Beef Cattle Online Course

$ 800.00 $ 595.00


Product Description

This course introduces students to the fundamentals of beef cattle management including husbandry, breeding, production, feed lots, herds and more.  It aims to help students analyse and make informed decisions about the management requirements of beef cattle. You should be able to describe and explain the principles and practices of beef cattle husbandry and management.

Course Aims:

  • Describe the nature and scope of Beef Cattle Production.
  • Compare different beef production systems
  • Discuss beef cattle breeding and its significance to production.
  • Develop a sound, but general introduction to animal health.
  • Describe significant parasites that infect cattle and determine appropriate management of these and related problems.
  • Recommend appropriate provision of feed for commercial beef production.
  • Develop a management strategy for a commercial beef herd.
  • Explain feed lot management for beef production.
  • Explain Stud herd management for beef production.
  • Determine significant management requirements for a beef production enterprise, in order to attain and sustain a viable economic performance

Course Outline

There are 10 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction to beef cattle and beef cattle breeds
    • The role of beef cattle in agriculture
    • Scientific classification
    • Examples of breeds worldwide
    • British Beef breeds – Angus, Hereford, South Devon, Sussex, Red Poll
    • U.S. Developed Beef breeds – Santa gertrudis, American brahman, Amerifax, Beefmaster
    • European Beef breeds – Salers, Charolais, Simmental, Gelbvieh
    • Australian Beef breeds – Braford, Beefmaster, Droughtmaster, Murray Grey, Australian Lowline
    • South African Beef Breeds – Salorn, Tswana, Tuli, Africkander,
    • Breed selection c0nsiderations – horned vs poll, colour, gestation length, birth weight, mothering ability, post weaning growth, meat quality etc
  2. Beef Cattle Production Systems
    • Various systems of production – extensive, intensive, semi-intensive
    • Choosing a suitable system – considerations include size, climate, soils, transport, markets, etc.
    • Cattle handling facilities
    • Materials used in cattle handling
    • Cattle identification – branding, ear marking, tattooing, ear tags
    • De-horning – chemical and mechanical methods
    • Castration, dips and dipping, and injecting cattle
  3. Beef Cattle Breeding
    • Heritability, performance testing, progeny testing, selection
    • Pure versus cross-breeding – advantages and disadvantages
    • Calving percentage
    • Management factors to improve calving percentage
    • Weaning Calves
    • Factors affecting calf weaning
    • The anatomy of the male reproductive system
    • The physiology of the male reproductive system
    • Fertility problems in the male
    • The anatomy and physiology of the female reproductive system
    • Fertility problems
    • Pregnancy and parturition
    • The structure of the mammary glands
    • Secretion of milk
    • Growth and development
    • Post-natal growth
    • Compensatory growth
  4. Diseases in Beef Cattle – Viral and Bacterial
    • Determining health status of the animal
    • Signs of a healthy animal
    • Causes of ill-health
    • Injury, poor nutrition, poisoning, parasites, hereditary conditions. etc.
    • Preventing ill-health
    • Correct feed and nutrition, insect control, parasite control, vaccinations, control stress, etc.
  5. Parasitic and Other Diseases in Beef Cattle
    • Some parasitic diseases
    • Other ailments of cattle – actinobacillosis, anaplasmosis, arthritis, beef measles
    • Poisoning, Pink eye, Milk fever, bloat etc
  6. Nutrition in Beef Cattle
    • Feed type – Roughages and concentrates
    • Carbohydrates, protein, fats
    • Grass or grain feeding
    • Rations for beef cattle – maintenance or production rations
    • Maintenance rations
    • Procedure for calculating a ration
    • Suppementary feeding of protein
    • Lot Feeding
    • Minerals
    • Common macromineral deficiencies
    • Common trace mineral deficiencies
    • Diagnosis of trace mineral deficiencies
    • Vitamins
    • Water for farm animals
    • Protein
  7. Commercial Herd Management
    • The breeding herd
    • Production systems
    • Cow-calf herd
    • Beef production systems using dairy stock
  8. Feed Lot Management
    • Lot feeding – types of feedlot
    • Managing cattle in a feedlot
    • Feedlot Records
    • Article on pen feeding in South Africa
  9. Stud Herd Management
    • Time of calving
    • Feeding
    • Fertility
    • Indicators of fertility in bulls
    • Indicators of fertility in cows
  10. Management, Economics and Marketing
    • Profitability
    • Factors affecting gross output
    • Factors affecting variable costs


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