Best ways to manage beef cattle in late summer

Published 6:20 am Wednesday, October 3, 2018


Ag Notes

Here are some beef management tips:

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Keep a good mineral mix available at all times.

Do not give up on fly control in late summer, especially if fly numbers are greater than

about 50 flies per animal. You can use a different “type” of spray or pour-on to kill any resistant flies at the end of fly season.

Avoid working cattle when temperatures are extremely high, especially those grazing high-endophyte fescue. If cattle must be handled, do so in the early morning.

Provide shade and water. Cattle will need shade during the hot part of the day. Check

water supply frequently — as much as 20  gallons may be required by high producing cows in very hot weather.

Cattle may also be more prone to eat poisonous plants during periods of extreme temperature stress. They will stay in “wooded” areas and browse on plants that they would not normally consume. Consider putting a roll of hay in these areas and/or spraying plants like purple (perilla) mint, which can be toxic.

Select pastures for stockpiling. Remove cattle and apply nitrogen. Stockpiled fescues

can be especially beneficial for fall-calving cows after calving.

Take soil samples to determine pasture fertility needs. Fertilize as needed this fall.

Jerry Little is the Boyle County extension agent for Agriculture/Natural Resources.