calf size

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Mar 6, 2007
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south central indiana
How much influence does the bull have in the size of the calf? How much influence does nutrition of the cow have on the size of the calf? In the past, we used a low birth weight bull, and all the calves were within 5 lbs of each other at birth. This year, we used a new bull (not knowing his EPDs but that was okay because we didn't have any heifers), and the calves' weights are all over the place - some 60 lbs, some close to 100 lbs. Just doesn't seem to be any consistency in calf size.
I feel it is about 50/50 but nutrition/environment plays a huge part on the cows influence.. Like last year ( '08 ) we had record lows and the cows/heifers consumed more feed than usual, higher birth weights were recorded across the board in those areas..
Is there any consistency in cow size? A cow is half the genetics but 100% of the environment, what she eats, how much she eats, quality of feed, add in weather (v.cold or v.warm weather influences birthweight) gestation length and that nature itself determines that a cow will try and produce about 7% of her bodyweight in deliverable calf for pure survivability terms.
Sort of the same topic came up when I was yacking with the vet the other day. For some reason this year there is no consistancy in calf sizes. This year some cows are having much smaller calves then usual and others are having much larger calves then normal. We've only had a couple that have had calves the size they have had in previsou years. The vet said he is seeing the same hting in all of the herds he's worked with.