Division of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources
Fall sales dates scheduled for OQBN
OQBN will return to Cherokee Livestock (Oct. 29) and Elk City Livestock (Nov. 7) for the second straight year and will host a sale at South Coffeyville (Nov. 21) for the first time.
Other sales are scheduled for McAlester Stockyards (Nov. 4), OKC West (Nov. 5 and Dec. 3), Pawnee Livestock (Nov. 15), Blackwell Livestock (Nov. 22) and Tulsa Stockyards (Dec. 1).
OQBN is available to aid producers in making preconditioning decisions and capturing the value of preconditioned calves when it becomes time to market them, said Gant Mourer, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension beef enhancement specialist and OQBN coordinator.
“Last winter was challenging for many Oklahoma producers due to lack of rain, but portions of the state are benefitting from late spring and summer rains. Pasture conditions are in good shape and there have only been a few 100 F days,” Mourer said. “Producers are now deciding how to market calves this fall. Plenty of management options exist, and it may be worth it for producers to consider all the alternatives, some of which may have more value than even we anticipate.”
Established in 2001, OQBN is a joint effort between Extension and the Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association. At its core, OQBN provides improved communication among producers of all segments of the beef industry and allows for increased education while providing tools to improve access to value-added programs.
One way in which this is done is through the OQBN Vac-45 health verification program. After enrolling in the program, producers follow one of three health protocols and cattle meeting the management requirements are verified through Extension.
Once verified, cattle can be marketed as OQBN Vac-45 certified, and producers have the opportunity to market cattle in OQBN-certified sales as long as calves are weaned by the specified deadline.
OQBN benefits both buyers and sellers in several ways, including reduced shrink at auction, weight gain during the weaning period, increased market demands, improved immune system, decreased feedlot sickness and increased overall feedlot performance.
Also, along with healthier, heavier calves at the time of sale, sellers with OQBN-certified animals may earn higher prices per/cwt. In 2013, OQBN participants realized almost $9/cwt premium over cattle that had no weaning or health history. Light-weight calves realized a record high premium at more than $20/cwt.
“As cattle prices increase so does the risk and buyers are willing to spend $60-$70 more a head to decrease the risk of health problems on those calves,” Mourer said.
For additional information or questions about OQBN, sale dates and locations as well as wean dates, contact your local county Extension office or call or email Mourer at 405-744-6060 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional information also may be found at www.oqbn.okstate.edu.
Oklahoma State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, State and Local Governments Cooperating: The Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to all eligible persons regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age, disability, or status as a veteran, and is an equal opportunity employer.
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