Farm Talk

April 3, 2013

Over 200 attend branding workshop in Mt. Vernon


CNHI

Parsons, Kansas — Over 200 persons attended the afternoon branding workshop at the Jackie Moore Ranch near Mt. Vernon on March 26. Attendees came from Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and much of southwest Missouri to watch the ranch crew demonstrate freeze and hot-iron branding.

Eldon Cole, a livestock specialist with University of Missouri Extension in southwest Missouri, discussed the Missouri Brand Law and the merits of taking time to put a “return address” on your animals.

Jackie Moore explained their branding program and how it aids feedlots in tracking a producer’s cattle, whether they are good or sometimes bad.

Sheriffs in attendance were Brad Delay of Lawrence County and Joey Kyle of Christian County. They voiced their support of branding as a tool to help them in case of theft.

The demonstration of freeze branding was carried out by Glenn and Kris Callison, Simmental breeders from Verona.

“They have been branding with the super cold iron about two years with excellent success. The freeze branding technique is useful on dark-haired cattle and horses as the new hair comes in white if the branding process is done properly. Hide damage is less of a problem than with a hot iron brand,” said Cole.

A weakness of the cold iron technique is that it requires obtaining dry ice and a solution such as 99 percent alcohol or gasoline to super cool the iron. The copper iron must be applied around 40 seconds which requires good restraint of the animal. This time expense may be a problem for cattlemen who get in a hurry.

The freeze brand is used more by seedstock producers as well as cow-calf operators as an herd ID program in lieu of ear tags. Stocker cattle producers usually rely on the hot iron method.

The hot iron method of branding the 45 head was supervised by the Moore crew of Bailey Moore, Keith Ketron and Bruce Hall.

Gregg Bailey of Mt. Vernon, president of the Southwest Missouri Cattlemen’s Association welcomed the large crowd and invited them to participate in local and Missouri Cattlemen’s Association activities in the future. Dustin Schnake, Stotts City, Missouri Cattlemen’s regional vice-president for southwest Missouri was also in attendance.

Questions regarding branding and the Missouri Brand Law may be directed toward University of Missouri Extension livestock specialists or the Missouri Department of Agriculture, Animal Health Division, Jefferson City.

MU Extension livestock specialists in southwest Missouri are: Eldon Cole in Mt. Vernon, (417) 466-3102, Andy McCorkill in Dallas County at (417) 345-7551, Dona Goede in Cedar County, (417) 276-3313 or Logan Wallace in Howell County at (417) 256-2391. £