Oklahoma's Latest Farm
And Ranch News
Tuesday, January 24, 2023

OKC West in El Reno Not Selling Today- Will have Calves and Yearlings Selling Wednesday 01/25/2023
OSU’s Derrell Peel: Less Heifers in Feedlots…Finally
Mondays, Dr. Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist, offers his economic analysis of the beef cattle industry. This analysis is a part of the weekly series known as the “Cow Calf Corner.” In this edition, Dr. Peel talks about fewer heifers in feedlots.

The January Cattle on Feed report from USDA-NASS showed the fourth consecutive month of declining feedlot inventories starting in October. The January 1 on-feed total for feedlots with capacity of 1,000 head or more was down 2.9 percent year over year. The January 1 feedlot total of 11.682 million head was larger than the December 2022 total by a scant 9,000 head but still below the November total of 11.696 million head. It looks increasingly like the early November seasonal peak will hold. If so, the November total was 4.1 below the previous seasonal peak in February 2022 and suggests sharply tighter feedlot numbers going forward.

December marketings were down 6.1 percent year over year, close to pre-report expectations. The marketings number is in line with December fed (steer + heifer) slaughter, which was down 5.9 percent year over year. Feedlots appear to still be current though the lower December marketings may reflect delayed shipments due to the December winter storm.

December placements were down 8.0 percent year over year, also as expected. Monthly feedlot placements were down year over year in nine of the twelve months of 2022. Total placements the last six months from July – December, which accounts for almost all cattle in the feedlots currently, is down 3.1 percent from last year.

The latest report also included the quarterly breakdown of steers and heifers in feedlots. The steer total on January 1 was down 4.5 percent year over year. Steers in feedlots have decreased on a year over year basis for 6 of the last 7 quarters going back to July 2021. The feedlot heifer inventory on January 1 was down by 0.5 percent year over year. This is a small decrease but significant as it is the first year over year quarterly decrease in feedlot heifer inventories since July 2021. Large heifer numbers in feedlots supported the 4.8 percent year over year increase in heifer slaughter in 2022 and was the largest heifer slaughter total since 2004. The decrease in feedlot heifers does not, at this point, reflect heifer retention but simply a lack of heifers due to large heifer slaughter the past two years.

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Oklahoma Farm Report's Ron Hays talks regenerative agriculture and ranching with Jimmy Emmons. Jimmy is a long time resident of Leedey, OK. He is the third generation on the family farm in Dewey County. He and his wife Ginger have been farming and ranching together since 1980. They have a diverse 2000 acre cropping operation growing wheat, soybeans, sesame, sunflowers, irrigated dairy alfalfa hay, canola, grain sorghum and several cover crops for seed.
Jimmy has been monitoring soil health with soil testing since 2011 utilizing cover crops to enhance soil health.

Jimmy and Ginger also have a 250 cow/calf herd and take in yearling cattle for custom grazing on the nearly 6000 acres of native range. Ginger is the primary cattle manager in the operation. The Emmons’ utilize an adaptive multi-paddock grazing system on their range and forages grown on crop ground. They use the system to keep the native grasses and soils healthy, maximize biological diversity and optimize animal health.

As Jimmy Says- Long Live the Soil!

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