Beef Buzz News
Three Easily Manipulable Factors Maximize Profits From Replacement Heifers
Wed, 12 Sep 2012 15:45:08 CDT
Rick Funston talks more about maximizing profits with replacement heifers.
In the third of a three-part Beef Buzz series with beef cattle scientist Rick Funston from the University of Nebraska, he talks more about the role proper nutrition plays in replacement heifers. He says lower quality forages are fine because the goal is not maximum weight gain. And, he says, studies show that lighter weight heifers are more successfully bred when it's time to turn them in with the bulls.
"It's counterintuitive to think that a lighter heifer is going to breed better than a heavier heifer. The issue is with what she's used to."
Funston says when turned out on pasture, the lighter heifers actually gained a pound more per day than the heavier heifers who had been fed in the dry lot. He said that is probably the reason they bred better. He says this is good news for producers.
"We can manipulate these things and it's at less cost. It's cheaper and we get a higher preg rate. "
Research that Funston has participated in involving artificial insemination shows that heifers weighing 665 pounds had a pregnancy rate of 86 percent while 727-pound heifers had a settling rate of 58 percent.
Funston said the combination of three factors-breeding heifers at lighter weights, breeding them early in the season, and using lower quality forage before turning them out to pasture--all add up to higher profits for producers.
The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
Click here to listen to Part I of Ron Hays' interview with Rick Funston.
Click here for Part II.
right-click to download mp3
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