Published on Wed, 12/28/2016 - 12:41pm
CattleMatch modernizes and streamlines cattle buying, selling process
Multifunctional, cloud-based platform takes cattle trading and sales management into the digital age
People have been buying and selling cattle in some form or another since the first bovine was domesticated over 10,000 years ago, but up until recently only modest advances to integrate modern technology into the cattle trading process have been made. CattleMatch changes this and takes the business of buying and selling cattle into the digital age.
CattleMatch is a new web-based marketplace that incorporates a combination of Internet-based business capability balanced with the tried-and-true methods that have always worked. As a comprehensive online resource, CattleMatch offers cattle buyers and sellers, ranchers, and other professionals in the cattle industry a more effective means to manage sales, inventory, genetics, and business relationships.
Designed by ranchers for ranchers, CattleMatch is a fully-operational, secure, online community and customizable cattle sales database. However, unlike other online-only cattle marketplace solutions, CattleMatch gives producers the freedom to choose how they do business, whether it’s online through their protected online processing partner, or offline, like customers have always paid.
Producers using CattleMatch have the opportunity to do business across all sectors of the cattle industry through a variety of sale options, including live and online auctions, private treaty sales, and display-only ads, all from the comfort of their own home. Additionally, CattleMatch’s features keep the busy life of cattle producers in mind, giving users the ability to manage multiple orders and grow their businesses across an expanse of markets, all within a single, cloud-based, simple and secure interface, so they can still have time to focus on the things that matter.
Cattle producers can quickly and easily import animal record files directly into the CattleMatch platform and create detailed individual and group animal profiles, including pedigree and EPD information. Sellers have ready access to a network of multiple buyers, while buyers simultaneously can easily view and compare multiple animals in multiple herds from across the country. In addition, cattle brokers, verifiers, ranch staff, and even veterinarians are able to create connections and transact business among a variety of partners they may never have known existed.
Through CattleMatch, producers and other ranching professionals have a distinct, unmatched opportunity for marketing and exposure, while keeping business on their terms, found nowhere else in the industry.
Red Angus DNA Scores Align with Carcass Results
Cattlemen and women frequently ask if DNA scores are truly predictive of phenotypic results. A recent study completed by the Red Angus Association gathered DNA data on a set of Red Angus calves and followed the cattle through harvest, collecting phenotypic data. The results illustrated the Igenity® DNA scores accurately predicted carcass weight, marbling score and overall carcass value.
The cattle were raised and owned by Bob and Elaine Yackley of Onida, South Dakota, and fed at a custom feed yard. A total of 91 head of 2015-born steers comprised the group that was DNA tested with Igenity Silver and followed through harvest to obtain carcass data on each individual animal.
The top 25 head with the highest DNA scores for Average Daily Gain (ADG) and marbling were compared to the bottom 25 head, which exhibited the lowest combined DNA scores for the same two traits. Summarized results for the two groups are shown in the table.
This comparative analysis reveals that the top-DNA-scoring steers produced heavier carcass weights as a result of faster rates of gain (21-pound advantage). They also had higher average marbling scores and higher quality grades, with notably more upper-two-thirds Choice grade carcasses.
Even in a softened fed-cattle market, the difference in value between the two groups was $50.60 per head favoring the high-DNA-scoring steers. Weight and marbling make a big difference when selling cattle on a grid.
“These cattle had the right combinations of genetics and management in addition to being fed to the correct endpoint,” explained Gary Fike, RAAA director of commercial marketing. “The fact that out of the 50 head in this comparison, there was only one Yield Grade 4 in the low-DNA group and none among the top-DNA steers, is a testament to that.”
Fike, who organized and conducted the field study, further noted that these results demonstrate how DNA can be successfully used in commercial operations. “This is real-world data,” he said. “By using DNA testing and eliminating low-scoring animals for the traits of interest, producers can be confident they are building superior genetic value into their herds. That is why we recommend testing all replacement heifer candidates and culling low-scoring females before breeding.”
The Red Angus Association of America serves the beef industry by enhancing and promoting the competitive advantages of Red Angus and Red Angus-influenced cattle. RAAA provides commercial producers with the most objectively described cattle in the industry by seeking and implementing new innovative technologies based on sound scientific principles that measure traits of economic importance.
For more information, visit redangus.org.
Top 4 Ways To Achieve Cattle Clipping Perfection
Whether you’re showing for the first time or have been grooming cattle for years, you need reliable tools that get the job done right.
How can you easily keep your clippers, trimmers and grooming tools working great all year round? Renowned Andis Grooming Educator Kirk Stierwalt says maintenance is key.
“I travel all around the country helping people of all ages acquire skills they need to put the ‘competitive edge’ on their side,” says Stierwalt. “I consistently find people don’t properly care for one of their everyday investments—clippers.”
Stierwalt shares a few of the maintenance tips and tricks he stands by to make sure his clippers and grooming tools are working perfectly whether he’s on the go, in the barn or getting ready for show season.
#1 Be Proactive
Taking the time and making a habit of maintaining your blades will save you time and money by not having to repair or replace your clipper blades.
As a national grooming educator for Andis Company, Stierwalt is a huge proponent for clipper maintenance because it also ensures the grooming and trimming experience will be the most comfortable and efficient for your cattle and you.
“For example, right now my go-to clipper is the Andis Pulse ZR™ Cordless Detachable Blade Clipper because its powerful, heavy-duty and now comes standard with the Andis Super Blocking UltraEdge® Blade.”
“I think of maintaining my tools like I think of maintaining my truck—I would never drive my truck for long periods of time without getting an oil change, rotating the tires or checking the filters. Your clippers are no different.”
#2 Oil Your Blades
The number one rule for keeping your clipper running smoothly is well-oiled blades.
You should oil your clipper blade every 30 minutes while in use. Start the cleaning process by removing excess hair from the blade using a soft brush. Then, apply Andis Clipper Oil on each side of the blade. Wipe the blade clean with a cloth or towel and you will be ready to get back to work.
#3 Care for Your Cords
Did you know that the cord is one of the most important parts on the clipper?
Whenever you’re using a corded clipper, like the Andis AGC Super 2-Speed or ProClip Excel™, it’s important to use proper positioning to prevent tangles.
Tangles that are bad enough can lead to shorts in the cord, which means wasted time, and nobody wants that, Stierwalt says.
According to Stierwalt, you should never wrap your cord around your clipper, as that can weaken the electrical connection in the tool and cause long-term performance issues.
His preference? Drop the cord over the back of your shoulder so the excess cord isn’t touching or dragging across your steer or heifer.
#4 Disinfect After Every Groom
Don’t forget to disinfect!
After every groom, spray Andis Blade Care Plus to disinfect, clean, cool and lubricate the blades. The 7-in-1 solution is Vitamin E-enriched—and prevents rust all at once.
“If you’re working in the heat or doing a large volume of cutting that results in your blade getting warm to the touch, I would recommend Andis Cool Care Plus,” says Stierwalt. “A hefty spray of Andis Cool Care will bring that blade temperature back to a comfortable level that won’t cause irritation for your animal.”
Great cattle grooming is only achieved with practice and great tools, making maintenance key to your success. You’ll be well on your way if you can remember these four things: be proactive, oil-oil-oil, care for cords, and disinfect!
Kirk Stierwalt lives in Leedey, Oklahoma, where he and his family own and operate Stierwalt Show Cattle, which for years has consistently sold champion show cattle across Oklahoma and the United States. Kirk also runs Stierwalt Show Cattle Clinics. These clinics have been very successful in helping people of all ages acquire the skills needed to put the “competitive edge” on their side. Along with these needed skills, Kirk’s clinics provide a wealth of knowledge including many techniques that have taken years of “being in the business” to learn. Participants have gone on from these sessions and received immediate and rewarding results on local and national levels. Kirk has judged numerous cattle shows and showmanship contests throughout the United States and has been an Andis educator for 10 years.