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4 Handy Helpers for Cattle Producers

These latest products can provide big benefits around the ranch.

Hay-Saving Bale Feeder

The Bextra Bale Feeder from Lienemann Productions in Princeton, Nebraska, saves hay when feeding either large round or large square bales, says the company. The patented upper basket design forces cattle to eat off the bottom of the bale.

Nebraska rancher Trevor Lienemann, who invented the product, says because cattle can’t pull hay out from higher up, forage stays inside the ring. University tests show hay waste can be reduced by 50% or more. 

The Bextra comes in a standard 8-foot round design with a suggested retail price of $650. You can also buy just the Bextra Basket (suggested $260) to retrofit most round bale feeders. A square design is also available. 

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Rotating Bale Mover

Worksaver’s R Series Rotating Bale Hand helps move and stack 4- to 6-foot hay bales of up to 2,200 pounds. The clamp arms pick up the bale, rotate it up to 110°, and stack it like a can of soup. 


There are four models, depending on the lift arm to which the Bale Hand is attached. Suggested retail price (prior to setup and freight) ranges from $3,295 to $3,525.

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Sliding Trailer Gate

Big Bend Trailers from Fort Davis, Texas, has a new floating gate option for the interior of its stock trailers. The floating gate uses sliding rails and locking pins to move forward or backward in 16-inch increments to change compartment size. 

In a 24-foot trailer, for instance, the gates can be set for three equal 8-foot interior pens. Or, you can move the gates to allow a 4-foot pen in front and bigger pens in back. 

Some customers like to put calves (or a bull) in a smaller compartment in front, says the company. It is also handy for feed or can be used as an ATV compartment. The additional cost for the floating gate option is $1,150. 

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Calf Nutrition Booster 

Calf-Rescue is a new oral nutrition supplement from Brookside Agra that gives dairy and beef calves a boost at birth, weaning, or other stress periods. For newborn calves, it provides beneficial bacteria to promote a healthy digestive system for about $1.50 per calf, says Tim Nelson of Brookside Agra.

In addition to guaranteed levels of vitamin A, vitamin E, thiamine, and vitamin B12, Calf-Rescue also contains inulin, a complex carbohydrate that helps colonize beneficial bacteria in the gut. It also contains lactobacillus acidophilus. 

It’s available in a case of 12 applicator tubes (1.04 ounces each) for $107.40. 

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Tip of the Day

Music is calming

AATF department logo Leave a weather monitor or radio turned on 24-7 – with the volume up – in your calving barn during calving season.

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Will you have enough on-farm storage for harvest?

I just want to see the responses
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38% (21 votes)
No, it’s going to be a bin-buster
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Maybe, depending on yields
5% (3 votes)
No, I am looking at new bins or temporary storage
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