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An interactive forage species selection tool for Canada

The Canadian farms producing top-quality beef are as unique as our country’s topography. They do have one thing in common--each uses forages in some way. 

Forage U-Pick--a tool that helps farmers and ranchers from British Columbia to the Maritimes choose forages best suited to their fields, calculate seeding rates and manage forage weeds--is now available online at no cost.  

“Selecting forage species that will thrive under the growing and management conditions of a specific field on your farm improves the crop’s productivity. Since well-managed forage is typically the cheapest source of feed, growing productive forages can widen the profit margins of a beef operation,” shares Amy Higgins of the Maritime Beef Council.  

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How to increase profit by improving calving distribution

Video: How to increase profit by improving calving distribution

Calving distribution has been shown to have one of the biggest economic impacts on cow-calf operations. The industry recommendation for calving season length is 63 days for cows and 42 days for heifers. This shines light on breeding management beyond a pregnancy rate. While high pregnancy rate is desired, there are potential economic losses if producers don’t have 60% of their cows calving in the first 21 days.

The BCRC’s Value of Calving Distribution Calculator allows producers to see their current calving distribution and their short-term economic benefit of moving to the industry target of 60-25-10-5 (60% of females calving within the first cycle, followed by 25% calving between 21-42 days, 10% between 42-63 days and the remaining 5% calving in the fourth and final cycle) or a condensed breeding season of three cycles.