cattle

Corinne Boyer / Kansas News Service

GARDEN CITY — Ali Abdi usually cuts meat at the Tyson plant in Holcomb, and was at the plant when a fire broke out and destroyed part of the structure.

He didn’t see it as he and the other workers evacuated, but, he said, “Yes, I was scared.”

Abdi, a Somali refugee who moved to Garden City five years ago, is one of several employees cleaning up the damage. Tyson hasn’t said when the plant will reopen — it could be months. And that uncertainty has a ripple effect on area feedlots, livestock drivers, Garden City itself and even Garden City Community College.

A cattle slaughterhouse and feedlot near Powell Gardens says has closed instead of keeping up a drawn-out legal battle over its planned expansion.

Presidio County is one of 22 in the state that still abides by open-range laws that allow cattle to roam, more or less, where they want. That means it’s perfectly legal for cattle to wander onto any unfenced property. But a 1980 “estray law,” which applies statewide, allows sheriffs to collect unidentifiable cattle. But that conflicts with the open-range laws in those counties. Now, Presidio County Sheriff Danny Dominguez has asked Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton to settle the dispute.

Courtesy of Della Rambo

GARDEN CITY — Three years ago, rancher and farmer Jay Young got intrigued by a YouTube video.

A North Dakota farmer championed the idea of cover crops — plants that would be considered weeds in many other contexts — as robust plants for his cattle to graze on.

Corinne Boyer / Kansas News Service

GARDEN CITY — Nearly all American cattle spend their final months in massive feedlots, munching on feed designed to fatten them for slaughter.

But not all that goes into the beasts transforms to beef.

Their four-chamber-stomach digestive systems continually seep all forms of gasses, including the powerful greenhouse gas methane they burp up silently and constantly.

Brad Churchill, a slaughter operations manager at Cargill Meat Solutions, has worked in the cattle industry for more than 30 years. He’s seen many employees injured by cattle.

“A young man did nothing to provoke this 1,600-pound angus steer who turned on him in an instant,” Churchill said of one incident last year. The man crawled through an escape hatch and only had a dislocated shoulder and few fractured ribs.

From Texas Standard:

Raising cattle anywhere is hard, but it’s especially hard in the Rio Grande Valley. And that’s thanks to fever ticks. They can spread a fatal disease that decimated cattle herds through the 1900s and is still feared today. And it’s not just the ticks themselves that can cause headaches, but the regulations designed to control them.

Emergency Grazing Begins In Drought-Stricken Kansas

Jul 18, 2018
USDA

Cattle producers in drought-stricken Kansas counties may now cut hay or graze on land normally set aside for conservation.

If you’ve spent your life in the city, maybe you’ve never experienced the smell near a dairy farm, cattle feedlot or a newly fertilized field.

The world’s largest meatpacking company, JBS, shrunk last week due to selling off its massive cattle feedlot operation — the most recent asset that the Brazil-based company has sold after becoming mired in multiple corruption scandals.

Creative Commons

Hurricane Harvey didn’t just devastate human lives; the storm likely killed thousands of head of livestock as well.

As Texas Standard reports, the full effect of the hurricane on the cattle industry in Texas won’t be known for some time.

CC0 Public Domain

If you’ve ever wanted your own cow, or more specifically steak, a new crowdfunding website could be just the thing for you.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

A federal investigation has been launched into the alleged embezzlement of $2.6 million by an employee of an obscure state board that promotes the beef industry, money created by a mandatory government program funded by farmers and ranchers.

Flickr

Cattle prices will likely continue to decline in 2017, as cattle inventories across the country will continue to expand.

cultura rf / Getty Images

When it comes to greenhouse gases, there’s one frequent contributor that may not have crossed your mind: belching cows.

Vasily Fedosenko / Reuters/Quartz.com

Now that the election is over, we can get back to focusing on what’s important in the world. According to Quartz.com, there’s a new device available that allows cows to text message their farmers when they’re pregnant.

Wikimedia Commons

Beef and poultry operations nationwide are keeping a close eye on a ballot measure in Massachusetts, Politico reports.

The state ballot initiative, known as “Question 3,” would essentially ban inhumane confined animal-feeding operations. The law would require giving farm animals enough space to lie down, stand up, extend their limbs and turn around in their pens.

Kristofor Husted / Harvest Public Media

From Harvest Public Media:

We all learned it as kids: Old MacDonald has a farm and on that farm he has a cow that says “moo.” But why? Why do cows moo?

Whenever I’m out reporting in the field I can tell many ranchers have a powerful connection with their cattle – they can almost understand them. But researchers today are trying to figure out exactly what cows are saying.

Grazing Management Benefits Livestock & Wildlife

Dec 29, 2015
Scott Bauer / USDA, NRCS

Good grazing management is good for the livestock producer and for wildlife.  When grazing-land is healthy, cattle put on the weight, and birds benefit from healthy grassland. The key is designing a grazing system that fits a producer's climatic conditions, soils, topography and vegetation types.

Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media

Deborah Clark and her husband Emory apply the principles of holistic ranch management, and they use managed intensive grazing on their stocker cattle operation on 14,000 acres in north-central Texas.

Cattlemen take steps to prevent pinkeye

May 17, 2015
MU Extension

Last summer was a bad one for pinkeye in this part of the country.  The million dollar question is can anything be done to prevent it this summer?  The High Plains Journal reports there are vaccination programs, but there are also numerous strains of the disease.

Ranchers Beef Up Cattle Herds

May 13, 2015

Cattle prices and the possibility of a break in the drought has a Texas Panhandle family changing gears reports the Wall Street Journal. Rex McCloy and his two sons used to focus on growing cotton, corn, wheat, and soybeans. Now the family is betting the recent break in drought conditions will continue, and they’re investing in cattle. McCloy says three years ago there wasn't enough grass to feed a goat, let alone a cow. Now the family is building up the herd to capitalize on high cattle prices and lower feed costs.

Texas Beef Council focuses on young eaters

Nov 30, 2014
texastribune.org

The Texas Beef Council is turning its attention to attracting younger eaters.  The Texas Tribune reports beef consumption is down.  Gone are the days of Fred Flintstone rib eye slabs that were common in the 1970s.

Quentin Hope

After getting pummeled by drought and low cattle prices, many ranchers across the Midwest are eager to grow their herds. As they do, grass is turning into a hot commodity.

On Sept. 9, BJ Holloway's life savings were stolen. Six cows worth about $10,000 were taken in the dead of the night from his land in Spencer, Okla.

BJ started raising cows when he was just a teenager. His parents gave him the first two, and he raised those until they had calves he could sell off to buy some more. Over the years, he kept doing that, breeding the cows and selling off the little ones. Raising cows is a business for BJ, and all of his savings are wrapped up in them, which made the theft of the cows absolutely devastating.

"Beef checkoff" is a national program that funds beef promotion and research. Texas ranchers recently voted in favor of increasing participation in the program by an overwhelming majority.

Jeremy Bernfeld/Harvest Public Media

The U.S. cattle herd has changed dramatically over the last four years, largely thanks to drought.

The supply of beef has been in free-fall. Perhaps you’ve noticed sky-high prices for hamburger and steak.

Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media

Drought is re-shaping the beef map and raising the price of steak. Ranchers are moving herds from California to Colorado and from Texas to Nebraska seeking refuge from dry weather. And cattle producers in the Midwest are making the most of it.

Drought still taking toll on ranchers, beef prices

May 22, 2014
Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media

California ranchers, despite near-record beef prices, are shrinking their cattle herds in response to one of the most severe droughts the state has ever faced, and many Western ranchers are taking advantage.

Flickr Commons / Niels Linneberg

Few people connect craft breweries with cattle feed. But passing along the spent grains from the brewing process, like barley and wheat, to livestock ranchers is a common practice. Although now, that relationship could be in jeopardy.

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