A new vaccine against BRD

A new vaccine against BRD (Bovine Respiratory Disease) in cattle combines two popular vaccines, a combination that helps protect against both viruses and bacteria associated with BRD. Brett Terhaar, Technical Consultant with Elanco adds that the vaccine is what producers and veterinarians were wanting.

Audio: Brett Terhaar, Elanco (2:55 mp3)


Harvesting fuel after the corn is out

There’s a ton of useful material left behind the combine. Actually it’s millions of tons, and much of that leftover crop residue in fields comes in handy as nutrients and cover in minimum tillage systems. But not all of it needs to be left behind. Matt Darr, an associate professor in the Ag and Biosystems Engineering Department at Iowa State University, has some interesting numbers about the logistics necessary to harvest corn stover for biomass fuel production. For instance, to support a 25 to 30 million gallon plant takes plenty of stover. And a car with decent mileage can roll 1,000 miles on the fuel produced by a bale of stover.

Several facilities produce ethanol on pilot scale now, but both POET and DuPont plan to be producing on a commercial scale this year. Darr thinks they’re on to something.

AUDIO: Matt Darr (3 min. MP3)

Getting your haying equipment ready for another season

It won’t be long before we’re back in the hay fields for another season.  Of course time is money when making hay, so we asked CLAAS product manager Matt Jaynes for some tips on getting those mower-conditioners ready to go.

AUDIO: Matt Jaynes (3:00 MP3)

Good times for cow-calf producers

Cow-calf producers Tom and Paula Peterson farm near Waverly, Nebraska, just north of Lincoln in the southeastern part of the state.

The Peterson’s recently hosted USDA deputy secretary of agriculture Krysta Harden when she visited Nebraska to promote the start of sign-up for USDA’s livestock disaster assistance programs.  During a break in the action, we visited with Tom Peterson about his cattle business.

AUDIO: Tom Peterson (3:00 MP3)

Lower feed and fertilizer costs

We continue our conversation with Jerry Doan who runs a large cow-calf, grazing and cash-crop operation in North Dakota. Several years ago he took steps to improve the health of his soil including planting a cover crop of a dozen different plants which he then grazes in the winter. He says last year he saved $150 per cow on winter feed cost plus he saves on fertilizer when planting the corn or sunflower cash crop.

AUDIO:Doan talks about the savings 3:08 mp3

Weed management strategies

Mark Loux, Extension weed specialist at Ohio State University says a cold, wet start to spring could change weed management strategies. Typically for some farmers, the weed contral strategy is to get out early and apply residual herbicides when weeds are small, for those who made a fall application the strategy may be to wait a little longer, but in the end, Mother Nature is in control.

Mark Loux, Extension weed specialist, Ohio State University (2:55 mp3)


To insure, or not to insure

Scott Gerlt with the Food and Ag Policy Research Institute leans toward the side of taking advantage of crop insurance. The pluses and minuses are many, but it’s prudent to do homework before deciding what’s best for a specific operation.

AUDIO: Scott Gerlt (3 min. MP3)

Hoping for spring rains in central Nebraska

Tim Scheer raises corn, soybeans and cattle near the town of St. Paul in central Nebraska.  Scheer says the year is starting off very dry and even though irrigation is widely used in that area, he would like to have some moisture to get crops up and growing this spring.  And, as Scheer explains, the pastures need rain even more than the crop ground.

AUDIO: Tim Scheer (3:00 MP3)

Lower winter feed costs & healthier soil

Jerry Doan is the fourth generation to run the Black Leg Ranch at McKenzie, North Dakota. His great-grandfather homesteaded what is now a cow-calf, custom grazing and cash crop operation. Several years ago Doan began to focus on soil health which led to planting a blended cover crop which he then grazes in the winter months. Doan says not only are they increasing the biologic activity in the soil but are reducing winter feed costs on the cattle as well. They then direct seed a cash crop in the spring.

AUDIO:Doan talks about his experience 3:05 mp3

Strategies for success

Every five years Purdue Unviersity’s Center for Food and Agricultural Business releases their Large Commercial Producer Survey.  Mike Gunderson, associate director for the research center says the survey compiles data into four categories; producer strategy, loyalty, buying preferences, and information and the salesperson.

Gunderson tells Brownfield this is the first time they’ve asked producers about their strategies and the results were narrowed down into five strategies for success.

AUDIO: Mike Gunderson, Large Commercial Producer Survey (3:00mp3)