Thursday, February 13, 2014

Register now: 2014 Bull Breeding Soundness Clinics Begin March 5

Eldon Cole, Livestock Specialist
Headquartered in Lawrence County
Tel:  (417) 466-3102
MT. VERNON, Mo. -- Dates and locations for the spring “Bull Breeding Soundness Clinics” have been set according to Eldon Cole, a University of Missouri Extension livestock specialist. Cole will be at the area BSE clinics to answer questions related to beef cattle production in southwest Missouri.
“Bulls are a large investment and it pays to invest a small amount in the BSE test for insurance that your bull is capable of going out and breeding several cows in a 45 to 60 day breeding season,” said Cole.
The clinics give the veterinarians and their staff a day to devote primarily to BSEs.  Ed Trotter and Zoetis cooperate with the veterinarians to give clients a break on insecticides and vaccines during these clinics.
“There are limits on the numbers of bulls that can be evaluated each day so call ahead to schedule your time with the clinic staff.  If they’re full on that day they’ll be glad to give you an alternate time,” said Cole.
March 4 -- Southwest City Vet Clinic, Southwest City, Dr. J. Brian Shackelford, 417-762-5500.
March 5 – Barry County Vet Services, Cassville, Dr. Voyd Brown, 417-847-2677
March 11 – Animal Clinic of Diamond, Dr. Harold Haskins, 417-325-4136
March 12 – Dake Veterinary Clinic, Miller,  Dr. Chuck Dake, 417- 452-3301
March 13 – Countryside Animal Clinic, Aurora, Dr. Mike Bloss, 417- 678-4011
In addition to the basic BSE, testing bulls for trichomoniasis is available.  Hair or blood samples may be collected for DNA genetic testing through Zoetis.  In the past, they have offered this evaluation at a reduced rate.
“Genetic evaluation such as this can contribute to improving a bull’s EPD accuracy equivalent to him producing 10 to 20 progeny.   This enhances his EPDs and may also enhance his value if you plan to sell him,” said Cole.
As a rule, Cole says 10 percent or more of the bulls tested fail or are deferred for a re-test. 
“Since this winter has been extremely cold the percentage could be greater this spring.  Frostbite of the scrotum will be more likely than in the recent, relatively mild winters.  Semen, penile or other physical problems need to be discovered well ahead of bull turnout.  This allows cattle producers more time to search for a really good bull at the sales or private treaty,” said Cole.
For other details on the clinic, contact Cole at 417-466-3102.
For 100 years, MU Extension has engaged Missourians in relevant programs based on University of Missouri research. The year 2014 marks the centennial of the Smith-Lever Act, which formalized the Cooperative Agricultural Extension Service, a national network whose purpose is to extend university-based knowledge beyond the campus.
University of Missouri Extension programs focus on the high-priority needs of Missourians. Each county extension center, with oversight by locally elected and appointed citizens, is your local link to practical education on almost anything. More information on this topic is available online at


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