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NAHMS Feedlot _99 Study brochure

Working for the feedlot industry

The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) established the National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) to collect valuable, timely, and accurate information on animal health and management. Since 1990, NAHMS has developed national estimates on animal health and related management practices and assisted with identification of emerging issues for the national swine, dairy, cow-calf, feedlot, sheep, catfish, and equine populations.

The Feedlot '99 study is NAHMS' second national study of the beef feedlot industry. The NAHMS 1994 Cattle on Feed Evaluation (COFE) results provided producer-requested baseline information that will be used with Feedlot '99 information to identify trends in animal health and management practices over the past 5 years. Results of the COFE are posted on the World Wide Web at: www.aphis.usda.gov/vs/ceah/ncahs.

"The NAHMS feedlot study data should provide valuable
information regarding the importance of preventative health
programs at the cow-calf level. Moreover, this information
will enhance efforts to communicate the importance of health
programs across industry sectors. To capture important
information for the U.S. beef industry, cattle feeders are
encouraged to assist NAHMS with their efforts."

Dr. Bob Bohlender, Chairman
NCBA Animal Disease Research Subcommittee

Study Outline
Producers , veterinarians, consultants, university researchers, and government personnel met with NAHMS in personal interviews and focus groups to determine the information gaps confronting the feedlot industry. Participants identified the following issues as priorities.

Information from this study will describe management practices used by the feedlot industry that:

  • affect product quality.
  • impact cattle health.
  • influence shedding of specific bacteria by feedlot cattle (such as E. coli 0157, Salmonella, and Campylobacter).

Other data collected will relate to:

  • industry-wide antimicrobial use.
  • pre-arrival processing and conditioning of cattle.

Click for more information on Feedlot '99 study objectives .

NAHMS' national studies rely on voluntary participation of U.S. livestock and poultry producers. Confidentiality is our top priority . Links between NAHMS data and the operations of origin are not shared.

"We must know where we are at on these health issues in
order to chart a course of action towards improvement as
well as assess our progress. The NAHMS study provides
vital information needed to accomplish this. "

Dr. Louis J. Perino, Professor of Immunology,
Health and Management, West Texas A & M University

Producer Time

  • The National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will conduct on-farm, personal interviews with 1,200 feedlot producers from 12 major cattle feeding states.* The interview will take approximately 1 hour.

(* Arizona , California , Colorado , Idaho , Iowa , Kansas , Nebraska , New Mexico , Oklahoma , South Dakota , Texas , and Washington .)

  • A State or Federal Veterinary Medical Officer (VMO) or Animal Health Technician (AHT) will conduct a second personal interview.
  • All producers will be offered the chance to help NAHMS estimate national levels of animal disease by recording disease events on user-friendly pen logs. These logs will follow health events of cattle in a small number of pens from arrival to shipping.
  • Selected producers will be offered the opportunity to have cattle fecal samples collected and tested for E. coli 0157, Salmonella, and Campylobacter to evaluate national shedding patterns. Laboratory findings on shedding results for individual feedlots will always be kept confidential.

What's in it for YOU?

For participating producers, Feedlot '99 will provide:

  • a means to compare your operation against national averages.
  • estimates of disease morbidity, mortality, and outcomes for your feedlot compared to national averages.
  • an opportunity to support a prosperous future for the feedlot industry and, therefore, your operation.

For the U.S. feedlot industry, Feedlot '99 will provide valuable results and serve as a tool to increase productivity and quality by:

  • characterizing management practices nationwide.
  • estimating national productivity and disease levels.
  • helping researchers and pharmaceutical companies

focus on areas of importance to the feedlot industry.

  • providing accurate information so that legislators and industry leaders can make informed decisions on agricultural issues based on science and not speculation.
  • identifying areas to emphasize for education of veterinarians, feedlot managers, feedlot employees, and others involved with the industry.

"It is difficult to make decisions about the future without
analyzing the past. This NAHMS feedlot study will help
us determine historical trends in the hope of defining
a clear direction towards lower production costs and
maximum efficiencies ."

Dr. Scott MacGregor, Livestock Consulting Services
President, Academy of Veterinary Consultants

For more information, contact:
Centers for Epidemiology & Animal Health
2150 Centre Ave., Bldg., B, MS 2E7
Fort Collins, CO 80526-8117
Telephone: (970) 494-7000

Additional Information