5 Tips for Beef Cattle Reproduction and Breeding

Cattle were once employed for various purposes, including meat, milk, and labor. Cattle producers produce beef cattle to provide meat and variety of use like any other by-products; it’s just good business. Most cattle graze on steep, mountainous, dry, or rocky grassland unsuitable for erecting buildings or cultivating crops. Cattle are raised in various climates and environments worldwide because they can survive on low-quality rangeland feed and grasses.

Cattle bred worldwide are various. It is only last few decades when previous types combined, while some breeds have existed for centuries. Size, color, markings, temperament, weather tolerance, and hair length are all characteristics of each breed. Many beef cattle producers are now paying a premium for the luxury of being in the cattle business, but a few innovative operations adjustments could greatly boost profit potential. Improved herd management and reproductive performance selection can significantly boost the calf crop percentage.

But how can you start with this kind of business? What are the main criteria before engaging in beef cattle production? Luckily, this article is for you! Here are the top 5 beef cattle reproduction and breeding techniques you need to consider before engaging.

Artificial Insemination

They promote high-health replacement options employing Artificial Insemination (AI) in the cattle industry to improve genetics. The development of a progeny test system and subsequent use of milk production records as an objective performance measure. These are selected to superior bulls, and techniques for freezing semen and liquid nitrogen storage refrigerators aided the global adoption of AI for genetic improvement in dairy cattle.

Increased use of AI in beef cattle has resulted from the development of objective systems such as EBVs to measure economic traits in beef cattle (e.g., growth rate, carcass conformation, composition, feed conversion efficiency), and thus more accurate sire selection and control of the estrous cycle.

Producing a highly specialized frozen sperm is processing. Maintaining semen quality necessitates meticulous attention to detail at each phase. The capacity of a bull’s sperm to freeze varies. Semen with good motility and morphological quality, on the other hand, usually freezes well. The best outcomes are attained when sperm is treated in a properly equipped laboratory by competent employees at an AI center.

Calving Season Management

The most important management decision on a cattle farm is establishing a controlled calving season. You may need to start from 180-day breeding season to a 120-day, down to 90-day, and finally, a 60-day breeding season when establishing a controlled calving season. Under specific management settings, a 56-day mating season could be feasible.

The calf crop percentage is influenced by the season or time of year calves are born and should be determined by the available fodder availability, labor, and market for the calves. Cows that calve 30 to 60 days before the peak of grass production wean more calves than cows that calve at other times of the year.

Calving in the late fall may be an option if good-quality winter grazing is available. Cows who have spent the winter on hay and short pasture will have a better chance of calving in the late winter or early spring.

Supplementation Procedure

Many factors influence the success of a rebreeding effort. The cow’s condition and the feeding level following calving are the essential factors at the calving time. The inadequate pre-calving diet may lead to a lower-body condition score and a longer time between calving and first heat. After calving, a lower calorie intake leads to a lower conception rate in the early heats.

After calving, it’s very difficult to rebreed a first-calf heifer. Like mature cows, heifers are more likely to breed back at the same time due to the rigors of lactation and growth, which can produce a 120-150 day delay between calving and first heat. After giving birth and a heifer is still thin, she may not regain heat during the breeding season. To ensure proper feeding, heifers must breed first before mature cows.

Mineral Management Program

One of the most ignored beef cattle’s calving areas is mineral nutrition. Make sure you’re giving your animals a good mineral program all year, not just during calving or before breeding. Minerals are especially critical 60 to 90 days before calving because they affect the quality of colostrum, calf trace mineral status, and calf health.

Cattle mineral aids tissue repair by assisting the cow’s reproductive system recover from calving and preparing for breeding. It is difficult for the cow to rebred if not fully healed. Cows get the nourishment they need to flourish all year long with a good year-round supplementing program, regardless of the forages available. Before calving season and during breeding, a balanced cattle mineral is the best option.

Pregnancy Check

Examine all cows and heifers for pregnancy once the breeding season is over. Heifers bred, then cows. That’s why cattle producers can check them early. Rectal palpitation after 35 to 90 days, if using ultrasound, may take after 30 to 90 days, or blood analysis after 30 days can all be used to check for pregnancy in heifers. Many farmers choose to palpate cows when weaning the calves in the fall. 

Experts treat the cows for their grubs, lice, and internal parasites. At this point, cows should be about 150 days pregnant. Although there is a lesser possibility of getting a precise breeding date by palpation at this time, distinguishing pregnancy is easy for the inexperienced palpator.

A qualified, experienced individual should perform the pregnant palpation – generally a local large-animal veterinarian. To become competent at diagnosing pregnancy status, you’ll need to understand the architecture of the female reproductive tracts and the physiological changes that occur during various stages of pregnancy. Because feeding efficiency can be enhanced when similar animals are grouped and sorted, a regulated calving season allows the management to better care for both heifers and older cows in groups.

Final Takeaway

Beef cow production can be a lucrative farming venture; few beef cattle operations are the same, delivering producers various options for creating a tailored program for their lifestyle and agricultural business. This quick overview touches on a few factors to consider when starting a beef cattle business. Seek help from websites online or experienced beef cattle producers in your area before starting your own business. 

Happy breeding! And always remember, it’s just good business!

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