Eight handling teams from feedlots in southern Alberta assembled at Easterday Farms in Lethbridge recently to show off their skills in a first-of-its-kind event, the Pfizer Feedlot Challenge. Pfizer plans to make this an annual event.
Teams competed in a series of challenges to test their animal-handling skills and knowledge of feedlot animal health protocols.
The challenge involved the following activities:
A multiple-choice technical quiz to assess their knowledge of animal health products, protocols and quality assurance.
Chute processing fall-placed calves to assess handling protocols, preparation and administration of animal health products.
Ability to locate and remove cattle from a pen as quickly and quietly as possible in an effort to simulate the identification and removal of sick animals from a herd.
The teams competed under the watchful eyes of leading animal health professionals, including cattle-handling expert, Dr. Tom Noffsinger, and Pfizer cattle veterinarians, Dr. Les Byers and Dr. Larry Frischke.
In the end, team members Glen Stronks, Travis Kellet, Betty Jean Wilson, and Kristy Heapy from Kolk Farms prevailed as the winning team.
Following the competition, Dr. Noffsinger led the participants through an interactive discussion, outlining techniques for better cattle handling.