Fescue

Discuss grasses and how to grow and harvest them.
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Re: Fescue

Post by Banjo » Tue May 28, 2019 9:57 pm

I think it was Kit Pharo that said they try to force out 10 to 15% of their cow herd every year.....by subjecting them to tough conditions.



That's my opinion.....feel free to make it yours.

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Re: Fescue

Post by Brookhill Angus » Tue May 28, 2019 10:24 pm

Banjo wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:57 pm
I think it was Kit Pharo that said they try to force out 10 to 15% of their cow herd every year.....by subjecting them to tough conditions.
Why not do the same with children. I saw a story once where a guy put his toddler out in a snow storm unclothed to see if he could make it. I think the authorities stepped in upon the kid’s behalf.

There is a herd near me, that for all practical purposes has to work overtime to stay alive, pasture as low as a putting green, thank goodness for the weeds and fence line brush to keep them going. They are alive, you can say that, but you probably wouldn’t bid jack sh.t for them in an auction ring. Maybe to buy them and put them out of their misery. Poor things. I look away as I drive past them.

Something tells me that they are on the “survival of the fittest” plan, and minerals are an afterthought.

Is this guy producing superior genetics through calorie deprivation and a anti-mineral/vaccine plan? Or is he producing dog 🐕 food?
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Re: Fescue

Post by Silver » Tue May 28, 2019 11:18 pm

sim.-ang.king wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:51 pm
kenny thomas wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:27 pm
Silver wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:22 pm
I would feed mineral if I had reason to.
So you feel you don't have the need to use mineral?
Looking at your cows and calves and weaning weights it's hard to argue. But maybe you could wean at 800lb if you used the good mineral. :hide:
According to BH if they ain't 900, they ain't nothin.
If my pairs could spend their 205 days together on lush tame pasture that would certainly be achievable. I’ve not handicapped myself by breeding Angus so sky’s the limit :lol:

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Re: Fescue

Post by Bright Raven » Wed May 29, 2019 5:39 am

Silver wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:22 pm
I would feed mineral if I had reason to.
That is a point worth expanding on. There are certainly environments where the soils and geological history provide all the essential nutrients. But they are rare indeed. Almost every environment is missing one or more essential elements for example , selenium occurs in extremely low levels here.

One advantage you have, it is like what I saw in Montana - you don't get the kind of extreme lush blossom of spring grasses we do in Kentucky. Where the grass is almost 90 % water. It is like "power washing" the GI tract. The weeks of lush grass and loose feces can decrease the uptake of minerals. Again, intake is what they consume. Uptake is what they absorb and get into the cellular level.

Since we are in an environment where there is low levels of Selenium, copper or magnesium to satisfy the essential needs of the biological functions, the cows health is going to be compromised and performance is going to suffer. In the case of some essential minerals like magnesium - they can die from grass tetany.

The Rocky Mountain area is a relatively young geological environment, rich in elements we have lost after 100s of millions of years of erosion and leaching.

This brings up a side note - regardless of culling there is no such thing as a mammalian biological unit that can carry on physiological functions without essential minerals. In example, there are no cows that have evolved a way to carry oxygen without iron. Culling cures some ills but it does not change the process of respiration and cellular function that is common to all life on the planet.
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Re: Fescue

Post by Brookhill Angus » Wed May 29, 2019 5:46 am

Bright Raven wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 5:39 am
Silver wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:22 pm
I would feed mineral if I had reason to.
That is a point worth expanding on. There are certainly environments where the soils and geological history provide all the essential nutrients. But they are rare indeed. Almost every environment is missing one or more essential elements for example , selenium occurs in extremely low levels here.

One advantage you have, it is like what I saw in Montana - you don't get the kind of extreme lush blossom of spring grasses we do in Kentucky. Where the grass is almost 90 % water. It is like "power washing" the GI tract. The weeks of lush grass and loose feces can decrease the uptake of minerals. Again, intake is what they consume. Uptake is what they absorb and get into the cellular level.

Since we are in an environment where there is low levels of Selenium, copper or magnesium to satisfy the essential needs of the biological functions, the cows health is going to be compromised and performance is going to suffer. In the case of some essential minerals like magnesium - they can die from grass tetany.

The Rocky Mountain area is a relatively young geological environment, rich in elements we have lost after 100s of millions of years of erosion and leaching.
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Re: Fescue

Post by Banjo » Wed May 29, 2019 5:59 am

Brookhill Angus wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 10:24 pm
Banjo wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:57 pm
I think it was Kit Pharo that said they try to force out 10 to 15% of their cow herd every year.....by subjecting them to tough conditions.
Why not do the same with children. I saw a story once where a guy put his toddler out in a snow storm unclothed to see if he could make it. I think the authorities stepped in upon the kid’s behalf.

There is a herd near me, that for all practical purposes has to work overtime to stay alive, pasture as low as a putting green, thank goodness for the weeds and fence line brush to keep them going. They are alive, you can say that, but you probably wouldn’t bid jack sh.t for them in an auction ring. Maybe to buy them and put them out of their misery. Poor things. I look away as I drive past them.

Something tells me that they are on the “survival of the fittest” plan, and minerals are an afterthought.

Is this guy producing superior genetics through calorie deprivation and a anti-mineral/vaccine plan? Or is he producing dog 🐕 food?
I'm not promoting PCC... but they have done a great job marketing their grassfed bulls on very little inputs. And their policy of forcing out 10 to 15% of the herd is basically culling those that don't breed back on time or raise a great calf. More of us need to do that I'm sure.
We should all take a comprehensive forage sample occasionally that showed the levels of essential nutrients in our forage.
I've never done it but am going to.

That's my opinion.....feel free to make it yours.

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Re: Fescue

Post by True Grit Farms » Wed May 29, 2019 6:11 am

Bright Raven wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 5:39 am
Silver wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:22 pm
I would feed mineral if I had reason to.
That is a point worth expanding on. There are certainly environments where the soils and geological history provide all the essential nutrients. But they are rare indeed. Almost every environment is missing one or more essential elements for example , selenium occurs in extremely low levels here.

One advantage you have, it is like what I saw in Montana - you don't get the kind of extreme lush blossom of spring grasses we do in Kentucky. Where the grass is almost 90 % water. It is like "power washing" the GI tract. The weeks of lush grass and loose feces can decrease the uptake of minerals. Again, intake is what they consume. Uptake is what they absorb and get into the cellular level.

Since we are in an environment where there is low levels of Selenium, copper or magnesium to satisfy the essential needs of the biological functions, the cows health is going to be compromised and performance is going to suffer. In the case of some essential minerals like magnesium - they can die from grass tetany.

The Rocky Mountain area is a relatively young geological environment, rich in elements we have lost after 100s of millions of years of erosion and leaching.

This brings up a side note - regardless of culling there is no such thing as a mammalian biological unit that can carry on physiological functions without essential minerals. In example, there are no cows that have evolved a way to carry oxygen without iron. Culling cures some ills but it does not change the process of respiration and cellular function that is common to all life on the planet.
Might as well add middle Florida into your nutrient rich geological area. The largest herd of cattle in the country at 44 thousand head has no mineral program and a few other ranches that only run 5 to 10 thousand head have no mineral program. So it must be a phenomenal nutrient rich area also. What doesn't work for some works for others.
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Re: Fescue

Post by Bright Raven » Wed May 29, 2019 6:19 am

True Grit Farms wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 6:11 am
Bright Raven wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 5:39 am
Silver wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:22 pm
I would feed mineral if I had reason to.
That is a point worth expanding on. There are certainly environments where the soils and geological history provide all the essential nutrients. But they are rare indeed. Almost every environment is missing one or more essential elements for example , selenium occurs in extremely low levels here.

One advantage you have, it is like what I saw in Montana - you don't get the kind of extreme lush blossom of spring grasses we do in Kentucky. Where the grass is almost 90 % water. It is like "power washing" the GI tract. The weeks of lush grass and loose feces can decrease the uptake of minerals. Again, intake is what they consume. Uptake is what they absorb and get into the cellular level.

Since we are in an environment where there is low levels of Selenium, copper or magnesium to satisfy the essential needs of the biological functions, the cows health is going to be compromised and performance is going to suffer. In the case of some essential minerals like magnesium - they can die from grass tetany.

The Rocky Mountain area is a relatively young geological environment, rich in elements we have lost after 100s of millions of years of erosion and leaching.

This brings up a side note - regardless of culling there is no such thing as a mammalian biological unit that can carry on physiological functions without essential minerals. In example, there are no cows that have evolved a way to carry oxygen without iron. Culling cures some ills but it does not change the process of respiration and cellular function that is common to all life on the planet.
Might as well add middle Florida into your nutrient rich geological area. The largest herd of cattle in the country at 44 thousand head has no mineral program and a few other ranches that only run 5 to 10 thousand head have no mineral program. So it must be a phenomenal nutrient rich area also. What doesn't work for some works for others.
Florida would not be an area that I would expect to be "mineral" rich. It is primarily ancient limestone as the parent material or bedrock.

It also is a function of vegetation. Some forages pull up and concentrate minerals in the plant material.
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Re: Fescue

Post by True Grit Farms » Wed May 29, 2019 6:27 am

Feeding good mineral to deer is proven to make their antlers grow. The biggest racked bucks in the country are in the Midwest? And the smallest racked bucks call Florida their home? Some things in life just don't add up.
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Re: Fescue

Post by Ebenezer » Wed May 29, 2019 7:16 am

Fire Sweep Ranch wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 8:23 pm
This is MY picture I took and sent to the extension. Notice the seed heads look like mouse poop:

Image

We are known to have the HOTTEST (infected) fescue around! The extension is right down the road from us, and they test their fescue often (for studies and such).

Ebenezer, funny you should mention the Graham Angus program. If it is the same, they sold out in the drought, I think 2012? We bought a cow calf pair online, because they were cheap. The cow made it ONE year before she shipped her for infertility, and the heifer calf on her side lasted just two calvings (she was a fescue cow for sure! Always in the pond, did not lose hair). We have a half blood cow, grandaughter from the orignal cow. She seems to be fine and throws an AI calf each fall. One of my best.
Graham stopped for a multitude of reasons. Their final years were based on heavy outcrossing to breed leading bulls and the herd lost a lot including adaptation and fertility. "Terminal" has a meaning and an affect. Then a lot of the family was sick or dead. And in the big picture the cattle were an interest but merely a minor fraction of the businesses. The one downfall they had was that few if any bulls were ever collected and when the fertility was gone they had to resort to buying in heifers.

I choose to learn from the history of others than to repeat their steps so I study programs and lines. At one time they were the top of their game and folks paid well to get their animals. Sometimes I wish I could turn back time and pick up a few to see if they were as good as they seemed. But in reality it is sift the wheat and throw away the chaff. :|

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Re: Fescue

Post by Fire Sweep Ranch » Wed May 29, 2019 9:31 am

Ebenezer wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 7:16 am
Graham stopped for a multitude of reasons. Their final years were based on heavy outcrossing to breed leading bulls and the herd lost a lot including adaptation and fertility. "Terminal" has a meaning and an affect. Then a lot of the family was sick or dead. And in the big picture the cattle were an interest but merely a minor fraction of the businesses. The one downfall they had was that few if any bulls were ever collected and when the fertility was gone they had to resort to buying in heifers.
Now that I remember, we paid $1000 for the pair, she was a TC Freedom daughter, and her days old heifer calf was advertised as a "BC Big Daddy", which was a new, hot Angus bull of the time. When the papers arrived, the calf was registered as a SAV Pioneer, but I was never told she had a different sire. Many years later, and this heifer had two AI sired calves for me, AAA sent us a letter with a notice that her papers were pulled. I am guessing that the calf was DNA'd before selling and did not test to the sire (why else would they change it years later)? They pulled her papers, I think. When I search for her registration on the AAA web site, it comes back empty (17000030 - GRAHAMS PIONEER 97A), but I can find her dam (15724444). I can find her on the ASA herdbook (https://herdbook.org/simmapp/action/ani ... r=2722173), since we registered two of her half blood calves. Sad thing is, we sold her to slaughter before we got the AAA notice, and she had a bull that was sold for breeding and we have her daughter (sired by Beef Maker) still producing in our herd (she has had 4 calves for us, and will have her 5th this fall). So, the simm daughter is still half angus, we just do not know a quarter of that half (sire)....
I heard the paperwork on the Graham cattle was a mess! Lots of people ended up with something different than advertised. We made money on it, since the cow sold a few years later for the purchase price (sold her as a bred in a special cow sale - she was a huge cow that would not stick to AI for us so we sold her) and we had her daughter still. The cow seemed fine on the fescue, it was the daughter (the Pioneer) that struggled with fescue. She came in open at 3 and raising her second calf, so she went to the stockyards (no bull exposure, just AI attempts).
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Re: Fescue

Post by SmokinM » Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:00 pm

BR that is some pretty impressive mineral intake/cost numbers. Is that free choice year round using it as your high mag in the spring? Your forage quality I am sure helps that but still pretty good.

For those clipping fescue what height do you find works best for regrowth and grazing utilization? For the first time in a long while with our new farm I have more grass in my pastures than in my hay field.

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Re: Fescue

Post by Bright Raven » Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:18 pm

SmokinM wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:00 pm
BR that is some pretty impressive mineral intake/cost numbers. Is that free choice year round using it as your high mag in the spring? Your forage quality I am sure helps that but still pretty good.

For those clipping fescue what height do you find works best for regrowth and grazing utilization? For the first time in a long while with our new farm I have more grass in my pastures than in my hay field.
Thank you. The intake is above the expected intake provided by VitaFerm. The recommended intake is .4 ounces per head per day. Some of that excess that I am experiencing is waste.

I keep it available year round.
I use VitaFerm Heat from June 1 until September 1
I use VitaFerm Concept-Aid 8/S from September 1 until January 1
I use VitaFerm Concept-Aid Hi Mag from January 1 until June 1

I clip at about 7 inches above the ground. The following picture does not capture the quality of the forage on the farm. This is the best forage I have seen since I bought the farm in 2003.
Image
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Re: Fescue

Post by SmokinM » Sat Jun 01, 2019 9:12 pm

Thanks I am going to check into that mineral. Those fields do look great.

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Re: Fescue

Post by kenny thomas » Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:39 pm

I have clipped maybe 25 acres so far that hasnt had a cow on it since early April. Clipping the seedhead down to 10-12" and trying to get as little of the leaf as i can.
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