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Condition of a young bull with cows?

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BARNSCOOP

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What type of condition would you expect to see a 19-20 month old bull in if he were with 20 cows for two months in the spring, grazing only fescue with no grain, and of the Shorthorn breed? Would you expect that he would loose weight?
 

kenny thomas

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What condition was he in when turned with the cows. 20 cows is pushing it if he was off heavy feed and was fat when turned in. Probably pushing it anyway. If he was in good condition but not too fat he might loose 100-150 lb.
 
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BARNSCOOP

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He has never been on feed at all. When I saw him he had just been pulled from the cows the first of June and the owner said the cows had not cycled again so he expected they were all bred but it was to soon to tell.
 

Red Bull Breeder

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I have a 18 month old running with 37 cows and heifers he has lost some weight but is still in good working condition. He should do alright.
 

novaman

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Red Bull Breeder":hme6k0dz said:
I have a 18 month old running with 37 cows and heifers he has lost some weight but is still in good working condition. He should do alright.
Similar deal here. 20 month old running with 34 head. Condition depends on the rain. Sometimes they lose some, sometimes they don't.
 

cypressfarms

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I've always went by the golden rule of only letting a young bull service as many cows as he is old. That is until they are full two year olds. I've seen yearling bulls run themselves to the point of not eating and losing a lot of weight. Not what you'd want in a growing bull. The biggerst reasons I even put young bulls on cows are to:

1. Get them accustomed to the breeding cows.

2. See (in a small # of calves) what their offspring would look like.

I know everyone doesn't have that luxury, but that's what I do. :)
 

mnmtranching

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I'm comfortable with putting a yearling bull with 20 cows. Depending on his condition at the start. If a young bull is pushed with hard feed and fat he might lose 100 pounds and more, and depends on the quality of the forage. If the bull is in working condition and on decent pasture his frame should continue growing even though he may not gain weight.
 

randiliana

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Well, here is a bull, born May 8, 2007, so a little older than yours.

Before, taken about May 5.



After he'd been with 38 heifers for about 6 weeks. Taken July 7
 
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BARNSCOOP

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Gosh, He looks good. He may have lost a little but not much. Is he yours? The reason I ask is that I have heard that some push the grain when they are young for awhile knowing they will go in with the girls. I am really asking the question in general because I purchased a young bull that had been in with 19-20 cows starting at 19 mths of age and had no down time to speak of when he came to me a month ago and is now with six cows. He is of the Shorthorn breed and has never had grain other than just enough to keep the herd coming up to the owner. He looks thin but his pedgree is a high ww, yw weight. He had a 610, 205 day weight. The former owners manage there cattle very well so I know he has had all that he needs. And he sure has it here. I am just hope he will bounce back soon and this is not his normal look.
 

randiliana

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BARNSCOOP":1hkwbzpz said:
Gosh, He looks good. He may have lost a little but not much. Is he yours? The reason I ask is that I have heard that some push the grain when they are young for awhile knowing they will go in with the girls. I am really asking the question in general because I purchased a young bull that had been in with 19-20 cows starting at 19 mths of age and had no down time to speak of when he came to me a month ago and is now with six cows. Now, he is of the Shorthorn breed and has never had grain other than with a just enough to keep the herd coming up to the owner. He looks thin but his pedgree is a high ww, yw weight. He had a 610, 205 day weight. The former owners manage there cattle very well so I know he has had all that he needs. And he sure has it here. I am just hope he will bounce back soon and this is not his normal look.

Thanks, he has lost a bit, but not enough to hurt him. He is our bull, we bought him this spring. The first picture was taken a couple of days after he was delivered. Grain is fine I think, but too much of a good thing isn't always good. Some young bulls are pushed too hard, and they simply melt away as soon as they are put to work. Genetics probably have as much to do with it as feed though. Take a pen of similarly developed bulls, some will hold their condition relatively well, and some will lose way too much. The size of the area they have to cover to breed cows will also impact their condition. Our fella is on 3 quarter sections, but the heifers tend to hang together. A lot of bulls around her go into pastures that are several sections(640 acres) in size, there will be several bulls, and the cows will be spread out all over the place. That is really hard on a younger bull.

I think the 2 year into 3 year stage is the hardest to keep condition on an animal, whether a bull or a cow. They lose their baby teeth somewhere in here, which means they can't graze as effectively, they are still growing as well, and we are asking them to either breed a bunch of cows, or raise a baby. Once they hit that 3 year stage, they usually come back into normal condition and start gaining again. Of course if you are graining them, that will help them maintain themselves. Deworming them will also help.
 

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