GFM Network News


Lupine.

Beware of toxic plants in pastures

There are many toxic plants in Western Canada cattle producers need to steer clear of

Different regions have different problem plants, and to make it even more confusing these same plants are only toxic if eaten in certain amounts or in certain stages of growth, while others are toxic at all times. Rachel Turnquist, a forage extension specialist in Saskatchewan, says there are many toxic plants in Western Canada. You […] Read more

Low-stress weaning for calves

A less stressful weaning process makes for healthier calves

Weaning time has traditionally been traumatic for calves, mama cows and ranchers, but it doesn’t need to be. “There are better ways to wean calves, says Bart Lardner, a beef and forage research scientist at the University of Saskatchewan. “Abrupt weaning is the most stressful, for both the cow and calf. The question has been […] Read more


Animal care is ongoing at the Lifv

New name and facilities for Western Beef Development Centre

A new facility at the University of Saskatchewan includes both cow-calf and forage research

There are changes afoot at the Western Beef Development Centre (WBDC) including a new name, additional locations and increased research, teaching and outreach capacity. On April 1, 2018, the Western Beef Development Centre, a division of the Prairie Agricultural Machinery Institute (PAMI), rolled into the University of Saskatchewan’s Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence (LFCE).WBDC […] Read more

Most of the attention for antibiotic use in the beef industry is focused on the feedlot sector, but antibiotic use at the cow-calf level is also important.

Antibiotic use on Canadian cow-calf operations

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Antibiotic use records are important for producers who want to track the effectiveness of the antibiotics they use. Industry groups need antibiotic use data to refute misleading claims about our production practices. Even restaurant chains and meat companies marketing “antibiotic-free” beef need records to keep treated animals out of their “never-ever” supply stream. When it […] Read more


When should they go?

Make the best decision you can for the time

We all want to sell our cattle at the best times and in ways to make the most money, but just when is that. The short answer is, it depends. “Breeding can be easily scheduled — as a day on the calendar when you turn the bulls out with the cows,” says Joe Stookey, a […] Read more

Appearances are deceiving when it comes to water quality as evidenced by the sulphate levels in these 2016 samples: 1,731 mg/l in jug 1; 2,056 mg/l) in jug 2; 21  mg/l in jug 3 and 15 mg/l  in jug 4.

Use caution when testing livestock water quality with hand-held meters

Study compared test results of hand-held meters to laboratory results

Livestock and feed specialists with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture have learned that not all methods of testing water quality are equal, especially when it comes to total dissolved solids and sulphates. Leah Clark, livestock and feed extension specialist with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, took part in a study comparing the accuracy of water […] Read more


Drylotting cows and calves is one way to hold onto your genetics during a drought.

Culling cattle for drought

Age is not the only factor you may need to consider

Many ranchers who tried to feed through a drought without selling cows have said they will never do it again. You can slip too far into debt borrowing money to buy feed in a bad year. It’s often better to sell early, before feed grows short and cow condition falls. But there are ways to […] Read more

Vet college’s full accreditation survives funding cut

The looming exit of one of its major funding partners notwithstanding, the University of Saskatchewan’s Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) has earned full accreditation through 2024. The American Veterinary Medical Association’s (AVMA) Council on Education, the accrediting body for veterinary colleges in North America, recently confirmed Saskatoon-based WCVM’s status as “Accredited (w/minor deficiency).” “Minor […] Read more


A notice cancelling the water rights of an Alberta cattle producer was discovered to have been sent in error.

Water rights dominate Western Stock Growers’ Association meeting

Associations: News Roundup from the April 2018 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

The status of historic water rights for Alberta ranchers dominated the 2018 annual meeting of the Western Stock Growers’ Association February 21 in Red Deer, Alta. Newly re-elected WSGA president Aaron Brower introduced the topic after running a two-month battle with provincial officials to avoid the cancellation of his water rights application that was filed […] Read more

Comment: An opportunity for youth

It’s not often you hear from a pulse processor when you go to a cattle convention, but Murad Al-Katib isn’t any pulse processor. Starting with one pulse processing facility in Saskatchewan he has built AGT Foods today into an operation with plants in Canada, the U.S., Turkey, Australia, China and South Africa and more than […] Read more