Submitted to: Florida Cattleman and Livestock Journal
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 2, 2006
Publication Date: July 29, 2006
Citation: Coleman, S.W., Chase, C., Riley, D.G. 2006. Cow efficiency and adaptation part II: interactions of genetics and nutrition. Florida Cattleman and Livestock Journal. 70(8):42-46.
The beef cattle industry has identified a large framed feeder that will finish at high select or low choice, yield grad 2 as ‘acceptable’. Acceptable carcass weight has been creeping up with a maximum now at about 400 kg. The difficulty for the southeaster USA and the Gulf Coast is that the kind of cow necessary to produce an acceptable feeder may not fit the environment and the feed resources available. Nutritional by genetic interactions have been demonstrated. Large framed, high milking cows produce larger calves at weaning if nutrition is available to support them. When the nutritional source is lower in quality, no difference in large and small framed cows were noted. In other work, F1 cows from continental crosses were more efficient at higher levels of nutrition, but cows were more efficient at low to medium levels of nutrition. These studies point out the importance of building a cow herd that fits the feed resources available.