Showing posts from October, 2017

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Dr. Jamie Courter is your Mizzou Beef Genetics Extension Specialist

By Jared E. Decker Many of you have probably noticed that things have been a lot less active on the A Steak in Genomics™   blog, but you probably haven't known why. In January 2021, I was named the Wurdack Chair in Animal Genomics at Mizzou, and I now focus on research, with a little bit of teaching. I no longer have an extension appointment. But, with exciting news, the blog is about to become a lot more active! Jamie Courter began as the new MU Extension state beef genetics specialist in the Division of Animal Sciences on September 1, 2023. I have known Jamie for several years, meeting her at BIF when she was a Masters student. I have been impressed by Jamie in my interactions with her since that time.  Dr. Courter and I have been working closely together the last 6 weeks, and I am excited to work together to serve the beef industry for years to come! Jamie holds a bachelor’s degree in animal science from North Carolina State University and earned a master's degree in animal

TRC Field Day: The Most Important Trait in Beef Cattle Selection?

What is the most important trait in beef cattle selection? Watch Jared Decker's presentation from the Thompson Research Center Field Day to find out. Loading...

AHA Educational Session: Hereford Leading the Industry

Jack Ward AHA Executive Vice President Kevin Oschner was the consultant helping with the AHA Strategic Plan. Oschner interviewed: Hereford breeders Seedstock producers from other breeds Commercial cow-calf producers Bull stud and reproduction professional Extension service personnel Auctioneer Packers They also sent a survey to all AHA membership. They had 518 participants from 43 states. Oschner then organized the information. Webinars were then held with the board of directors. They then had a 2 and a half day session to create the strategic plan. They also brought in outside thought leaders, which included John Lundeen, NCBA Joe Pawlak, Technomics John Butler, Beef Marketing Group Mitch Abrahamsen, Ph.D., Recombinetics Clint Schwab, Ph.D., The Maschoff's Mitch Abrahamsen Recombinetics The consumer is interested in how their food is made. The consumer can use social media to reach through to the food provider (McDonalds, Subway, Walmart, etc.). The

AHA Educational Session: Maximizing Profit

Trey Befort AHA Director of Commercial Programs Brent Lowderman Carthage Livestock, Inc. Case Gabel  Hereford Advantage Program is a genetic merit feeder cattle program which looks at the bull batteries going into commercial programs. A commercial producer using Hereford bulls sends in the registration numbers for their bull battery. The Hereford Advantage Program then shows, compared to breed average, where these bulls sit. This is used to market the calves. Lowderman In 2003, John Meents approached Lowderman about having a Hereford influenced cattle. They started with 150 head, and last year they had over 800. Calves need to have two rounds of shots. Needs to be castrated and dehorned. They then break the calves into lots based on 100 pounds increments to group them into similar lots (steers between 450 and 550 pound, between 550 and 650, etc.). Heifers are broken into lots by 75 pound breaks. The Hereford sale is within 1 to 3 dollars of the Angus influence

TRC Field Day: How Have Quality Premiums Changed with Lower Cattle Prices?

Scott Brown, MU Extension agricultural economist , discusses the premiums for cattle with Prime grades. Can cattle that grade Prime be a risk management strategy? Recorded at the MU CAFNR  Thompson Research Center Field Day, September 21, 2017. Loading...

Update on Structure EPD Development

NBCEC Brown Bagger presentation by Bob Weaber Kansas State University Longevity can help offset the cost of developing or purchasing replacement females. Structure is an economically important trait. Dairy cattle have done a better job measuring and creating genetic predictions for feet and leg structure. There has been a moderate genetic relationship with type traits and longevity and functional longevity (Dekkers et al. 1994). The Australian Angus Association has looked at the genetics of feet and legs. They now have EBVs for front angle front claw rear angle read claw rear leg rear view rear leg side view There are currently no genetic evaluations of feet and leg traits in u.S. beef cattle. The American Angus Association is actively collecting data to create EPDs for these traits. Weaber and colleagues were able to get funding from Kansas State University, Red Angus Association of America, and American Simmental Association to look at over all structure of animals. The

TRC Field Day: Winter Nutrition for Beef Cows

Eric Bailey, MU Extension beef nutrition specialist , discusses winter nutrition for beef cows. One of the practices that we see commonly in Nebraska, but less so in Missouri, is grazing corn stalks. Dr. Bailey discusses opportunities and limitations of this practice. Recorded at the MU CAFNR  Thompson Research Center Field Day, September 21, 2017. Loading...

Show-Me-Plus™ Heifers to Sell in Joplin

The Southwest Show-Me-Select™ Replacement Heifer Sale will be November 17th, 2017 at 7 PM at the Joplin Regional Stockyards. Video preview and sale may be viewed at and DVAuction on-line bidding may be arranged in advance. A Show-Me-Plus™ heifer is a registered or commercial heifer that has genomic predictions. For a registered heifer, this means she has GE-EPDs. For commercial heifers, it means she has been tested with a DNA panel providing genomic predictions. The following lots contain Show-Me-Plus™ heifers. DJV Cattle Co. , Edwards 573-345-3404 15, Angus and Angus cross heifers; all heifers have been GeneMax tested which qualifies them as Show-Me-Plus; all are synchronized and AI bred to calve on February 20; our first SMS sale. Service Sire Breed CE/ Acc WW/ Acc Milk/ Acc YW/ Acc $W AI – GAR Prophet Angus 11/ .91 72/ .96 33/ .86 124/ .95 $92.42 Goo

TRC Field Day: Sex-Sorted Semen

Jordan Thomas, a PhD candidate in David Patterson's group, presented on the use of sex-sorted semen in the beef industry at the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources Thompson Research Center Field Day. Loading...

Calving Ease and the Law of Diminishing Returns

By Darcy Vial USDA FSA Oregon via Wikimedia Commons Written by Tom Brink RAAA CEO Reprinted from the Red Angus eNews - October 4, 2017 Calving ease is especially important in first-calf females, and is therefore something we pay close attention to when breeding virgin heifers. In fact, calving ease considerations usually rank first on the list when selecting bulls to use on heifers.   Red Angus bulls often see service on heifers thus, mapping the relationship between calving ease EPDs (CED) and unassisted births is a worthwhile task. The better Red Angus breeders understand this relationship, the better selection and mating decisions they can make for themselves and their customers. The curved line shown in the chart below was statistically derived from tens of thousands of Red Angus calving records stored in the RAAA database. All of the calvings are from first parity females bred to bulls ranging from -8 to 20 for CED. This line captures the “average” or “typic

Reverend Bayes and Cattle Breeding

Reverend Bayes via Wikimedia Commons You are asking yourself, who is Reverend Bayes and what does he have to do with cattle? The answer to this question will answer a major misconception in cattle genetics. Reverend Bayes was an 18th century Presbyterian minister. He was also trained in logic. Due to Bayes’ work on probabilities, an approach to statistics called Bayesian statistics is named after him. In Bayesian statistics, we start with a prior belief (prior probability). As more information and data are gathered, we update this prior belief. We call this new update a posterior belief. We continue this process as we collect additional data. Further, a key tenant of Bayesian statistics is evaluating the methods (i.e. models) used in our analysis. Statisticians and scientists did not frequently use this system of statistics in the early 20th century. But, with increased computing power, Bayesian statistics has become very popular in the 21st century. By Lutz Koch CC BY-NC-ND

Brownfield: Gene by Environment Cattle Research

Last week I had the opportunity to speak with Julie Harker of Brownfield Ag News. Head over to Brownfield Ag News to listen to our conversation. At Mizzou, we are working to create new tools that will stack the deck for farmers and ranchers to be more sustainable. That sustainability includes environmental stewardship, social responsibility, and, perhaps most importantly, profitability. Thanks to Julie for taking time to conduct the interview and publish it!