STEELMAN: Beef herd sires breeding

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Beef Herd Sires Breeding Soundness Exams Offered

Don't miss this opportunity to get a complete check-up on your bull(s) before this year's breeding season! Bull Soundness Exams (BSE) are the most inexpensive and under-utilized form of securing pregnant cows. During the past four years local producers have had the opportunity to participate in these BSE clinics. Over sixty herd sires have been tested with 25% of these bulls either failing or potential problems have been identified during their exam. This signaled producers a need to change their herd sires and/or alter their breeding season before a bigger problem occurred, open females. Taking into account current market prices, can you afford open females?

The Soundness Exam will be held on Saturday, March 16th at the Woodbury Livestock Market. The exam will include vaccinations, deworming, physical examination, semen check by Dr. Mandy Willis, Large Animal Vet.. The event is sponsored by Pfizer, Cannon/Dekalb County Farmer's Co-op, Woodbury Livestock Market, Cannon County Cattlemen's Association and UT Extension (Cannon/Coffee/DeKalb /Warren).

Reasons to participate in the upcoming BSE include;

1) Utilization of a BSE has the potential to return at least $20 for each $1 invested in the procedure. A bull may be big and masculine in appearance, but may not be a satisfactory breeder. A BSE provides the best evaluation of the bull's reproductive potential. Normally, a BSE should be done at least 45 to 60 days before the start of the breeding season. For the breeding season starting May 1, the BSE should be done between March 1 and March 15.

2) Bull fertility affects the pregnancy rate, average calving date, average weaning weight, uniformity of calf crop and age of puberty in replacement heifers - all of which have a significant effect on economic importance.

3) Bull scrotal circumference is positively related to both bull and heifer puberty as well as semen quality. This is largely a genetic issue.

4) Past Cannon County BSE exams have shown that 15-20 percent of bulls have problems which adversely affect fertility.

The entire exam will be performed at a cost of $40.00/bull. Jennie Schutte, Territory Manager for Pfizer, will deworm and vaccinate those bulls participating in the breeding soundness exam.

If you are interested in taking advantage of this opportunity, please call Dr. Willis to schedule an appointment to bring bulls in for testing. (931-409-3178).

All programs conducted by the University of Tennessee Agricultural Extension Service are conducted on a nondiscriminatory basis without regard to race, color, national origin, age, sex, disability, Religion, veteran status or other legally protected categories.

If you need more information call the Cannon County Extension Office at 563-2554.

Bruce Steelman

614 Lehman Street

Phone:  615-563-2554


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Bruce Steelman
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