Submitted to: High Plains Beef Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/19/1999
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Feedyard dust is a nuisance for feedyard managers, owners, and their neighbors. Air quality control agencies are going to monitor feedyard dust to determine the amount of fine dust (2.5 m) in the air. If too much is found, the operators can be fined. The effect of dust on cattle health and production is not known. We purchased 120 calves from three eastern Tennessee auction markets and assembled them in an eastern order-buyer bar (OBB). Three treatment groups (dust, non-dust, and feedyard controls) were each subdivided into an antibiotic and non-antibiotic subgroup at the OBB. Antibiotics were given to the three subgroups at the OBB. On arrival at a research feedyard in Bushland, Texas, the two subgroups (dust group) were challenged with dust in a tent for four hours and again on feedyard (FY) day 2, FY 9, and FY 18. The antibiotics given at the OBB appeared to protect the dusted antibiotic subgroup from slow weight gains seen in the other dusted subgroup. The weight loss was significantly greater on FY days 8, 15 and 22. No effect was seen in the other two treatment groups. This appears to be one way to determine the cost of a quantifiable amount of dust exposure to market-stressed calves.