Objective—To determine the biocontainment, biosecurity, and security practices at beef feedyards in the Central Plains of the United States.
Sample Population—Managers of feedyards in Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Texas that feed beef cattle for finish before slaughter; feedyards had to have an active concentrated animal feeding operation permit with a 1-time capacity of ≥ 1,000 cattle.
Procedures—A voluntary survey of feedyard personnel was conducted. Identified feedyard personnel were interviewed and responses regarding facility design, security, employees, disease preparedness, feedstuffs, hospital or treatment systems, sanitation, cattle sources, handling of sick cattle, and disposal of carcasses were collected in a database questionnaire.
Results—The survey was conducted for 106 feedyards with a 1-time capacity that ranged from 1,300 to 125,000 cattle. Feedyards in general did not have high implementation of biocontainment, biosecurity, or security practices. Smaller feedyards were, in general, less likely to use good practices than were larger feedyards.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results of the survey provided standard practices for biocontainment, biosecurity, and security in feedyards located in Central Plains states. Information gained from the survey results can be used by consulting veterinarians and feedyard managers as a basis for discussion and to target training efforts.