Read more

Beef Farmers of Ontario designs profitability calculator

Calculator will estimate cow-calf producer finances based on herd and production practices

Reading Time: < 1 minute Beef Farmers of Ontario (BFO) has recently launched a cost of production calculator to help Ontario beef farmers determine how much they spend to produce their cattle. Production practices on Ontario beef farms vary significantly, and that means nailing down cost of production has been difficult. Creating useful numbers has been challenging and historically have […] Read more