Cattle needs rise as temperatures drop


By Donald Stotts, The Claremore Daily Progress (OK)

Feb 16, 2021


STILLWATER, Okla. – Cattle producers need to follow recommended livestock-care checklists to mitigate significant dangers that arctic blasts bring to animal health and production, said Oklahoma State University experts.


Ranchers might not typically think about frozen water sources during a mild winter, for example.


So it’s important to remember that cattle in southern Great Plains states are relatively naïve when it comes to the presence of ice in the field, said David Lalman, OSU Extension beef cattle specialist and holder of the university’s Harrington Endowed Chair in Animal Science.


“Calves, yearlings and young cows may never have experienced ice-covered water sources, so they’re more likely than older cattle to walk into the middle of a pond as a group,” he said. “Breakthroughs can be a disaster and possibly even fatal. Keep the water open or move them to a less risky situation such as an automatic water tank.”


Other OSU Extension cold-weather recommendations include: