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Northwest Iowa Dairy Outlooks

A local discussion of current science and issues concerning dairying in northwest iowa

Category Archives: Sioux County

Rock Valley Hay Auction for Thursday, May 11, 2017

Receipts:  92 loads    Last Week:  76 loads    Last Year:  75 loads

Compared to last week:   Alfalfa and grass hay sold higher, bedding in good condition sold higher, poor quality bedding sold lower.

Alfalfa:  Premium:  Large Square,s 1 load 120.00; Large Rounds, 7 loads 100.00-122.50. Good:  Large Squares, 3 loads 85.00-95.00; Large Rounds, 8 loads 87.50-95.00.  Fair:  Large Rounds, 10 loads 72.50-80.00.  Utility:  Large Squares, 2 loads 62.50-70.00; Large Rounds, 7 loads 57.50-67.50.

Grass:  Premium:  Large Squares, 1 load 105.00; Large Rounds, 2 loads 110.00-120.00. Good:  Large Squares, 1 load 80.00; Large Rounds, 13 loads 80.00-95.00.  Fair:  Large Squares, 1 load 72.50; Large Rounds, 17 loads 60.00-77.50.  Utility:  Large Rounds, 3 loads 37.50-55.00.

Alfalfa/Grass Mix:  Good:  Large Squares, 1 load 105.00; Large Rounds, 4 loads 82.50-92.50.

Straw:  Large Squares, 2 loads 57.50-60.00.  Large Rounds, 4 loads 50.00-65.00.

Cornstalks:  Large Rounds, 5 loads 20.00-35.00.


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Rock Valley Hay Auction for Thursday, Apr 27, 2017

Receipts:  82 loads    Last Week:  71 loads    Last Year:  49 loads

Alfalfa:  Good:  Large Squares, 6 loads 95.00-110.00; Large Rounds, 1 load 102.50. Fair:   Large Squares, 4 loads 75.00-87.50; Large Rounds, 22 loads 67.50-87.50.

Grass:  Premium:  Large Rounds, 2 loads 112.50-115.00.  Good:  Large Squares, 1 load 90.00; Large Rounds, 6 loads 80.00-102.50; Small Squares, 3 loads 90.00-97.50.  Fair:  Large Rounds, 24 loads 67.50-77.50; Small Squares, 108 bales at 2.50 per bale. Utility:  Large Rounds, 1 load 47.50.

Alfalfa/Grass Mix:  Good:  Large Squares, 1 load 107.50.  Fair:  Large Squares, 3 loads 82.50-85.00; Large Rounds, 1 load 87.50.

Straw:  Large Squares, 1 load 70.00.  Large Rounds, 1 load 72.50.

Cornstalks:  Large Squares, 1 load 30.00.  Large Rounds, 3 loads 32.50-40.00.


While horn flies and face flies are most commonly found on cattle in pastures, stable flies and house flies are more commonly found on cattle at the dairy. House flies are a nuisance for workers and cattle, often indicating a general sanitation problem. Stable flies, deer flies and horse flies, feed on blood from the back and legs, with stable flies having a long, bayonet-like proboscis that causes a painful sting.

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The Sioux County Dairy Board has scholarships available for high school seniors and college students. The deadline for both scholarships is May 1, 2017. If you have any questions, please contact


I enjoyed the opportunity to be part of the planning for 2017-18 Dairy Iowa steering committee last week. The discussion resulted in three action items that will be meaningful to the dairymen of Iowa. Including: Telling Iowa’s dairy story with social media training; conducting a comparison of benefits to processors building/expanding in the Midwest plus the states of Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana; and conducting business planning educational programs. All of these will be planned for the next 12-18 months.

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Predictive Equations of Alfalfa Quality (PEAQ) provides an estimate of the quality, measured as Relative Feed Value (RFV), for the first cutting alfalfa standing in the field. Climatic variations impact alfalfa growth and development making it impossible to use a calendar date each spring to best determine when to harvest the first crop. The PEAQ method uses alfalfa stand height and maturity stage to estimate the RFV. It is most appropriate for good stands of pure alfalfa with healthy growth.

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In his March Dairy Budget report UNL Educator Robert Tigner notes returns to management for milk produced in the Central milk market order declined 42 cents/cwt in March 2017 but were still positive at $1.57/cwt. The largest decline was in income with a drop of protein income. As you may know the protein price dropped during March, -1.31555/cwt of 20,000 pound cows, but the PPD increased by $0.48/cwt. Feed costs were slightly lower but less than 1 cents/cwt. The Central Order March butterfat price was virtually the same as Februarys, down less than 1 cents per pound.

His detailed report can found by clicking Copy of March-dairy budget