• If you are having problems logging in please use the Contact Us in the lower right hand corner of the forum page for assistance.

Feeding a Hiefer

A

Anonymous

Guest
I Have a 9 month old heifer that is 50% Holstein, 25% Charolais and 25% Angus. Her weight is about 650 lbs. (wieght was estimated by using body measurments). Since weaning, I have been feeding her 8 lbs. of a steam rolled corn, pellet, oats and molasses mix type food (16% protien) and 25% to 50% of an average quality square bale hay a day. Outside conditions deturmined the amount of feed fed. I have just switched her to a better quailty hay same amount as before and, 8lbs. of a 20% protien dairy pellet per day. Should I continue on this type of a feeding program or should I change something? What has worked for you? Also I think she has already started to show breding behavior such as mounting other cows, making more noise than is normal for her, and acting somewhat restless. Is this normal for her age? Is she already starting to cycle? I raised her since she was one week old so I know this is her true age. Thank you.

[email protected]
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
If you feed too much protein, you will just be wasting money, because it runs right through them. If her manure is really runny and green, cut back on the grain. I can't imagine feeding that much grain. I overfed my cattle on just first cutting alfalfa and straw. Yes, your heifer is cycling. We had one cycle at six months and get pregnant... bummer! It is best to wait until she is about a year old to fifteen months old to breed her. You want her to calve about the time that she turns two years old. I think the secret to feeding your heifer is to give her good quality hay, keeping in mind that she will eat everything you put in front of her.... whether she really needs it or not. Make sure that she is getting a good amount of exercise. Feed on one end of the pasture and water on the other... and shelter in another if that is possible. Make her move a little for her life, otherwise, just like we humans, lots of food plus too little exercise makes little heifers fat, sloppy, and difficult deliveries for their calves. As Dunmovin would tell you LEARN your body scores.... if you can't see some rib... she is probably too fat... What I learned from overfeeding my cattle was: let them eat in the barn for two hours... and even if there is nothing in the field, they will STILL have enough to eat...send them outside and don't let them back into the manger until the next feeding... but when calves get to breeding age, I think the free feeding has to be curtailed.

[email protected]
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Her manure is quite solid and dark brown. As far as exercise goes I think she is part horse because, she runs as fast as she can all around the pasture for no reason, whips around trees so tight you would not believe it unless you saw her and they never slow her down. I can see her first 3 ribs what body score would that be? Is 650 lbs. the average weight for a 9 month old hiefer? I have a 10 month old steer that weights 750 lbs. but I think he is to fat.

> If you feed too much protein, you
> will just be wasting money,
> because it runs right through
> them. If her manure is really
> runny and green, cut back on the
> grain. I can't imagine feeding
> that much grain. I overfed my
> cattle on just first cutting
> alfalfa and straw. Yes, your
> heifer is cycling. We had one
> cycle at six months and get
> pregnant... bummer! It is best to
> wait until she is about a year old
> to fifteen months old to breed
> her. You want her to calve about
> the time that she turns two years
> old. I think the secret to feeding
> your heifer is to give her good
> quality hay, keeping in mind that
> she will eat everything you put in
> front of her.... whether she
> really needs it or not. Make sure
> that she is getting a good amount
> of exercise. Feed on one end of
> the pasture and water on the
> other... and shelter in another if
> that is possible. Make her move a
> little for her life, otherwise,
> just like we humans, lots of food
> plus too little exercise makes
> little heifers fat, sloppy, and
> difficult deliveries for their
> calves. As Dunmovin would tell you
> LEARN your body scores.... if you
> can't see some rib... she is
> probably too fat... What I learned
> from overfeeding my cattle was:
> let them eat in the barn for two
> hours... and even if there is
> nothing in the field, they will
> STILL have enough to eat...send
> them outside and don't let them
> back into the manger until the
> next feeding... but when calves
> get to breeding age, I think the
> free feeding has to be curtailed.

[email protected]
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
In my humble opinion, the manure sounds good... I mean, not too much protein pouring through her. Because she is a heifer, I would expect her to be more feminine than the steer. Are they the same breed? Her Holstein background makes her grow bone before she starts getting fat, I guess. But keep an eye on it. As cattle mature, they don't need the amount of food that one would think, is what my experience has been. I don't know which three ribs are showing, but... if I am reading the "chart" correctly, I am using the dairy chart because she is 50% Holstein, if I remember correctly... it is about the rear view, rather than a side view... In the dairy breed, you want to avoid ANY fat in the tail head area. If you think she is leaning more to the beef side, then she sounds in good shape... somewhere between a five and six. Five being Moderate... all bones covered, but neither fat or thin...six being defined as: Smooth appearance, some fat on back and tail. The other area I would check, if I were you would be the bag area. If you see ANY thickening there, she is getting fat. Any fat on the bag will lessen her ability to feed efficiently, and will NEVER come off. That Holstein part of her is such a big factor, I think.

[email protected]
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
The steer and the heifer were bought off the same farm same father different mothers. The only reason he sold the heifer to me was because she had a beef look to her and he is a dairy farmer and, he thought she was too wild but, he said if he could not get the price he wanted for he was going to keep her because she was very nice in every other way. She looks more dairy then she use to but you can definity see the beef in her. She is very tame I can leed her on a rope anywhere and pet her anywhere, she will even allow me to pick up her feet and pick out stuff from between her toes with a stick. She still runs around crazy in the pasture though. What do you mean by tail head? She has a roll of fat or skin under her tail. Her bag and udders feel very good I can't feel any thickening from fat in these areas.

> In my humble opinion, the manure
> sounds good... I mean, not too
> much protein pouring through her.
> Because she is a heifer, I would
> expect her to be more feminine
> than the steer. Are they the same
> breed? Her Holstein background
> makes her grow bone before she
> starts getting fat, I guess. But
> keep an eye on it. As cattle
> mature, they don't need the amount
> of food that one would think, is
> what my experience has been. I
> don't know which three ribs are
> showing, but... if I am reading
> the "chart" correctly, I
> am using the dairy chart because
> she is 50% Holstein, if I remember
> correctly... it is about the rear
> view, rather than a side view...
> In the dairy breed, you want to
> avoid ANY fat in the tail head
> area. If you think she is leaning
> more to the beef side, then she
> sounds in good shape... somewhere
> between a five and six. Five being
> Moderate... all bones covered, but
> neither fat or thin...six being
> defined as: Smooth appearance,
> some fat on back and tail. The
> other area I would check, if I
> were you would be the bag area. If
> you see ANY thickening there, she
> is getting fat. Any fat on the bag
> will lessen her ability to feed
> efficiently, and will NEVER come
> off. That Holstein part of her is
> such a big factor, I think.

[email protected]
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
The tail head area is that area where the tail is attached to the body. If you feel outward and down from there, you will find the pin bones, which are also the pelvic area. You want a bit of hollow under the tail head... you don't want any fat on the pelic bones, or at least VERY little. It sounds like you have done a good job in gentling your heifer. She may run around like a nut when it is "play" time, but that just means she is feeling good. As long as she can and will control herself when you ask it of her, then I don't think one could ask for any more. i have heard, that heifers take after their dads, while the bull calves favor their mothers... go figure.... the guy on this list that seems to really know body scores is Dunmovin, and he will probably be weighing in with his expertise at any time. I like the idea that you can see ribs... that is another sign that she isn't too over fed, I think.... My experience was that once I couldn't see the ribs, the weight went on like a house afire.... with beef cattle, the ribs are the real measure, but the tailhead and pelvic bones are good to keep an eye on, also. No matter the breed, the various points of attention all lead to a way to measure your heifer's health. I think that the chart I was using were just different aspects. but, I think, it goes to either breed -- the whole animal.

[email protected]
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Wow! I guess I have fat calves mine average 100 lbs.of weight gain a month. It must be the Limo bulls I use? They start out small 50-75 lbs. Most of the calves get hauled to the auction and are weighed there. Last year I early weaned at 4 mos. and they were all over 400 lbs.

[email protected]
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
You're right. Good calves aught to gain 100# a month. By the way - mine are Simmental. Jeanne <A HREF="http://www.SimmeValley.com" TARGET="_blank">http://www.SimmeValley.com</A>

> Wow! I guess I have fat calves
> mine average 100 lbs.of weight
> gain a month. It must be the Limo
> bulls I use? They start out small
> 50-75 lbs. Most of the calves get
> hauled to the auction and are
> weighed there. Last year I early
> weaned at 4 mos. and they were all
> over 400 lbs.

[email protected]
 

Latest posts

Top