VINTON, Iowa – Three Iowa stockmanship, handling and Beef Quality Assurance workshops featuring Dr. Tom Noffsinger, a consulting feedyard veterinarian from Benkelman, Neb., will be July 30 and 31. In the stockmanship sessions, Noffsinger will teach participants about cattle handling methods that improve animal movement and cattle performance by reducing stress on livestock. His presentation is based on four simple principles of cattle behavior: cattle want to see you, go around you and be with other cattle, and can only process one thought at a time. Noffsinger also will demonstrate low stress cattle handling methods that can be used whether gathering from the pasture or processing through corrals.
“Wherever we encourage cattle to move to, they should perceive they belong there. When we focus on the voluntary movement of animals, and people who volunteer to learn low-stress handling, well, that changes the world,” Noffsinger said. “We understand and use the animal’s visual abilities, posture angle, language, speed and attitude – all cues to help us work with rather than against their nature.”
In addition to the animal handling and stockmanship sessions, Denise Schwab and Russ Euken with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will conduct BQA certification sessions for attendees. BQA is the foundation for the Tyson FarmCheck program which will be required for all who sell cattle to Tyson beginning in 2019.
The first workshop will be held July 30 at the Fayette County Fairgrounds in West Union starting at 9:30 a.m.; the second workshop will be the same date at the Wyoming Fairgrounds in Wyoming starting at 6 p.m. The West Union session is open to any beef producers in the area; but the Wyoming session is only open to members of the Jones County Cattlemen Association. The third session will be held July 31, starting at 9:30 a.m. at Summit Farms cow calf facility 22213 230th Ave, Hubbard.
All sessions are free but advance registration is requested to ensure adequate resource materials. There will be a meal provided, so please register in advance by calling the Benton County Extension Office at 319-472-4739 for the July 30 sessions or the Hardin County Extension office at 641-648-4850 for the July 31 session.
Noffsinger grew up on a diversified ranch with beef cows, swine, crops and a small dairy. After receiving his DVM from Colorado State University in 1973, he joined the Twin Forks Vet Clinic at Benkelman, NE. His professional life took an interesting turn when he learned about Bud Williams, and then convinced the expert in stockmanship and low-stress cattle handling to live and teach in Benkelman for several years. After 32 years in beef cattle practice at the Twin Forks Clinic, he became an independent feedlot consultant specializing in facility design, stockmanship and low-stress livestock handling.
Workshop co-sponsors are several County Cattlemen groups, Iowa Beef Center, ISU Extension and Outreach, and the Iowa Beef Industry Council. For more information on these workshops, contact Schwab at firstname.lastname@example.org or 319-721-9624, or Euken at email@example.com or 641-923-2856.