Preconditioning questions

Backgrounding & feeding questions.
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dun
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Re: Preconditioning questions

Postby dun » Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:21 am

Only way to know would be to do it.
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ddd75
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Re: Preconditioning questions

Postby ddd75 » Sat Jan 13, 2018 9:15 am

use implants if you are not.
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tnwalkingred
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Re: Preconditioning questions

Postby tnwalkingred » Sun Jan 14, 2018 5:08 pm

MidTenn,

I've been feeding my own weaned calves for a while now but am going to begin purchasing calves to feed out as well. I never truly "tracked" the feed cost and gain as I wasn't trying to make money by making a certain ADG. I feed the steers so they can be sold as weaned and on feed and I feed the heifers in order to give them a better start before we AI them. I know what I spend on feed each year but those costs went directly into the cow/calf operation budget as a whole since I 'm normally supplementing some lactating cows as well. I've been feeding my calves an average of 3-5 pounds a day with free choice forage (hay or pasture). I'm feeding the Co-Op 94176 feed. I believe it's around $220/ton.

I've been inputting various sets of data in the calve feeding business model and what I've learned is the way to maximize $/hd is to figure out what your "cost of gain" is with different feed scenarios and then try to see what best fits the local market and demand. The points made here by Dun and Texasbred are very interesting to me about calves becoming too fleshy and in turn being docked. I think there's a case to be made for a higher ADG of say 3.5 and also one to be made for 2-2.5

The rule of thumb I've always been told to go by is the 4:1 rule. For every 4 pounds of feed you get 1 pound of gain. There is some university research that backs that up as well. I know personally we are going to try some small groups (20-25) at first and track the inputs very closely. We will most likely try a few different feeds and see where we wind up with ADG and cost of gain. These should be pretty easy to figure out. Now knowing what the market wants in an "ideal" calf is something I think we are going to have to figure out with lots of experience.
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Midtenn
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Re: Preconditioning questions

Postby Midtenn » Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:14 pm

tnwalkingred wrote:MidTenn,

I've been feeding my own weaned calves for a while now but am going to begin purchasing calves to feed out as well. I never truly "tracked" the feed cost and gain as I wasn't trying to make money by making a certain ADG. I feed the steers so they can be sold as weaned and on feed and I feed the heifers in order to give them a better start before we AI them. I know what I spend on feed each year but those costs went directly into the cow/calf operation budget as a whole since I 'm normally supplementing some lactating cows as well. I've been feeding my calves an average of 3-5 pounds a day with free choice forage (hay or pasture). I'm feeding the Co-Op 94176 feed. I believe it's around $220/ton.

I've been inputting various sets of data in the calve feeding business model and what I've learned is the way to maximize $/hd is to figure out what your "cost of gain" is with different feed scenarios and then try to see what best fits the local market and demand. The points made here by Dun and Texasbred are very interesting to me about calves becoming too fleshy and in turn being docked. I think there's a case to be made for a higher ADG of say 3.5 and also one to be made for 2-2.5

The rule of thumb I've always been told to go by is the 4:1 rule. For every 4 pounds of feed you get 1 pound of gain. There is some university research that backs that up as well. I know personally we are going to try some small groups (20-25) at first and track the inputs very closely. We will most likely try a few different feeds and see where we wind up with ADG and cost of gain. These should be pretty easy to figure out. Now knowing what the market wants in an "ideal" calf is something I think we are going to have to figure out with lots of experience.


Sounds like your and my scenarios are pretty close. Like you I keep them mainly so I can sell as weaned and vac'd, and not really ever tried for alot of gain. It's a little disheartening when you wean in order to give them what the market wants and then 60 days later the market suddenly wants 500 pound calves right off the cow. I can't figure for the life of me why, considering the way the weather is here right now.
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kenny thomas
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Re: Preconditioning questions

Postby kenny thomas » Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:21 pm

Midtenn wrote:
tnwalkingred wrote:MidTenn,

I've been feeding my own weaned calves for a while now but am going to begin purchasing calves to feed out as well. I never truly "tracked" the feed cost and gain as I wasn't trying to make money by making a certain ADG. I feed the steers so they can be sold as weaned and on feed and I feed the heifers in order to give them a better start before we AI them. I know what I spend on feed each year but those costs went directly into the cow/calf operation budget as a whole since I 'm normally supplementing some lactating cows as well. I've been feeding my calves an average of 3-5 pounds a day with free choice forage (hay or pasture). I'm feeding the Co-Op 94176 feed. I believe it's around $220/ton.

I've been inputting various sets of data in the calve feeding business model and what I've learned is the way to maximize $/hd is to figure out what your "cost of gain" is with different feed scenarios and then try to see what best fits the local market and demand. The points made here by Dun and Texasbred are very interesting to me about calves becoming too fleshy and in turn being docked. I think there's a case to be made for a higher ADG of say 3.5 and also one to be made for 2-2.5

The rule of thumb I've always been told to go by is the 4:1 rule. For every 4 pounds of feed you get 1 pound of gain. There is some university research that backs that up as well. I know personally we are going to try some small groups (20-25) at first and track the inputs very closely. We will most likely try a few different feeds and see where we wind up with ADG and cost of gain. These should be pretty easy to figure out. Now knowing what the market wants in an "ideal" calf is something I think we are going to have to figure out with lots of experience.


Sounds like your and my scenarios are pretty close. Like you I keep them mainly so I can sell as weaned and vac'd, and not really ever tried for alot of gain. It's a little disheartening when you wean in order to give them what the market wants and then 60 days later the market suddenly wants 500 pound calves right off the cow. I can't figure for the life of me why, considering the way the weather is here right now.

The market may want 500 lb calves but they always want the preconditioned calves more if they find them the right size.
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