The body condition scoring system for goats varies widely. Both five-point and nine-point scales are in use, but the five-point scale appears to prevail and will be given here. The techniques are pretty straightforward; just remember that hair can be misleading. A hands-on evaluation is always best. Emaciated. Goat obviously weak. All bones prominent; sternum…… Continue reading Body Condition Scoring: Goats
While most animals can be scored with a simple visual inspection, evaluating a sheep’s condition is a more hands-on process.
The body condition scoring (BCS) system for swine is very simple and is based on a five-point scale: Emaciated. Ribs, spine, and backbone prominent. Thin. Hips and backbone noticeable to the eye. Ribs can easily be felt with only slight pressure. Normal. Animal’s body is tube-shaped. Hips and backbone can only be felt with firm…… Continue reading Body Condition Scoring: Swine
Body condition scoring can be a useful tool for horse owners. It can be used to make sure a horse is ready for the winter, the breeding season, or any other time when it is likely to burn calories rapidly. The scoring system for horses uses a nine-point scale: Poor. Obviously extremely emaciated. Bone structures…… Continue reading Body Condition Scoring: Horses
Are you prepared to be challenged? Here’s a book on raising grassfed cattle that may do just that. The first half of Reproduction & Animal Health: How to Select, Breed, and Manage a Herd for Health and Performance on Grass by Charles Walters and Gearld Fry discusses how to select cattle for breeding purposes. Cattle consultant…… Continue reading Reproduction & Animal Health
The body condition scoring system for dairy cattle is slightly different than that commonly used for beef cattle. Scores are based on a five-point system, with 1 being emaciated and 5 being fat. To allow for more precise assessment, however, dairy cattle are typically assigned scores in 0.25 increments. Dairy cattle are scored as follows:…… Continue reading Body Condition Scoring: Dairy Cattle
Here’s an inspiring read for youngsters with an interest in farming: A Champion of the Foothills by Lewis Edwin Theiss. Ned Higgins grew up on his father’s run-down farm, firmly believing that it will never amount to anything. His sole ambition is to find a paying city job that will enable him to buy a…… Continue reading A Champion of the Foothills
A body condition score (BCS) is a subjective evaluation of an animal’s weight relative to its size. It helps livestock owners determine whether an animal is too fat, too thin, or just about right by noting the location and thickness of fat deposits. Over the next few weeks, we will summarize the scoring systems generally…… Continue reading Body Condition Scoring: Beef Cattle
Heritage livestock breeds have been around for a while, before the days of industrial agriculture. They are walking pieces of history.
Miniature breeds, like everything else, have both advantages and disadvantages.