Applying low-stress cattle handling techniques on the ranch will highlight the topics to be addressed August 16 during a field day at Rafter B Outfitters near Russell Springs. The operation is owned by Brent and Shelly Weinland. This will be the first of three ranch management field days presented by the Kansas Livestock Association and Kansas State University.
Veterinarian Lynn Locatelli of Benkelman, NE, will provide information about simple, low-cost cattle handling techniques that can be adopted on any farm or ranch. She is a partner in a veterinary consulting business with a focus on improving cattle performance and health through handling practices. Locatelli teaches the philosophy and experiences of Bud Williams, a world-renowned expert on low-stress animal handling techniques.
With the growth in grain-based ethanol production stimulating a larger supply of ethanol co-products, feeding distillers' grain to cattle on forage-based diets can be an economical opportunity. K-State Beef Cattle Specialists Chris Reinhardt and Twig Marston will give a presentation on feeding wet distillers' grains in beef cow and stocker operations. The two also will discuss the most effective way to store and handle the product.
Another educational session will focus on grass management. Identifying plant species that enhance native grass pasture is essential in determining stocking rates and grazing period. K-State Associate Professor Keith Harmoney will provide an on-site plant identification session and discuss management options to reduce undesirable plants and enhance the population of advantageous grazing forages.
Attendees also will have a chance to hear from Ramona cattle producer Tracy Brunner, who served on the industry-wide checkoff task force and the National Cattlemen's Beef Association checkoff study group. Brunner will discuss the task force proposal and field day participants will have an opportunity to provide feedback to KLA leadership.
The Russell Springs field day will begin with registration at 3:30 p.m. and conclude with a free beef dinner at 6:45 p.m. All livestock producers and others involved in the business are invited to attend.
Rafter B is located 1/8 mile east and 3/4 mile south of Russell Springs. Directional signs will be posted.
KLA and K-State also will host ranch management field days August 21 at JMR Cattle Company near Augusta and August 23 at Perry Ranch of Oskaloosa. Unique aspects of each operation will be incorporated into the educational sessions.
Bayer Animal Health and the Farm Credit Associations of Kansas are sponsoring all three events. For more information, go to www.kla.org or call the KLA office at (785) 273-5115.