AWA Friday Newsletter - February 26, 2021

AWA Friday Newsletter - February 26, 2021 To receive our weekly newsletter in your inbox, contact the AWA office and request to be added to our email list.

VOL 2, NO 9

This winter has been a difficult one for many producers across the country. And if you’re in the cattle business you know as spring breeding season approaches getting your cow herd in shape is top of mind. There are a lot of great resources available to producers through their state extension offices. If you don’t know your area beef cattle extension experts I would encourage you to get to know them and take advantage of the resources they have to offer.

Below is an article on getting the nutrition of your cow herd in order before the breeding season starts. We thank Aaron Berger for letting us reprint this article here.

Importance of Cow Nutrition from Calving through Breeding
Aaron Berger, Nebraska Extension Beef Educator

For cow-calf producers, the last few months have been very challenging from a weather standpoint.  This has left many first-calf heifers and cows in less than optimum in terms of body condition at the time of calving. Weather conditions have also significantly depleted feed resources available as many producers have had to feed earlier and more than normal.

For cows to start cycling, conceive and maintain a 365-day calving interval, it is important that thin cows, those in a less than a body condition score of 5, be gaining weight from calving through breeding.  Cows in a body condition score of 5 or 6 need to be at least maintaining body condition during this time.  Now is a good time to assess both cow body condition and feed resources and develop a plan to provide adequate nutrition to meet cow needs.

Steps to Assess Current Conditions and Develop a Feeding and Management Plan
Body condition score cows, making note especially of higher risk females that may need additional energy and protein to meet nutrition needs.  Resources on cow body condition scoring can be found at the website.

Inventory feed on hand, noting both quantity and quality. Prioritize quality of feedstuffs to younger and thinner females. If possible, sort thin and adequate condition scores into different feeding groups.  This will help develop a feeding plan that will maintain cows in adequate body condition or will provide needed weight gain for thin cows prior to and through the breeding season.

When additional feed resources will need to be purchased to meet cow nutrient requirements, consider pricing them on a price per unit of protein and energy to find the best buy.  The Feed Cost Cow-Q-Lator is an Excel® spreadsheet tool that allows producers to compare different feed options to one another.

Identify ways to minimize feed waste and effectively utilize feed resources. If feeding daily, consider the use of the ionophore monensin to improve feed efficiency for cows.

The use of CIDRs (Controlled Internal Drug Release) on cows that are at least 20 days post calving can help initiate estrus in cows that are on an adequate plane of nutrition.

For thin, lactating, non-cycling cows, early weaning of calves can provide an effective way to drastically reduce cow nutrient requirements and also induce estrus.

Nebraska Extension has both Specialists and Educators who can assist producers with developing rations to meet cattle nutrient needs. Taking time to assess both cow body condition and feed availability can help producers develop an effective plan for a successful breeding season.

Reminder Spring CAR Inventory
Spring Herd enrollment is active now.  I want to remind members that each month the enrollment fee increases and encourage you to complete your enrollment online before fees increase on March 1st. The Spring Herd Enrollment fee schedule and deadlines are below.

•        $33 if enrolled between February 1 and February 28
•        $36 if enrolled between March 1 and March 31
•        $39 if enrolled between April 1 and April 30
•        $42 if enrolled between May 1 and December 31
Invoices to be paid prior to the last day of the following month or fees increase by $3 for each month past due.

Understanding Accuracy Value
Accuracy is an indication of how close genetic estimates are to an animal’s true genetic breeding value. Accuracy values are useful to breeders to determine the reliability of an EPD. Accuracy values range from 0.0 to 0.99, depending on the amount and quality of information that is known about an animal for any one of the reported traits. As the amount of information increases, the accuracy for that trait increases accordingly.
Learn More About Accuracy and EPD
Trait descriptions, how to read the EPD, information on accuracy, percentile rank tables and guidelines for the publication of EPD are all available, simply follow this link.

Whether you’re interested in something for yourself or a gift for your customers, we have several items to choose from. With each purchase you are helping support your association and proudly support this great Wagyu breed.

2021 AWA Annual General Membership Meeting and Conference

Share a Favorite Photo
We make lots of memories with family, friends and Wagyu cattle! What activities have you been up to on the farm? Send us a picture and we will choose one a month to feature in an upcoming newsletter! Please include your name and membership number and mail to

Advertise with the AWA
The American Wagyu Association offers many ways members can advertise their genetics and products through AWA services. These include Face Book, Premium Advertising Page, eBlasts, Classifieds, the Annual Breeders Guide and other opportunities. Contact the AWA office for more information or visit

Download our advertising fee schedule

AWA Calendar
April 1, 2021 – Annual Membership Renewal – Late Fees Apply
May 1, 2021 – CAR Fall Enrollment Starts

July 31, 2021 – CAR Fall Enrollment Deadline – Fees Increase Aug.
September 23 - 25, 2021 – Annual General Meeting and Conference, Fort Collins, CO

Upcoming Member Events
March 20, 2021 – Triangle B Ranch's 10th Annual Spring of Opportunities Sale
March 27, 2021 – Bowman Farms Complete Dispersion – At the Farm in Roaring River, NC
April 10, 2021 – M6 "Science is on our side" Dispersion – Alvarado, Texas
April 24, 2021 - The Steaks are High Sale – Tenroc Ranch, Salado, Texas
May 22, 2021 – Bar R Cattle Company Production Sale – Pullman, Washington
June 5, 2021 – Passion For Prime – Salina, Kansas
Oct. 23, 2021 – Vermont Wagyu Production Sale – At the Farm in Springfield, VT

To post an upcoming event or to advertise your event with a live link, please contact the AWA Office.

Helpful Links
Stockmanship & Stewardship
Beef Quality Assurance
Beef Improvement Federation
Ultrasound Technicians
Masters of Beef Advocacy

National Education Center for Agricultural Safety
Beef Cattle Community

Robert Williams, Ph.D.
Executive Director

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