Breeding for feed efficiency can save $55/ cow/ year in feed costs, said Dr. John Basarab, University of Alberta, at the British Cattle Breeders Conference 2012, highlighting the importance of feed efficiency. Feed efficiency is crucial, Dr. Basarab said, when you consider that 50-70 percent of production costs, whether it be for the cow-calf herd or in the feedlot are associated with feeding. In fact two thirds of the energy that cows consume is used only on maintenance.
IN EFFICIENCY TO DATE
Gross income from calf sales depends on the total pounds of calf sold and dollars per pound received for that calf. Although it is true that calves in lighter weight classes sell for a higher dollar amount per pound, gross income is greater with calves in heavier weight classes due to more pounds sold.
The weight of the weaned calf depends on age at weaning, genetics, and nutritional resources prior to weaning, as well as health and other factors. This article discusses a nutritional management practice that affects calf weaning weight.
The recent boom in ethanol production is having widespread consequences within the various segments of the beef industry. One of those consequences is the volume and variable forms of the distillers’ grains, the byproduct of grain-based ethanol production that are available to cattle feeders. These distiller’s grains, as they are generally referred, come in various forms both dry and wet, and although most are corn based, they can and do come from a variety of other cereal grains.
Nutritional Management of the Calf After Weaning The first 30-45 days after a calf is weaned is perhaps the most stressful period of its life. Good performance and health during this time can set the stage for an efficient and profitable feedout, or a long and productive life in the cow herd. On the other hand, most of the sickness and death loss due to respiratory disease happens at this time. Respiratory disease affects one in 7 feedlot placements and is the leading cause of death loss.