4H/FFA Dairy Feeder Project

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Roger/OH

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The 2 Grandkids joined 4H and want to do a beef project. I won't have the money to purchase club steers for them to do a market steer project and thinking about a Dairy Feeder project for them. The farmer I buy hay from buys calves from dairy farmers and raises them out. He says the dairy feeders should weight 600 to 700 Lbs by fair time.
If I were to purchase calves from a dairy farmer, when should I purchase them to have them at 600 to 700 lbs. by September 1st?
My boss's son-in-law is a dairy farmer and I plan to talk to him about getting a calf. He does all AIing and it would be a Holstien. Does Holstien EPD's contain rate of growth? Is that something a dairy farmer is concerned about?
I know it is to late for this year, but next year maybe offer to buy him a couple of straws of a good growth rate bull if all he is concerned with is freshening his cows?
 

milkmaid

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If I were to purchase calves from a dairy farmer, when should I purchase them to have them at 600 to 700 lbs. by September 1st?

Well...I had a steer calf, DOB 1/26/05, that sold 10/18/05 at 630lbs. That was at the sale barn, and my guess is without the shrinkage due to stress he was probably 650lbs or so.

That particular calf was raised on a nurse cow and grained at 2% of his body weight the entire time I had him. Now that is a LOT of feed, and pushing him as hard as I could -without costing an arm and a leg- he only ended up at a little over 600lbs by 9 months of age.

I have seen them at 800lbs by 9 months - but that was on a cow and eating dairy quality hay/silage and grain. Not the norm.

If you're going with a bottle calf I'd say give yourself at least 10-12 months to comfortably make that goal of 600-700lbs without too much worry over whether or not they'll make it. So September 1st of next year...back up 11 months...get your calves now.

Alternately, 80lb calf, 11 months (11mon x 30days/mon= 330days), x1.8lb ADG (norm for holsteins on good feed) equals 594lbs of gain, plus inital weight = 674lbs.

I don't believe (most) dairy folks concern themselves too much with rate of growth and average daily gain.
 

shorty

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Check with your local 4-H club , Our club here has you get the calf after feb. 1 and the fair and sale is Labor day weekend. I was at the sale weights ran from 550- 700.
 
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Roger/OH

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A little late, but thanks for the replies. That was the information I was after. Now need to set grandkids down and see how much work they want to do. It is their project not grandpa's. I will expect them out here to help with their calves and chores.
 

JHH

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Roger/OH":1znydm00 said:
A little late, but thanks for the replies. That was the information I was after. Now need to set grandkids down and see how much work they want to do. It is their project not grandpa's. I will expect them out here to help with their calves and chores.

Glad to hear that they may be joining 4-h, but you are right about them doing the feeding and other chores not YOU. To many kids let mom and dad do the work then they just show the calf and expect to get paid for it :shock: JHH
 

DD RANCH

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My kids always talk about showing 4-h calves but never do any more than talk they have ALL winter to work on show calves but come turn out time they all go to grass then about a week before the fair they get all upset cause I wont go catch and train yearlings in a week.I would start them with a rabbit or lambs if they show good work ethic then go for larger animals.
 
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