Decide sooner

Decide sooner

Decide Sooner by Justin Sexten, Ph.D. While many of you are in sire buying mode this time of year, more are deciding whether this year’s bull calves retain the ability to become sires. Castration at birth is ideal, but catching them on day one can be a challenge in...
Calving seasons of the mind

Calving seasons of the mind

Calving seasons of the mind by Justin Sexten, Ph.D. Winter came early for much of cow-calf country, and now calving season is at the gate. Even those who call it “spring calving” often start in January, but if you’re not out checking a heifer, this is a good time of...
Cause and effect

Cause and effect

Cause and Effect by Justin Sexten, Ph.D. We sometimes associate cause and effect without knowing the real link, or as an academic buzz phrase has it, “correlation does not equal causation.” A quick search provides a humorous example. Did you know ice cream sales and...
Balance vs. the trade-off

Balance vs. the trade-off

Balance vs. the trade-off by Justin Sexten, Ph.D. One of the big challenges of livestock judging is explaining “balance” to a new evaluator. As we attend county fairs, state previews and junior nationals, we’ll hear the term used to describe cattle in nearly every...
Weaning diet options

Weaning diet options

Weaning diet options by Justin Sexten, Ph.D. Spring calving herds, depending on rainfall and temperatures, may be weeks or months away from weaning. For many operations, that will bring the challenge of feeding weaned calves for a short transition period. That’s when...
Better than average

Better than average

Better than average by Justin Sexten, Ph.D. Few producers strive for average—from cow productivity to cost reduction, we all want to be better than that. Yet half of every herd is below its own average, so the bar we compare against is important for context. As the...