Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Backgrounding & feeding questions.
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Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by Lucky » Sat Jul 07, 2018 7:17 pm

Wondering if anyone plans on creep feeding thier calves this year? I’m kicking around starting 2 months before I wean them. So sometime between August 15th and September 1st I would need to put them on feed and wean them around Oct. 15th. I’m wondering how much they will eat per head. I’m guessing a 425 avg in mid Aug., so my guess would be 3-5#’s a day. What have y’all experienced doing this?



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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by Bright Raven » Sat Jul 07, 2018 7:33 pm

I start mine as soon as they learn to enter the creep area. They start nosing around in the feeders at about a month old. By 6 weeks they are eating daily. I do all fall calving so it takes pressure off the dam and I see better performance.
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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by JMJ Farms » Sat Jul 07, 2018 7:51 pm

I feed anytime the cost of gain is less than expected price per pound. As long as you’re not retaining heifers and don’t get the calves too fleshy I really don’t know what it hurts. Gets them used to eating before weaning as well.
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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by snoopdog » Sat Jul 07, 2018 8:27 pm

I, personally can't make it pencil out most of the time . If you wean in October, in your area you should be able to have wheat up tall enough to get better results I would think . But , as we all know mother nature has a little bit of say in that , and /or you can't dedicate a paddock to wheat . If you wean on the trailer , there may very well be an advantage , but in my experience winter wheat gains post weaning are very cost effective ,ymmv.
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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by Hogtiming » Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:34 pm

Here it pencils out feed is .08-.12 per pound of feed. We feed as soon as they will eat and they do not stop eating until they are picked up by the buyer. Really helps with the weaning process here. I also have basically all fescue

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by NEFarmwife » Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:16 am

We aren't. We have in the past. I know my FIL is creeping his but we chose not to with our herd. 2 years ago, they didn't even touch the feeder. Last year, when we fed, they just treated themselves occasionally. This year, I saw an article about breakdown of gain on creep and it's cost (UNL Article) http://newsroom.unl.edu/announce/beef/7865/45841 and decided to opt out of it all together this year. We decided if our pastures were in need of rain, we'd throw some creep out there but we've been extremely fortunate with rainfall this summer!

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by Lucky » Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:01 pm

NEFarmwife wrote:We aren't. We have in the past. I know my FIL is creeping his but we chose not to with our herd. 2 years ago, they didn't even touch the feeder. Last year, when we fed, they just treated themselves occasionally. This year, I saw an article about breakdown of gain on creep and it's cost (UNL Article) http://newsroom.unl.edu/announce/beef/7865/45841 and decided to opt out of it all together this year. We decided if our pastures were in need of rain, we'd throw some creep out there but we've been extremely fortunate with rainfall this summer!


Thanks for posting that article, it was a good read. I was expecting 4-5 pounds a day. Thing I missed in that article was how long were the calves on creep feed?

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by NEFarmwife » Fri Jul 13, 2018 7:43 am

Lucky wrote:
NEFarmwife wrote:We aren't. We have in the past. I know my FIL is creeping his but we chose not to with our herd. 2 years ago, they didn't even touch the feeder. Last year, when we fed, they just treated themselves occasionally. This year, I saw an article about breakdown of gain on creep and it's cost (UNL Article) http://newsroom.unl.edu/announce/beef/7865/45841 and decided to opt out of it all together this year. We decided if our pastures were in need of rain, we'd throw some creep out there but we've been extremely fortunate with rainfall this summer!


Thanks for posting that article, it was a good read. I was expecting 4-5 pounds a day. Thing I missed in that article was how long were the calves on creep feed?

Had to dig a little deeper into the hyperlinks.
3Creep: unrestricted access by the calf to creep feed from July 15 to Nov 1.
They were March born calves and weaned in early December.

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by Lucky » Fri Jul 13, 2018 4:42 pm

NEFarmwife wrote:
Lucky wrote:
NEFarmwife wrote:We aren't. We have in the past. I know my FIL is creeping his but we chose not to with our herd. 2 years ago, they didn't even touch the feeder. Last year, when we fed, they just treated themselves occasionally. This year, I saw an article about breakdown of gain on creep and it's cost (UNL Article) http://newsroom.unl.edu/announce/beef/7865/45841 and decided to opt out of it all together this year. We decided if our pastures were in need of rain, we'd throw some creep out there but we've been extremely fortunate with rainfall this summer!


Thanks for posting that article, it was a good read. I was expecting 4-5 pounds a day. Thing I missed in that article was how long were the calves on creep feed?

Had to dig a little deeper into the hyperlinks.
3Creep: unrestricted access by the calf to creep feed from July 15 to Nov 1.
They were March born calves and weaned in early December.


Thanks for looking that up. I dug around but overlooked it I guess. Those dates line up with what I was planning on doing. I calve from Feb.7 - May 1 with 85% born by mid March. Was planning on creep feeding from July 15th to Oct.15 or so when I wean calves.

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by hornedfrogbbq » Mon Jul 16, 2018 5:53 pm

JMJ Farms wrote:I feed anytime the cost of gain is less than expected price per pound. As long as you’re not retaining heifers and don’t get the calves too fleshy I really don’t know what it hurts. Gets them used to eating before weaning as well.


Are you saying you wouldn't creep feed heifers you want to retain because their BCS would be a 6 plus? They'd be too fat? Or is there some other reason?

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by JMJ Farms » Mon Jul 16, 2018 5:59 pm

hornedfrogbbq wrote:
JMJ Farms wrote:I feed anytime the cost of gain is less than expected price per pound. As long as you’re not retaining heifers and don’t get the calves too fleshy I really don’t know what it hurts. Gets them used to eating before weaning as well.


Are you saying you wouldn't creep feed heifers you want to retain because their BCS would be a 6 plus? They'd be too fat? Or is there some other reason?


If you over feed heifers that are to be retained for breeding they can develop fat in the udders. Over feeding can cause conception, calving, and milking problems for the life of the cow. As a general rule I raise them on pasture and supplement about 4 pounds per head per day of a 12-14% feed so as to not over condition them.
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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by hornedfrogbbq » Mon Jul 16, 2018 6:04 pm

JMJ Farms wrote:
hornedfrogbbq wrote:
JMJ Farms wrote:I feed anytime the cost of gain is less than expected price per pound. As long as you’re not retaining heifers and don’t get the calves too fleshy I really don’t know what it hurts. Gets them used to eating before weaning as well.


Are you saying you wouldn't creep feed heifers you want to retain because their BCS would be a 6 plus? They'd be too fat? Or is there some other reason?


If you over feed heifers that are to be retained for breeding they can develop fat in the udders. Over feeding can cause conception, calving, and milking problems for the life of the cow. As a general rule I raise them on pasture and supplement about 4 pounds per head per day of a 12-14% feed so as to not over condition them.


Thank you. We have not noticed that issue but we also don't creep feed a ton.

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by elkwc » Mon Jul 16, 2018 6:39 pm

The last few years we creep fed at least 80% of the calves. This year the only calves getting creep are the calves on the heifers. A couple of reasons for that. First hope it boosts them a little so we can wean a little earlier and give the heifers a little more time to recover before calving again. And we had one without a mother in there we wanted to supply some feed too. We will likely put out some creep about a month before we wean the bigger bunch. I feel if they are eating well they don't slow down much if any when weaned. Hopefully in two years we will have it where we calf only twice a year in 60 day time frames. Then we will likely creep all calves the last 4-6 weeks unless it is dry then may start earlier. I haven't seen any issue with creeping heifers we retain. Also we run most on wheat pasture after weaning if we have any. Again haven't seen any issue. But after they come off in the spring of their yearling year they won't see any more wheat pasture and only cake at least until they calf.

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by 5S Cattle » Tue Jul 17, 2018 9:57 pm

I was creeping some calves on first calf heifers but the hogs are getting more than the calves. Can’t afford to feed 20-30 of those bastards every night

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Re: Anyone Creep Feeding Calves?

Post by backhoeboogie » Wed Jul 18, 2018 9:15 am

Creep feeding is something I am generally opposed to. But with pastures burned up and everything brown, hay cost being awful, it might pencil in a little better this year. Feed prices have not sky rocketed light hay cost has.
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