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Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - April 17, 1970, Lethbridge, Alberta Friday, April 17, 1970 - TH1 ICTHBRIDGI HERALD - B LETHBRIDGE RESEARCH STATION Cattlemen Asked To Report Abnormalities In Calves DR. D. M. BOWDEN Animal Husbandman Cattle breeders can benefit their industry by recording arid reporting the birth of abnormal calves. They and the operators of artificial insemination centres need this information in determining the causes and frequency of abnormalities in cat-tie and in devising the means to avoid them. Abnormalities In calves can be caused by environmental factors such as disease and nutritional deficiencies. For example, a cow with a shortage of vitamin A in her diet can produce a calf with numerous deformities, particularly of the eyes and head. Abnormalities may also be of genetic origin. These usually are transmitted through a recessive gene. Genes are the heritable units in the animal that determine its characteristics. The expression of any particular characteristic results from the combination of a pair of genes, one from each parent. In some pairs of genes the gene from one parent may dominate the other. In Hereford cattle, for example, the gene for normal, size dominates when it. is paired with the. gene for 'snorter* dwarfism and all the offspring will be normal. Only when both genes of the pair are for dwarfism will the animal be a dwarf. The dwarf gene in this case is referred to as a recessive gene and the carrier of this gene can be identified only if a dwarf offspring is produced. All breeds of cattle carry some undesirable recessive genes and likely always will.' As a rule, abnormalities occur infrequently in cattle and are not a problem. However, if bulls carrying the same undesirable gene are used successively in a group of cows the occurrence of abnormal calves can reach troublesome proportions. This situation can usual ly be prevented if complete information on abnormal calves is recorded and an effort made to seek out the cause rather than hide it. For example, in dairy cattle ah increase in the frequency of 'bull - dog' - type calves was avoided when reports of their" occurrence were reported to the AI centres. This information made possible the identification of carrier bulls, which were then removed from service. The number of abnormal calves born is usually small Therefore, it is important that each one be recorded with s full description of its condition Operators of artificial insemination centres, are particularly interested in the discovery of these genetic abnormalities, Because of the large number of cows bred to a single bull in AI use, the chances of an undesirable gene reoccurring are so much greater. Since tin operators may want, to inspect an abnormal calf to obtain an accurate description, they should be notified before the calf is destroyed. Private breeders should also keep records of all abnormal calves born in s their* herds so that they may detect breeding lines that carry undesirable recessive genes. * * W I PRESIDENT - R. E. Forbes, principal of the agricultural extension centre at Brandon, Man., has been named president - elect of the 4,000-member Agricultural Institute of Canada for the term .lWOtTl. He will assume the position following the 50th annual meeting of the institute in July of this year. Scours Said Greatest Corwern In Calf Diseases 4-H dub Reports WILLOW CREEK The Willow Creek District 4-H Public speaking finals were held recently in the Lutheran Church Hall in Claresholm. Judges were Cal Brandley, Urban Pittman, and Robert Hamilton, all from Lethbridge. Winners were, first- Donella Oviatt; Stavely - Parkland Beef Club, speaking on Discrimination; second - Dianne Bol-duc, Willow Creek Light Horse Club, who's talk was on Hunger; third - Cara Moser, who spoke on The Sportsman, from the Willow 'Creek 4-H Light Horse Club; fourth - Diane Hawk, Stavely-Parkland Beef Club, who explained Drug Abuse. Beth Cornish-reporter Marketing Needs Updating Federation Tells Ottawa The Canadian Federation of Agriculture, at a recent meeting in Ottawa, called on the federal government to update the Canadian marketing system, with a program of reduced farm1 production costs and a plan for the development of a nation-wide agricultural co-operative. CharlieMunro, federation president,said, "Canadian farmers, research and < exten- Snow Mold Control Improved The chances are very good that there will be at least two new chemicals on the market by, next fall for controlling snow mold. The two that have been tested locally have both shown snow mold control that is superior to that achieved In the past by the mercury compounds. In the meantime Dr. H. Vaart-nou, plant pathologist with the Alberta Plant Industry Division, recommends raking all lawns in the spring because it helps dry out the grass and makes the turf less susceptible to snow mold. Typical characteristics of snow mold are small or large patches of white, grey or greyish-pink cowbweb-like material on the grass. Three of the five fungi which cause snow mold produce brown .or black spots on blades of grass. When these are present the cobweb effect may not be evident, having already disappeared. Pincher Creek Has First D.A. Robert James Lyons, assistant district agriculturalist at Cardston since 1968, has been named district agriculturalist of Pincher Creek, effective April 1 of this year. Mr. Lyons will be the districts first full time DA, and is involved in the present expansion plans of the Alberta department of agriculture, trying to provide more trained personnel in more areas. slon agencies have developed a very efficient production system which now calls for expanded markets. Unless a more aggressive trade development program is started, our present problems will be compounded."  The CFA asked specifically for a freeing of trade, reduced tariffs and a market research commission. Mr. Munro added, "Switching production patterns in Canada every time there is a market crisis on a commodity does not help anyone, and this Is why we are asking for an immediate start on a national development plan with the producers and provinces tied into the planning. "We must get better guidance than we have had to date, he said, so farmers can plan with some assurance." A brief presented by the federation indicated that a large number of Canadian farmers, probably about 130,000 have gross incomes of not more than $2,500 per year, and that undoubtedly some of them would not be able to adequately develop farm enterprises enough to earn a fair living. "We need some kind of a national plan, Mr. Munro said, and government must realize that people's lives are being affected. The plan allow the people in question to make the decisions." Auxiliary Wing Plan Rejected TABER (HNS) - The add! tion of an auxiliary hospital wing to Taber General Hospital is not in the program stated Minister of Health James D. Henderson in a letter to the Taber MD. The letter, in reply to a request by the MD council on behalf of Taber Pensioners Organization, said that due to the "uneconomic" features of such a proposal, such action cannot be considered favorably. The pensioners association bad earlier written to a number of local civic admMstrations and local groups seeking support for a nursing home or auxiliary hospital for Taber. The matter is now in the hands of the Taber General Hospital's directors who have made representation to the minister for expansion of local hospital facilities. BOW ISLAND The Bow Island 4-H Field Crops club went on an industrial tour recently. The club visited CHEC radio station in Lethbridge, Crest-wood Forest Plywood factory, Fort Macleod, Maverick trailer' factory In Fort Macleod, and ended the day with a tour of the Fort Macleod museum. The next meeting'of the club will xbe held May 20 at the home of Bernard Lywowsld. Dale Peterson-reporter WARNER The Warner 4*H Beef Club has had a very busy two months. On Feb. 21 we held a battery, and bottle drive in the surrounding district of Warner. The proceeds are going to our year end tour. On March 31, a number of our members attended the 4-H bon-spiel in Lethbridge. On April 1, we held our first heifer calf show in the.pavilion in Lethbridge at the same time as the annual spring bull sale. Our club made a very good showing. In the top six calves Beverly Doenz placed third and Nelson Doenz placed fifth. We held our regular meeting In the Memorial Library hall on April 4th with 27 members present. Our public speaking speakoffs were held on the evenings of April 6 and 7th, With Mr. Gerald Hutchinson, Mr. Bob Huddleston, and Mr. Ken Stroman acting as 'a panel of judges. Holly Doenz was the successful winner who went to the district public speaking on April 10. Items coming up are the judging competition on April 18, and entertaining the Ready-made 4-H beef club on April 25, Beverly Doeni-reporter GLENWOOD The Glenwood's Multi Club met on April 6, in the Lion's Hall. . President Kathy Rice thanked all the members that par-ticipted in the Speech Competition at' Glenwood. Both Glenwood's 4-H clubs participated in the Speech Competition. Doral Lybbert placed first in the Multt Club, and Marilyn Rice won in the Trail Trotters Club. The runners-up for both clubs were,' Kathy Rice, Pat Nelsien, Dorothy Nelsien, and Janet Lybbert. A combined local Achievement Day was planned so that more people would learn about 4-H. The date hasn't been decided on yet but it will be sometime at the end of June. Christine Rice-reporter LETHBRIDGE NORTHERN On April 6 the regular meeting of the Lethbridge Northern 4-H Beef club was held in the Huntsville School with Rod Murray, vice-president, acting as chairman. The pledge and flag salute were led by Peter Tamminga. * The club decided to build a float to enter in the Lethbridge Parade and the executive was �appointed to be the committee. It was agreed to keep the old uniform: white shirt, green tie and blue jeans for another year. Pat Foster - reporter. By DR. W. N. HARRIES Provincial Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory Lethbridge, Alberta Scours is by far the greatest cause of losses in young calves. This year although not widespread, the disease is proving very troublesome for some farmers and ranchers. In these outbreaks the antibiotics usually helpful have not been beneficial. Calf scouring is caused by certain .strains of coliform bacteria found in the intestinal tract of cattle. These bacteria are always present but some forms are more virulent and proliferate under certain circumstances to cause diarrhea in young calves. Various factors have am important bearing on the severity of the disease, these are listed.  Cleanliness in the area where the calf is born and where it grows over the first three -weeks. Since infection is carried In feces of cows and particularly of scouring calves, abundant clean dry straw and as much spacing as possible is very necessary to limit spread This applies especially when calving- takes place in a confined area. Cows teats -should be cleaned if contaminated.  Exposure. Of course the best way to limit contamina- l^tion is to have the cow on pasture at or soon after calving. Frequently the only way to stop scours is to turn the animals: back to pasture, but calves run the risk of exposure if bad weather supervenes. They are more prone to sickness when in a rundown condition. Damp areas are to be avoided, sheltered sloping terrain is better than flat ground as it dries more quickly.  Colostrum. The first milk confers protection through its high antibody content. Absorption of the antibodies declines 12 hours after birth and in some cases before this. It is thus essential the calf takes in a good, supply of colostrum as soon as possible after being born. Colostrum is also Impor- tant in that it contains vitamins especially Vitamin A. * Nutrition. This can be the major factor in scours.. -It^to false economy to try to save money by inadequate feeding during winter. Particular attention needs to be focused on the Vitamin A content of the ration. Most cattle- seem to be fed sufficiently well yet scours can be as much of a problem in well fed herds as in poor ones. Thus adequate feeding by itself is imisfficient to prevent scours. The correct antibiotics given by mouth and also by injection are usually enough to effect cure if given early. This year sensitivity testing at the Lethbridge Laboratory has indicated a marked increase in resistance to antibiotics by coliform bacteria isolated from badly hit herds. If the disease is well established due to neglect or the use of wrong drugs, fluid is necessary to correct dehydration. Persistent diarrhea and lack of fluid intake se-. verely dehydrates calves, these have sunken eyes and a tight skin. It is difficult to bring them back on antibiotics alone. Sick calves should not receive whole milk but rather one part milk diluted with two parts of water. Electrolyte solutions can also be adminis tered by mouth in an attempt to correct dehydration. The best way to improve the fluid balance is by a blood transfusion. In addition to replacing fluids the. whole blood contains antibodies. If transfusion is not practical then intravenous injection of saline or electrolyte solutions is a good second best. Professional judgement is necessary when fluids are administered by injection, calves can suffer irrepairable damage if such therapy is unsupervised. It is the task of the owner to identify the first stages of sickness, to seek veterinary advice on drug usage, dosage and "on supportive treatment. Above all the owner has to spend time with these calves giving the tender loving care so necessary for recovery. )~~Agro - Outlook By Steve Bareham ALL Indications point to a substantial Increase in Canadian hog numbers during 1970, and the old law of supply and demand will once more come into play with the producer on' the gambling end. Pork production is definitely an attractive target for many members of the farm community faced with wheat surpluses 'and drastic reductions in wheat acreage, but the rosy market scene of today could change rapidly with the introduction of too many new hog producers. Canada has not experienced a real pork surplus for 10 years, and rising pork prices have reflected the per capita increase in consumption. (The per capita consumption, in Canada during 1969 was 54 pounds.) If consumption rates continue at the present level, an estimated one per cent increase in hog numbers per year can be absorbed comfortably. (Canada marketed eight million hogs In 1969). With about 150,000 farms in Canada, a 10-anlmal Increase per farm would result in nearly a 20 per cent jump in hogs marketed. A serious surplus would develop. A word of caution has been conveyed by government agencies, livestock firms and marketing concerns, and now it is'up to the producer to prevent yet another strain on the Canadian farm economy.    Unifarm Is Importing three Rumanian tractors, for trial tests in the province. President Paul Babey said the tractors retail at about half the cost of American tractors. (2,500 U.S. for a 45 h.p.) Producers should watch for the test results on these machines. Advisory Committee Named For Egg And Fowl Board A four man advisory pricing committee will be named to the Alberta Egg and Fowl Marketing Board. Bob Chesire, Alberta regional co-ordinator of the National Farmers Union said recently in Edmonton, "the small farm egg producer is now fighting for survival, and if government action isn't taken immediately, many, of these farmers will be forced off their farms and into the cities. Being unskilled, many of these families will end up on welfare." For year's now, egg price fluctuations have been wide in Alberta, and increased stress is added with the importation of eggs from out of province. Under the Canadian interprovin- cial trade agreement, of the BNA act this practise Is legal, Ray Reierson, acting agricultural minister, has given statement t h a t the provincial government will take- all necessary steps to ensure fair and equal marketing opportunities to all producers. Mr. Reierson, also reported that an egg breaking station will soon commence operations at Two Hills, providing a much needed outlet for eggs that cannot be absorbed into the table trade. He also made a~ suggestion to the provincial legislature that eggs be sold under contract with first chance going to Al* berta producers. Calendar Of Farm Events April 18 - Walsh - Second Spring Cattle Sale April 18 - Billings, Mont. - Simmental Field Day. . ( April 22 - Taber - Horticulture Seminar (Landscaping) April 23 - Carmangay - Pruning Field Day April 23 - Calgary - Charolais Field Day April 29 -Taber - Landscaping Workshop May 3 - Stanford, Mont. - P.LC. Forum , HI INTERNATIONAL HI Opportunity Days Save hundreds on Travelall towing powerl Pick up big savings on your choice of pickups! Special bargains nowonlour-wheel drivsScoutl Walt till you sea what you can sav� on the Loadstar I ON INTERNATIONAL TRUCKS This Is It. Your opportunity to save a lot of money on a lot of truck! Want the real wagon? Save hundreds now on the Travelall. Rides smooth. Looks gorgeous. But built to handle truckloads of cargo. And tow a big trailer with ease. Picking a pickup? Then pick up big savings" now on Internationa! comfort and style. Huge choice of models, sizes, engines and options for every kind ot work. Or fun. Heading across country? Head for International to save on the Scout. Unstoppable 4-whiel drive. Unbeatable V-8 power. 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