Winter Weather Update: Cows losing weight and bull fertility concern
We are following the impact of the recent severe winter weather on cattle across the country.
Wind chills coming in well below zero for parts of the nation, cold for us, and very cold for the cows outside.
An eastern Iowa producer tells Brownfield Ag News his cattle are not eating and drinking as much, so they are not putting on weight. Warmer weather is on the way for some areas this week, but winter has just begun.
Producers should continue to monitor their livestock’s eating and drinking habits while making sure to stock up on feed if possible and keep water sources unfrozen.
Along with the fear of malnourishment in cold weather also comes concerns over bull fertility.
Not eating enough and frostbite can both affect a bull’s reproductive organs and even if livestock do not appear to be affected, that does not mean there is not a problem. Ranchers should check for damage to reproductive health 40 to 60 days after the worst of the cold weather passes.
It is also important to schedule bulls for breeding soundness exams at least two months before the start of the breeding season, especially after this type of winter.