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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Post-weaning performance of fall-born beef steers weaned from endophyte-infected tall fescue pastures on different dates in the spring.)

Author
item Caldwell, James
item Coffey, Kenneth
item Coblentz, Wayne
item Ogden, Robin
item Jennings, John
item Hubbell, Donald
item Krieder, David
item Rosenkrans, Charles

Submitted to: Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station Research Series
Publication Type: Experiment station
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/15/2008
Publication Date: 12/1/2008
Citation: Caldwell, J.D., Coffey, K.P., Coblentz, W.K., Ogden, R.K., Jennings, J.A., Hubbell, D.S., Krieder, D.L., Rosenkrans, C.F. 2008. Post-weaning performance of fall-born beef steers weaned from endophyte-infected tall fescue pastures on different dates in the spring. Research Series 563. Arkansas Animal Science Department Report 2008. (11):35-36.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Weaning fall-born calves grazing tall fescue infected with the toxic wild-type endophyte (E+) prior to early May should reduce exposure of those calves to E+ toxins, resulting in improved long-term animal performance. However, a previous study did not support this hypothesis. Gelbvieh × Angus crossbred steer calves (n = 118) were used in a 3-yr study to determine the optimal time to wean fall-born calves grazing E+ fescue. Fall-calving cow-calf pairs were allocated by weight and age immediately prior to the onset of calving to 1 of 4 weaning dates: 1) March 16 (177 ± 4.7 d of age; MarW), 2) April 13 (204 ± 4.7 d of age; AprW), 3) May 11 (236 ± 4.7 d of age;MayW), and 4) June 8 (264 ± 4.7 d of age; JuneW). The MarW and AprW calves were moved to wheat pasture whereas MayW and JuneW were moved to bermudagrass pastures following a 14-d fence-line weaning program. Steer BW at weaning increased (P < 0.05), and BW at feedlot shipment tended to increase (P = 0.06) linearly across weaning dates, but steer BW at the end of the feedlot period and ADG during the feedlot period did not differ (P = 0.19) across weaning dates. Hot carcass weight and backfat tended to increase (P = 0.10) linearly across weaning dates. Therefore, weaning fall-born steer calves from E+ pastures later had short-term benefits, but these BW benefits did not persist during the feedlot period.

Last Modified: 8/24/2016
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