The Texas cattle herd continues to shrink. Texas AgriLife officials expect another 2 percent to 3 percent drop this year.
The drop may not be as large as the big sell-off in 2011 but the contraction will continue, says Dr. Ron Gill , AgriLife Extension livestock specialist and associate animal science department head at Texas A&M University, College Station.
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“We’re projecting it to be somewhere around 3.8 million calves,” Gill said “Last year was kind of static, down a little bit from 2012,” he said. “We saw the big drop in 2011, but we do have a further contraction in the cow herd.”
Cold weather this winter should have minimal effect.  Though there were reports of minor frostbite in calves born in the extremely cold weather this winter, it shouldn’t affect the total calf crop, Gill said.