Tri-County Beef and Forage Workshop set April 20
The drought may be over — maybe not — but the effects of it are still changing the beef cattle business, said a Texas AgriLife Extension Service county agent.
“Our producers are facing things that they’ve never faced before,” said Aaron Low, AgriLife Extension agent for Cherokee County. “And we may even see another summer like we did last year.”
To help East Texas beef producers deal with new issues, Low and AgriLife Extension agents in Smith and Rusk counties are hosting the “Tri-County Beef and Forage Workshop,” set April 20, at the Tri-County Livestock Market, 23733 Highway 79 N., New Summerfield.
Some of the new issues producers may have to manage for this year are higher input costs, historically high costs for replacement heifers and what forages to grow if there’s another drought, Low said.
And it’s a near certainty that they will have to learn to identify and control new, highly invasive weed species brought in with hay purchased out-of-state, he warned. All these subjects and more will be covered at the workshop.
Low said thanks to sponsorship by Boehringer Ingelheim, Heritage Land Bank, and East Texas Seed Co., he and his AgriLife Extension colleagues have managed to keep the registration fee for the workshop down to only $10 and still provide lunch.
“So it’s also an inexpensive way for those with private pesticide applicator licenses to earn CEUs,” he said.
Participants will earn three continuing education units, two in the general category and one in integrated pest management.
Participants must RSVP by April 16, however, to attend the event. To RSVP and register, call the AgriLife Extension office in Cherokee County at 903-683-5416.
Sign-in on April 20 will begin at 8 a.m., with the formal program beginning at 9 a.m. The program will conclude at 2 p.m.
Another topic that will be completely new to many East Texas producers is the establishment of summer annual forages such as pearl millet and sorghum-sudan grasses, Low said. Summer annuals are considered more drought-tolerant than the improved Bermuda grasses commonly grown.
“There are a number of varieties that are suitable for East Texas that we’ve never utilized because of our usually plentiful rainfall,” he said.
The speakers and their topics will include:
- “Weed Control for East Texas Pastures,” Shane Colston, Winfield Solutions, Tyler.
- “Cattle Market Outlook,” Dr. David Anderson, AgriLife Extension economist, College Station.
- “Animal Health Following the Drought of 2011,” Kelly Cross, Boehringer Ingelheim, Tyler.
- “Forages: Replant Strategies,” Andy Young, East Texas Seed Co., Tyler.
- “Forage Options and Alternative,” Dr. Vanessa Corriher, AgriLife Extension forage specialist, Overton.
23733 Highway 79 N.
New Summerfield, Texas