Archive for January, 2001

Important information on filling out Manifests

Thursday, January 18th, 2001

One thing we have noticed over the years is that many people have the habit of letting the trucker fill out their manifests for them. In fact, most of the truckers just automatically grab the manifest and fill it out, then hand it to the consignor to sign. If information is wrong (wrong addresses, name spelled wrong, wrong box number) or if information is incomplete, who is to blame?

Filling out the manifest is not the trucker’s job and I don’t know why they would want to get into it.

The manifest is a legal document. I would suggest that you fill it out yourself in detail before the trucker arrives. Then just fill in the numbers after the cattle have been counted on the truck. You know how to spell your name, you know your address, phone number, mileage, when cattle were bred, breed of bull, how or if you want your cheque split or deferred etc. better than your trucker does. It would save everyone a lot of confusion due to misinformation or lack of information.

Also when you make out a manifest you are writing on four copies. Press hard. We get the bottom copy. Sometimes we cannot read it.

Sometimes the truckers do not press hard enough or do not write legibly, as a result trucking cheques are not accurate. Sometimes truckers do not put their complete address on the manifest.

Sometimes the consignors do not put their complete mailing address on their manifest either. Sometimes they do not even put their complete name, for example, we may deal with two or more Joe Blows. They may live in different towns, or the same town but they have the same name with different middle initials – or Senior and Junior.

If you could just press harder and fill it out completely, the office staff would sure appreciate it. Fewer cheques would be detained in the mail too.

Thanks for your cooperation.

Why do we have to sort calves the way we do at presorted sales?

Thursday, January 18th, 2001

Occasionally our competitors promote the idea that we get too tough or too particular, when grading calves into the top cut pens. They sort for speed we sort for accuracy. Wyatt Earp used to say “Fast is fine, but accuracy is final”. Some of the buyers think we could pay even more attention and be even more accurate.

When I say buyers most people think of order buyers. But what about local buyers? Maybe they do the buying themselves, or have an order buyer buy for them. They may get several loads of calves. How do they view the performance of these calves over the winter? (more…)


Monday, January 15th, 2001

Everyone should be vaccinating their cowherd with 9-way (modified live pre-breeding vaccine) every year after calving and before breeding. You will not save money by avoiding doing it. Sooner or later it will cost you thousands of dollars in poor conception rates or slipped calves. In the case of B.V.D. you will experience unthrifty, small, sometimes hairless, freaky looking calves as well. (more…)

BVD (Bovine Virus Diarrhea)

Monday, January 15th, 2001
  • This virus is in our cattle herds and is causing significant problems.
  • Transmission between animals is by direct contact.

Persistently Infected (PI) animals are the major source of infection in the herd:

  • All persistently infected cattle are first infected when they are a fetus
  • These persistently infected calves can be born normal and grow to a mature animal, some are unthrifty, and others look normal.
  • A persistently infected animal will shed BVD virus in the herd all of its life. The only way to stop shedding the virus is by natural death or slaughter.

BVD Syndromes

  • Day 0-42 of pregnancy: infertility, abortions, early embryo death
  • Day 42-125 of pregnancy: results in a persistently infected fetus
  • Day 125-180 of pregnancy: birth defects, deformed or weak calves, stillbirths, cloudy eyes, poor doers etc. (Sometimes these symptoms are confused with vitamin or Selenium deficiency, or poor nutrition. That is the feed company gets blamed, if feed was bought. Sometimes it gets blamed on genetics or the bull supplier). Usually it is BVD.

Mucosal disease: (Syndrome of persistently infected animals)
Signs: Depression, off feed, diarrhea, fever, sores in mouth. Usually happens shortly after weaning but can happen up to two years of age.

Respiratory disease: BVD virus contributes to pneumonia outbreaks in feedlots. The BVD virus is commonly detected in calves that die of pneumonia.

Control of BVD comes down to VACCINATION
– Maintain high immunity in the cowherd.

  1. If infection does occur, the cow’s antibodies will remove the virus,before the fetus is infected.
  2. This is best done with a modified-live vaccine given to cows 3 weeks prior to breeding.

It has been proposed that within the next 10 years, there will be a move in the cattle industry to eradicate BVD. This will mean testing all animals and culling all the carriers. One can anticipate that this will probably be met with as much enthusiasm as did the CCIA cattle identification or the current gun legislation.

Contact your local veterinarian for more information on how to control this silent killer disease.

Internet Sales

Monday, January 8th, 2001

Ship them to Assiniboia The high dollar market

All of our presorted sales are broadcast over the Internet to prospective buyers.

That is, they are conducted along with the live bidding in the sale ring. This was set up in October 2000. We have some pre-approved buyers that have been logged on and bid occasionally. So far they haven’t been able to out bid our front row buyers who attend our sales on a regular basis.

There are several reasons for this. We have always said that some of the strongest and most aggressive buyers in the business sit in our front row. Obviously they are going to be hard to out bid. It is not going to be easy to blow them away. They are always going to be armed with good orders. (more…)


Wednesday, January 3rd, 2001
  • Cows must be in yards by the latest 2:00 pm in the afternoon before the sale for pregnancy checking and mouthing.
  • We supply facilities and manpower to preg check cows in our yards at no extra charge (except Vet fees).
  • All bred cows to be preg checked in our yards and mouthed for age.
  • Cows are fed and watered the night before the sale at our expense, so why not deliver early?
  • Most sales limited to approx. 400 head.

What is the best kept secret in the cattle business? Answer: The breed of bull the cows are bred to and when the bull was turned out. Getting this information written on the manifest is like pulling teeth.

  1. We need this information in order to get full value for the cattle.
  2. We also need to know if the cattle are for the bred section of the sale or the open or slaughter and feeder section. (more…)

Presorted Sales Only!Plan Ahead! Save Yourself Time & Money

Wednesday, January 3rd, 2001
  • Calves are sorted and weighed as soon as possible off truck
  • Sorting will begin at 9:00 am the day before each presorted sale.
  • We need your cooperation. It is impossible to sort and weigh 2500 head of cattle in 4 or 5 hours. Obviously some cattle will have to get here early in the day.
  • Calves are fed and watered, at our expense, as soon as they are weighed.
  • Larger herds of calves can be kept separate, at owner’s request and sold in their own lot.


  • After 11:00 am cattle liner loads of calves will have priority. Cattle liner loads are generally hauled further, take longer to process at home and the consignor cannot control when his trucker (because of previously committed loads) will arrive to load. Also, we can process more cattle per hour when delivered in larger groups.
  • It is easier and faster for the consignor with the smaller groups, the 10 to 25 head groups, to get them handled at home and get them here. Why wait until afternoon? We feed and water them here, 1,500 tons of feed a year. If you come in at 9:00, 9:30 or 10:00 am, we are seldom busy, but come in at 1:00, 2:00 or 3:00 pm and 6 or 8 liners may have just unloaded before you, and you will have to wait. Don’t blame us! Get up and get going in the morning. You’ll get here before the rush; your cattle will get weighed and be chewing their cud in their pens as content as you’ll be.
  • There is no point in coming in during the rush and pressuring auction market staff to hurry your cattle through. The other consignors’ cattle are important too! If he was here ahead of you, you’ll just have to wait your turn.
  • If you weren’t in a rush to get here, no one is going to get in a rush after you get here!