GFM Network News


WLPIP calf price insurance deadline extended

Three-week extension includes nine purchasing days

Cattle producers in the western provinces will get extra decision-making time this year on the calf price insurance available through Western Livestock Price Insurance (WLPIP). The Prairies’ Crown ag insurance corporations announced Thursday that the deadline to buy WLPIP calf price insurance for 2020 has been extended to June 18. The new deadline, reset from […] Read more

Producers who pay attention to teat and udder conformation rarely encounter a cow with mastitis.

Now is a good time to check udders of cows and bred heifers

Paying attention to teat and udder conformation greatly reduces the odds of having a cow with mastitis

Before calving is a good time for scrutinizing the udders of cows and bred heifers. Occasionally chronic infected quarters (probably emanating from the year previous) are highly visible as large swollen quarters compared to the other three. They will often flare up a few weeks before calving as the colostrum is being formed. Usually the […] Read more


Inducing cows is always a risk-and-reward scenario

Many factors need to be considered and no two cases are exactly alike

There comes a time in cow-calf production to induce cows to calve for a number of reasons. This may be because there is an abnormal pregnancy, the cow has a life-threatening condition, the pregnancy has gone on too long leading to health issues or other reasons. All require careful thought and examination as every case […] Read more

Are you willing to share animal traits info?

Cow-calf producers in Alberta are being asked to take a survey aimed at improving the productivity of the industry. Researchers at the University of Alberta are conducting the survey on the willingness of commercial cow-calf producers to accept compensation for sharing their animal traits information and the willingness of breeding associations to pay to obtain […] Read more





A thin cow will need an extra 1,400 pounds of hay just to stay warm over the winter.

There are extra challenges in wintering cows this year

Early weaning, supplement feed, and feeding vitamins earlier should be considered

With feed quality and quantity “all over the map this year,” producers face challenges weaning calves and maintaining cows, says a provincial beef and forage specialist. “If calves were not provided with creep feed over the summer, weaning weights will be lower than in most years — as much as 150 pounds per animal,” said […] Read more



Canfax and the Beef Cattle Research Council recently examined the uptake of beneficial practices in the cow-calf sector.

There’s progress but best practices often ignored

A deep dive into 
uptake of recommended cow-calf practices shows ‘there’s room for improvement’

‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ seems to be the common thread among cow-calf producers who haven’t yet adopted recommended practices on their own operations. “Producers are happy with the performance and productivity that they’ve been getting, so they see no reason to change,” said Brenna Grant, manager of Canfax Research Services. “That can […] Read more

Cattle producers have made a lot of progress but still have a ways to go

The latest in-depth survey of the cow herd shows higher rates of vaccination, but gaps remain

A recent article on the results of a very in-depth survey of cow-calf herds across Western Canada notes there has been decent improvement in vaccination usage since surveys done in the early 2000s. But it pinpoints gaps in vaccine coverage that could be improved. There are things to be learned by every producer and veterinary […] Read more