shelby.filley [at] oregonstate.edu 541-236-3016 Office:
Encouraging and facilitating the use of proven methods in animal nutrition and reproduction and forage production (pastures and hayground) for the efficient production of beef cattle and sheep in my multi-county region (Benton, Douglas, Jackson, Josephine, Lane, and Linn counties of Oregon)
Ph.D. Animal Science, Oregon State University, 1998
M.S. Agriculture, California State Polytechnic University, 1986
B.S. Animal Science, University of California, Davis, 1982
Outreach and Extension
Extension Service Site Publications
(2019) Mineral Requirements of Sheep and Goats This document lists the mineral requirements of sheep. Two subgroups of minerals, macro and micro, are listed. Maximum tolerable amounts of the microminerals are included. Use these requirements along with the Mineral Assessment worksheets to balance rations.
(2022) How to manage the production and use of hay in a drought Drought conditions have drastically reduced hay yields in the last year or two. With dry conditions forecast to continue, livestock producers need to rethink strategies for conserving forage.
(2021) December 2021 - OSU Livestock & Forages Newsletter for Western Oregon This month's issue includes articles on hay feeding to decrease waste, internal parasites in sheep and goats. There are brief announcements with fun facts, surveys and useful resources and educational program and events that provide a chance to connect.
(2022) January 2022 - OSU Livestock & Forages Newsletter for Western Oregon This month's issue includes articles on fostering baby lambs, early nitrogen application (T-sum 200), and getting ready for calving. There are brief announcements with fun facts, surveys and useful resources and educational program and events that provide a chance to connect.
(2022) How to stimulate early pasture growth and cut livestock feed cost In parts of Oregon, pasture forage for grazing livestock is lacking early in the growing season. That forces livestock producers to rely on costly harvested forages for supplemental feed. There is another option. Research has shown that applying nitrogen early in the pasture growing season can accelerate growth and provide needed forage. A formula, called the T-Sum 200, can help livestock producers know when to apply the early season nitrogen.
(2021) When should we stop pasture grazing our horse?
(2021) November 2021 - OSU Livestock & Forages Newsletter for Western Oregon This month's issue includes articles on tracking noxious weeds, balancing livestock rations, and pasture management resources for winter study. There are four brief announcements with fun facts, surveys and useful resources and educational program and events that provide a chance to connect.
(2021) How to give your livestock the nutrients they need The practice of matching the nutrient content of feeds with the nutrient requirements of your livestock is very important, especially if you are using feeds that you are not familiar with. Balancing rations can help keep feed costs in check with production levels because you'll know what to expect from your cattle when using feeds with known costs and nutrient content.
(2021) Tracking weeds is first step in controlling them When winter approaches, it’s time to check your weed control plans. Noxious weeds are best controlled if you track them carefully. Weed mapping and weed calendaring are two activities important to tracking weeds so that you can properly control them. Here are a few tips to get you started.
(2021) September 2021 Issue - OSU Livestock & Forages Newsletter for Western Oregon This issue of the Livestock & Forages Western Oregon Newsletter contains an article on meat processing and information on State Inspected Meat Program in Oregon. There are also articles on mineral supplementation, including options when grazing multi-species and an OSU Mineral Survey and Testing program. There are several announcements and educational events listed as well.
(2021) How to meet the mineral needs of livestock in mixed pastures Minerals are critically important for the health and well-being of livestock. Cattle, sheep and goats are frequently pastured together, but sheep can be harmed by copper, which cattle and goats need. Options to get animals the minerals need include using specialized feeding stands that keep sheep out while allowing access by cattle and goats, hand feeding and mineral injections.
(2021) July 2021 Issue - OSU Livestock & Forages Newsletter for Western Oregon This issue of the Livestock & Forages Western Oregon Newsletter contains some summer season considerations. It has articles on Flushing ewes in preparation for breeding, dealing with pesky flies, and internal parasites in sheep and goats, plus a section on upcoming events and opportunities for producers.
(2021) May 2021 Issue - OSU Livestock & Forages Newsletter for Western Oregon Living with droughty pastures, strategies for efficient irrigation water use, when to consider culling sheep from your flock, marketing and feeding cull cows, pastures and land stewards, farm and ranch stress assistance network and many events to participate in.
(2021) When drought is in the forecast, start planning for livestock feed needs When drought is in the forecast for Oregon and other states, it's time for cattle operations to start making plans to ensure they have enough feed for their herds. In times of drought, the availability of pasture and hay for sale is substantially less. Purchasing feed early in the season and considering alternative feeds are two options. Other considerations include reducing herd numbers, early weaning of calves and careful pasture management.
(2021) Beef Quality Assurance program ensures quality meat and improves profits BQA certification is implemented by Oregon State University Extension Service, which promotes BQA-approved best management practices.
(2021) Examples of swine and carcass grades (slides) This presentation shows examples of slaughter swine and carcasses to go along with the official USDA descriptions from their websites on Slaughter Swine and Carcass Grades (https://www.ams.usda.gov/grades-standards/pork)
(2021) Hay Feeding Value and Protein Supplementation - David Bohnert and Shelby Filley
(2020) Economic value of sheep footrot vaccination Vaccinating your flock against footrot can yield benefits due to increased lamb weight gain. Learn how to assess the financial benefit of footrot control.
(2020) Biological control of weeds Biological control agents—insects, fungi or grazing animals—can help you control weeds on your property. It's important to choose the right biocontrol agent for the target weed. Learn the basics of biocontrol and find helpful resources in this article.
(2020) How to measure pasture productivity and capacity The monthly grazing capacity of a pasture can be stated as animal unit months, AUM for short. It is calculated by estimating the amount of forage an animal eats each day — 2.5% to 3% of its body weight — times 30 days.
(2020) Oregon Pork Producers This is the website of the Oregon Pork Producers. Their mission statement is "The Oregon Pork Producers strives to serve all producers regardless of size or production practices, by promoting producer and consumer education, research, animal well-being, marketing, and environmental responsibility."
(2020) Take home beef This is a brochure from the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture: "Not all of the cow makes it to the table. On average, a 1,000 pound steer will only weigh approximately 61% of it’s live weight once it makes it to the rail."
(2020) Feeder Cattle Grades, Carcass Grades, & Meat Palatability Overview of feeder cattle and carcass grades. The presentation previously used with the USDA Carcass Beef Grades and Standards.
(2020) USDA Carcass Beef Grades and Standards The amount of beef from a carcass is termed "yield" and is the pounds of closely trimmed retail cuts you get. Of course you want to get a large percentage of meat from your animal. This website contains the legal definitions that can help you understand what goes into this measurement.
(2020) Small scale meat farming: growing, finishing, processing This collection contains publications and information on selecting, purchasing, and preparing a meat animal for home slaughter. It includes resources for beef, goat meat, lamb, pork, poultry, and rabbit.
(2020) Temple Grandin Website Information on animal handling, transportation, humane slaughter and more.
(2020) Algae Blooms in ponds, rivers, and lakes Oregon Health Authority website has information on Blue-Green Algae, including Current Cyanobacteria Advisories. They note, "Don't go into water that looks foamy, scummy, thick like paint, pea-green, blue-green or brownish red. A good rule of thumb for you and your pet is: When in Doubt, Stay Out!"
(2020) How to identify forage plants in your pasture or hayfield Knowing exactly what's growing in a pasture or a hayfield is one of the first steps in proper management. Take advantage of resources online or through an Extension office to get help identifying forage plants.
(2020) Aquatic Weeds This document is a copy of my slides for a presentation on Aquatic Weed Control. Initial slides describe the main types of aquatic weeds by growing style. The reason this is done is that the control methods are based on weed type. Examples of each these main types are provided. Control methods and ways to measure pond area (shoreline or water) are provided. Specific aquatic herbicide recommendations are not provided here. Please see the PNW Weed Control Handbook, Aquatic Weed section (https://pnwhandbooks.org/weed/aquatic) for specific herbicides and more on controlling aquatic weeds.
(2020) Science information for the kids (and you) Here is a link to scientific information on animals from the American Society of Animal Sciences (ASAS), the predominant organization for professionals in the animal industry. This collection of programs has been reviewed by and is being promoted by ASAS. It is a solid source of information on animal production. Please enjoy this collection knowing scientists closely related to animal production recommend it.
(2020) Good livestock management starts with good records You can't manage what you don't measure is an old adage that rings true with livestock. Good record keeping provides a way to measure progress and is at the foundation of good livestock management.
(2020) Dealing with pesky flies on cattle Fly control is of major importance to cattle producers. This article can help you make decisions about which products would fit your program, how to avoid causing insecticide resistance in flies, and ways to clean up your barn area to help control them. Fly control is aimed at the two most important pests: face flies and horn flies.
(2020) Mud and Manure Management presentation This is a file of the presentation slides from an OSU Mud and Manure Management class. We covered the following topics: Benefits of Manure and Mud Management, Different practices and possibilities, and Resources for assistance.
Check out the article on our website that further explains how to construct a hardened area - Mud and Manure Management Article (https://extension.oregonstate.edu/animals-livestock/beef/mud-manure-management).
(2020) How to create mud-free livestock areas Managing mud and manure in livestock areas does not have to be a dirty job. Paying attention to drainage and hardening heavily trafficked areas can keep the mud at bay. Here's a step-by-step guide.
(2020) Selenium Fertilization of Pastures for Improved Forage Selenium Content Mineral mixes commonly contain inorganic forms of Se that are poorly absorbed and utilized by ruminants compared with organic forms of Se. Another way to supply Se to livestock is through pasture plants. The enrichment of livestock feed crops with Se has been studied for many years in several countries. When inorganic Se is applied as fertilizer, plants convert it to the organic form, selenomethionine. This is absorbed by the animal and incorporated into tissues at a greater efficiency than inorganic forms.
(2020) Cattle Treatment History Health Record sheets for cattle.
(2020) Stocker Product History Record Health Record sheets for stocker cattle segment.
(2020) Cow-calf Product History Record Health Record sheets for cow-calf segment.
(2020) Cow-Bull Product History Record Health records, product history use sheets for market cows and bulls.
(2019) When should we stop grazing our pasture?
(2019) Improving calf performance by extending the grazing season with warm-season grasses and brassica forages This research project set out to determine whether grazing cow-calf pairs on warm season grasses and brassica pastures would extend the grazing season and positively affect calf weaning weights and other characteristics.
(2011) Basic Nutrient Requirements of Beef Cattle Cattle require certain nutrients in specific amounts in order to grow, thrive, and reproduce. This fact sheet describes the nutrients, explains common terms used in feeds and feeding, and provides lists of nutrient requirements by animal type and productivity level.
(2019) OSU Beef Nutrition Workbook A comprehensive workbook covering many aspects of beef cattle nutrition. Includes worksheets for users to apply the concepts to their own operations. Chapter titles are:
1. Animal Nutrient Requirements
2. Forage Value
3. Evaluating Feeds
4. Minerals and Vitamins
5. Ration Balancing
6. Supplements and Supplementation Strategies
7. Body Condition
8. Heifer Nutrition and Development
(2019) Reproductive management of the cowherd Sound reproductive management of the cowherd, using proven methods, is required to accomplish this goal in a manner that is economically efficient and sustains the natural resources of the ranch.
(2019) How to assess if your livestock are getting the minerals they need Mineral nutrition is critically important to livestock. Yet it is often overlooked, done incorrectly or in need of improvement. Here's how to assess if your animals are getting the minerals they need.
(2019) Strategies for managing pastures during dry conditions Cool-season perennial and annual forages often struggle during the heat of summer. Fortunately, there are some strategies to consider — including planting drought-tolerant forages, warm-season grasses and annual legumes.
(2019) Forages - hay and pasture collection This collection has information on soil testing and ferilizing, renovation. forage management , hay, irrigation, feeding values, forage types, forage anti-quality factors, leasing pastures and more.
(2019) Beef Cattle Collection A list of topics and resources for beef cattle producers
(2019) Keeping livestock healthy starts with the basics Maintaining a healthy environment for raising livestock is essential. Keep pens and barns clean, provide fresh water and good food, and work with a veterinarian to provide preventative measures to keep animals healthy.
(2019) Benefits of belonging to an agriculture organization For farmers and ranchers, belonging to agricultural and ranching associations promotes common interests and fosters connections that are extremely important to the business or pleasure of farming and ranching.
(2019) Services - Producer Organizations Here are some handy links to organizations important to raising livestock and forages and their products.
(2019) A guide to raising calves for home harvest Raising and finishing calves for home harvest can be rewarding, but there are several things to consider so that the process is efficient and the meat is excellent. Here's a guide for success.
(2012) Greener pastures: Improving forage production Every summer we see many of our fields dry up and turn brown. We think about the previous season’s forage and wonder if we could have done better. The anticipation of fall rains brings thoughts of improving on what we have. What should we do?
(2012) Grass is king: Protect the crown The largest agricultural commodity in Oregon is grass. We grow grass for lawns, turf, pastures, hay, straw, and seed for home use and export. Forages (grasses and legumes) are an important source of livestock feed, and because our area has a high production capacity, we have a competitive advantage over other parts of the world that depend heavily on imported hay and grains to raise livestock. Our forage is a renewable resource – but only if we manage it correctly.
(2011) New seeds for an old pasture You’ve decided you want to re-seed your pasture or hay ground, but you are not sure what to plant, when to plant it, and if there is anything you should do before spreading seed over the ground.
(2012) Grazing Basics: Plants & Animals Grazing basics.
(2012) Feeder Cattle Grades, Carcass Grades, & Meat Palatability Review the USDA “standards”, which reflect the value of cattle and meat. Review “Tenderness” of meat. Consider how these affect your production goals.
(2019) Nutrient Management for Pastures: Western Oregon and Western Washington
(1998) Oregon Forage Library The Oregon Forage Library is a collection of hay test results on hay grown around the state. An update to the library is currently in progress. It will contain hay test values found since this publication was written.
(2018) To graze or not to graze that is my question.
(2018) Basic Nutrient Requirements of Beef Cattle - Breeding Cattle (BEEF003) This appendix is associated with the publication "Basic Nutrient Requirements of Beef Cattle." It contains a table of requirements for breeding cattle.
(2018) Forage Nitrate and Prussic Acid Screening Tests Nitrates and Prussic Acid are substances that can accumulate in certain forages and cause poisonings in livestock. Example nitrate accumulators include pigweed, Johnsongrass, and Sorghums. Example prussic acid plants include Sorghums and Johnsongrass. This presentation reviews the toxins, animal response, and testing options.
(2012) Variety in the pasture Forages are a critical part of farming and ranching, and a large variety of grasses and legumes are available for planting in our fields. The more we know about these forages, the better we can choose what we grow and manage it for grazing livestock or hay production. Understanding scientific names botanists give plants can help us keep track of the different forages.
(2013) Western Oregon hay
(2010) Benefits of soil testing to guide pasture fertilization We evaluated the production practices of clientele who use our OSU Extension program information to properly test soil and follow OSU guidelines for fertilizing pastures, and compared that to the standard practices they used prior to using OSU program information to guide their fertilizer applications. The goal of this evaluation is to determine whether our programs lead to improved fertilizer application practices; thereby saving producers money by decreasing the amount of fertilizer applied, increasing forage production with increased type and amount of fertilizer, improving timing of application, and/or using the information to make environmentally prudent decisions in their fertilization program.
(2018) Using soil type to estimate potential forage productivity Information about a pasture's soil can help maximize its production. Here's a step-by-step guide to using the NRCS Web Soil Survey website to gather soil information for specific pastures.
(2015) Grass tetany: Fast growing grass can mean problems. Mature cattle grazing pasture with rapidly growing grass are sometimes found to be afflicted with a disease called grass tetany. It is characterized by an uncoordinated gait (grass staggers), convulsions, coma, and death. The primary cause is limited dietary intake of magnesium (Mg) leading to hypomagnesemia (low blood Mg) in the cow. Cows nearing calving and up to two months post-calving are most susceptible as they must draw on feed and body reserves to supply minerals for milk production. Tetany is rarely observed in younger cattle. In sheep it is not a common problem, but may occur in ewes in the first few weeks after lambing.
(2009) When to consider culling sheep from your flock Culling is the practice of selling off animals that you no longer want to or no longer can keep. People may cull sheep because it makes economic sense, or because they want to improve the health or aesthetics of the flock. It's also important to consider what time of year is best to sell ewes in the public market.
(2019) How to navigate poor marketing conditions for lambs Selling lambs during a down market can be a challenge. If you decide to hold your lambs until the market improves, here are some strategies for feeding and maintaining their health.
(2018) Polypropylene fibers continue to contaminate wool Contamination of wool by polypropylene fibers continues to be a big problem. The fibers come from polypropylene twine, tarps and bags used by sheep growers in their operations. Solving the problem will take vigilance.
(2009) Understanding sheep reproduction helps ranch productivity
(2012) Fewer weeds equals more quality forage
(2010) Forage value of pasture weeds Forage quality of common pasture weeds was determined through laboratory testing to compare feed value of weeds to desirable forage species and nutrient requirements for grazing livestock.
(2012) Avoiding poisonous plants in pasture and hay Poisonous plants in pastures and hay pose a hazard to livestock. Learn how to identify toxic plants and what steps you can take to prevent livestock from consuming them.
(2017) Using a Test Hay for Feeding Livestock Proper nutrition at a lower cost
(2013) To grass or not to grass... That is the calf question When the costs of gain in the finishing phase are high, heavier weight cattle are more attractive to feeders compared to lighter weight cattle. This publication discusses the pros and cons of keeping cattle on grass to gain more weight prior to entering the final growth phase before harvesting.
(2011) Extra pounds on weaned calves may pay dividends Although calves are typically sold for high dollars per pound and at a lighter weight, having the calves sold with higher weight may be worth more than the resources put into making the calf larger.
(2018) Cattle reproduction for next year starts now For cattle producers, a successful calving season is the culmination of year-round effort. It all starts with nutrition for the cows and heifers to ensure they are in the best shape possible for calving. Bull selection matters too. Once calves are born, the process starts all over again and it is critically important to ensure that the interval to a cow's next calf is no more than 365 days. It all adds up to a lot of work, but the bottom line depends on it.
(2018) Advantages to cows and their calves: creep-feeding vs. early weaning Creep-feeding and early weaning are two options for managing cows and calves. Each practice has a specific purpose, but these strategies can be misapplied.
(2010) Get ready for calving season Cattle managers can decrease the amount of calving difficulty through bull selection, nutrition and exercise. Don’t wait until calving begins, follow this checklist and set up the supplies and support you will need.
(2005) How much water do livestock need? An animal’s need for water varies with type of animal and production level, as well as environmental conditions. Proper amounts of good, clean water are important for the health and productivity of the animal. This article will address quantity and quality of water for livestock, and using water to control grazing.
(2018) Mineral requirements and maximum tolerable levels in beef rations Mineral requirements and maximum tolerable levels in beef rations
(2011) Tansy Ragwort Tansy ragwort, an invasive weed that can harm certain types of livestock, is making a comeback in western Oregon. Find out how to control it and protect your animals.
(2018) Timely attention to sheep nutrition can boost number of lambs Increasing nutrition for ewes before breeding begins and in the early weeks of the season can increase the number of lambs born.
(2018) Hay options — when you’re short on hay Sometimes winter and spring weather conditions can lead to a shortage of hay for livestock. Learn what you can do to supplement or stretch your forage while still meeting the nutrition needs of your animals.
(2018) Setting pasture rental rates Rental rates for pasturing cattle and sheep vary depending on animal size or weight, the condition of the pasture, work done by each party and lease length.
(2018) Nutrition for lambing Ewes need more nutrition before and after lambing. Examine feed resources to determine how much to supplement your sheeps' diet, and when.
(2004) Feeding for rebreeding Good nutritional status is one of the most important factors in successful reproduction. This article reviews the nutritional demands, nutrient requirements, and nutrient content of common feeds for mature cows and first-calf heifers after calving and into the breeding season.
(2011) Reducing the stress of weaning beef calves Weaning is stressful for cows, calves and humans too. Here's a look at how livestock producers can reduce the stress of weaning through preparation, timing, proper methods and post-weaning management.
(2005) How to test hay for nutrient content This article explains the different ways of testing hay for livestock consumption. It includes information about analyses, labs and lab methods too.
(2022) Foxtail control in pastures and hayground Foxtail is a problematic grass in pastures and hayground, and infestations need immediate attention. Small infestations of foxtail should be spot treated, while larger infestations require whole pasture renovation. This informational paper describes proper foxtail management and control in a forage setting.
(2018) Matching hay quality to animal nutrient requirements Because feeding costs can account for over 50% of the cost of livestock production, knowing your hay quality and animal requirements can have a significant impact on profitability. As you harvest hay in the spring, you may wonder about the quality of your product. This article addresses the topic of nutrient content of grass/legume hay and the nutrient requirements of livestock that may be consuming it. Some suggestions on how the livestock manger can utilize the hay effectively and efficiently are offered.
(2004) Beef Cattle Nutrition Workbook
(2016) Understanding Your Forage Test Results
(2014) Mistletoe, kiss of death?
(2013) Is permanent marker bad for my sheep?