Oregon State University has hired Juliana Ranches as its new extension beef specialist in Burns, Ore.

She started this month at the Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center in Burns, where she succeeds Reinaldo Cooke. Cooke moved to Texas A&M University.

Ranches is an assistant professor in the Department of Animal and Rangeland Sciences. The Brazil native interned with Cooke in Burns while completing a bachelor’s degree at Universidade Estadual Paulista-Botucatu in 2013. She earned a master’s degree in 2016 and doctorate in 2019, both from the University of Florida.

Ranches has focused her research in areas including:

• Identifying cost-effective nutritional strategies for cow-calf operations and improving their mineral nutrition.

• Identifying pre-weaning nutrition and management strategies for improving calf health and performance.

• Understanding cattle maternal behavior and its impact on the calf at weaning.

• Understanding cattle and wildlife interactions to develop deterrent strategies.

She told Capital Press that she also plans to research cattle nutrition and management during their first few weeks in the feedlot. With colleagues in Burns, she aims to research supplements that could overcome low protein levels of some forages found in sagebrush-steppe landscapes.

“I am happy to be here, and it’s going to be a great experience,” said Ranches, who grew up around her grandparents’ farm that produced oranges and cattle.

She plans to stay in contact with Cooke and seek input as opportunities arise. “He knows the region and people well,” she said.

OSU said Ranches will focus on beef cattle producers and their operations in her work and include workshops and training.

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