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NDSU to hold 3rd Annual Angus University

April 25, 2014
Pierce County Tribune

The North Dakota Angus Association once again is partnering with North Dakota State University's Carrington Research Extension Center for the third annual North Dakota Angus University (NDAU) calf feed-out program.

"The second annual NDAU project was held with great success in the summer and fall of 2013," said Chanda Engel, livestock research specialist at the center.

One hundred and eighty-two head of yearling and fall steer calves were consigned in the feed-out program at the center. According to Engel, the program provides two major benefits: Producers receive valuable information on their cattle's feedlot performance and the center is able to use the steers in a feedlot research trial that generates valuable information to benefit North Dakota cattle feeders.

"No treatments are imposed that would reduce performance of the animals," Engel said.

In the 2013 feed-out program, cattle gained an average of 4.6 pounds per head per day, had a feed efficiency of 6.50 pounds of feed intake (dry matter) per pound of live weight gain, and had a dressing percentage of 62.9 percent, with 87 percent grading choice or better.

Mike Wendel from LaMoure consigned cattle both years of the program and has been pleased with his calves' results in the NDAU trials. He has been able to use information generated from the program as a benchmark comparison in his herd.

"Not only did we get the carcass data back from the cattle we had at the university, but we also did a carcass and profit comparison to the calves we had there against the calves we kept at home," Wendel says. "I think that was a huge bonus for us. We compared our rate of gain and carcass performance. It was a nice, unbiased comparison, and the whole process has been very educational."

Angus University would be a viable option for cattle producers interested in gaining a better understanding of how Angus-sired cattle from their operation perform in the feedlot, Engel said. Producers also will learn about quality grade and the potential profitability available through retained ownership.

Participants in the NDAU will receive periodic progress reports on their calves' performance, as well as a final report on the overall performance, efficiency and carcass traits for their calves.

Producers who consign cattle pay the feeding costs based on the average cost of gain, veterinary costs and a modest yardage charge. The center holds these fees until the cattle are marketed. At marketing, the center deducts all applicable fees from the sale price without an interest charge.

The animals selected for the feed-out program should weigh 800 and 900 pounds and be consigned in multiples of four. The cattle should be delivered to the center's feedlot the first week of June.

To consign a group of cattle or for more information, contact Engel at 652-2951 or, or Wendel at 710-0425.

Burke Teichert Keynote Speaker for NDSU Ranching Workshop

Strategic planning, setting goals, evaluating economic efficiency, marketing and controlling finances are among the skills ranchers need to succeed in the cow- calf business.

The North Dakota State University Extension Service is holding a Business of Ranching workshop June 13 to help early career ranchers and others gain the knowledge they need. The workshop will be held from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at NDSU's North Central Research Extension Center south of Minot.

BEEF magazine columnist Burke Teichert will be the keynote speaker for the event. Drawing on his expertise and experience, Teichert will share his ranch planning ideas and discuss how to organize ranches to be cost-effective and successful.

He was raised on a family ranch in western Wyoming. His work history includes serving as a university faculty member, cattle reproduction specialist and manager of a number of large ranches. Before retirement, he was manager for seven of the ranches owned by Deseret Land and Cattle.

Teichert will open the workshop with his approach to planning strategically for success, which is to use a production system that controls operating and overhead costs. He also depends on ingenuity and inventiveness to maximize the value of soil, sunlight and rainfall. Components he will discuss include the right cows, scheduling the herd, managed time-controlled grazing, simplicity and flexibility, continued marketing and analysis.

He also will speak at a second session that focuses on essential information such as decision-making tools, keys to success and reasons ranches fail.

Other workshop presenters are:

Steve Metzger, North Dakota Farm Business Management instructor, Carrington

- He will discuss the cost of owning cows and equipment, using information obtained from ranches participating in the financial analysis program and his considerable experience in helping producers evaluate their cow-calf enterprises. Metzger will review profit potentials, and production and financial benchmarks, to help participants set business goals and targets.

Dwight Aakre, NDSU Extension farm management specialist

- He will explain how producers should determine and evaluate the associated operating and depreciation costs in a ranch. High equipment and breeding stock costs will be a challenge to manage and control, he said.

Ryan Larsen, an assistant professor in the NDSU Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics

- He will speak on the capital and financing requirements of ranching businesses. Sources of borrowed money, debt structure and appropriate debt level are all critical to business success. Larsen will share guidelines on how finance and debt should be evaluated and managed.

Ray Erbele, a rancher in the Streeter area and an active partner in the Napoleon Livestock Auction

- He will share his thoughts on how to strategically produce for the market and capture value. He says that managing cow-calf operation profitability requires continued focus on marketing to manage price risk and maximize value.

Amber Boeshans, livestock development specialist for the North Dakota Department of Agriculture

- She will talk about the goal of increasing and diversifying the state's livestock and dairy industries by providing support to producers, commodity groups, producer cooperatives and processors.

For more information on the workshop or a registration form, visit or

The cost of attending the workshop is $75. That includes a break and lunch. The first 40 people to register will receive a $50 reimbursement through a grant from the North Dakota Corn Council. The registration deadline is June 6.

Make checks payable to the NDSU Extension Service, Ward County, and send registrations to Paige Brummond, Extension agent, at NDSU Extension Service, Ward County, P.O. Box 5005, Minot, ND 58702-5005.

- Submitted By

Yolanda Schmidt,

NDSU Extension Service



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