GFM Network News



Steer clear of fatigued cattle syndrome

Animal Health with Roy Lewis, Dvm

A few years ago cattle from an Amer­ican feedlot went down during transport to a packing plant and others developed severe lameness. This condition was eventually labelled fatigued cattle syndrome and became a huge animal welfare issue due to the appearance of severely lame, non-ambulatory cattle. Initially beta-agonists were incriminated but numerous studies have essentially […] Read more


Untreated pinkeye in cattle can be costly

Reduced weight gain on calves means fewer marketable pounds

It’s a funny thing about walking among beef cattle — I tend to catch things that I wouldn’t otherwise see by staring at them from a truck. Take spotting cattle with pinkeye for instance. The other week, I was walking along with the feedlot manager after the feedbunk was filled. Most of the beef finishers […] Read more

Tips to help cattle cope with summertime heat stress

If cows and calves aren't eating, overall performance and weight gains are down

I always feel sorry for beef cattle in an open field that cannot escape the hot summer sun. The other day I was driving a pasture with about 30 Black Angus cows and spring calves. Not a tree or waterer in sight. All the animals were crowded together, none were grazing and their calves were […] Read more


VIDO-InterVac awarded funding for new cattle vaccines

Bovine tuberculosis and Johne's disease targeted for vaccine development

Work to develop vaccines against two diseases that attack the lungs and intestinal tracts of cattle has received a $2.9 million boost from Genome Canada to co-fund research at the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization-International Vaccine Centre (VIDO-InterVac) at the University of Saskatchewan. Bovine tuberculosis affects the lungs of cattle and bison, and wild species […] Read more

A Colorado low you say – only in Manitoba

Understanding heat stress in beef cattle and the 'thermal neutral zone'

There is a great deal of newsprint these days about the relative merits of a “Colorado High,” a subject I will leave readers to explore on their own. In May, however, Manitoba residents were introduced to a “Colorado Low,” an intense weather system that moved up from North Dakota and Montana over the Victoria Day long […] Read more


Heavier calves are typically backgrounded over the winter at higher rates of gain and destined for finishing in the spring.

Stepping up the energy for newly weaned calves

In the September issue we discussed formulating rations for backgrounding cattle and focused on the importance of targeting performance. The take-home message is, if one wants to target a specific rate of gain regardless of the class of cattle you are feeding, a nutrition program needs to be developed that meets the nutrient requirements of […] Read more

Laboratories can test your grain or forage samples if you suspect mycotoxins are present in your feed.

Are mycotoxins hiding in your feed supply?

When it comes to feed quality, we usually think in terms of nutritional properties such as energy, protein or mineral content. There are, however, other feed characteristics that have an impact on quality, one of which is mycotoxin contamination. Depending on crop type, environment, location, harvest and storage management, there are a wide variety of […] Read more



Calf on pasture with an eye problem developing.

The full cost of pink eye in cattle

Cure the pain as well as the losses


Pink eye or, more properly, infectious bovine keratoconjunctivitis (IBK), ranks high on the list of most expensive cattle health issues. The impact in lost weight gain alone is substantial. For pre-weaned calves, pinkeye is the second most costly disease, behind scours. One study showed a 17 pound (lb.) loss when one eye was affected and […] Read more