Finished steer

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How do all of you decide when a steer is finished and ready to process? What do you personally look for? I know the most common is to feed out for 60 - 100 or so days but all cattle do not fill out the same. I am just interested in how all of you feed out to finish a steer.
Thanks!
 

Craig-TX

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Ours stay on grass and their momma until D-day. We just pick out the best looking of the bunch and consider it finished when it looks like it will fit the available freezer space. In other words most of the calves we slaughter are 600 to 700 pounds. That’s just what works for us. Your own convenience should be more of a factor than trying to follow some specific set of rules. If you want to put them on grain for a while that’s fine but it’s not necessary for a good beef.

Craig-TX
 

Ellie May

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The weight it is suppose to be, plus the way it looks. I guess you have to have an eye for it. Sorta. It's briscket needs to be big, and solid body.
Ellie May
 

lazyhill

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I look for a combination of age and weight. This can vary significantly by breed since different breeds mature at different times and therefore will have different levels of marbling at this ages.

Like Craig, I prefer a grass finished product as the meat is leaner, and I think, tastier. Look for something around possibly 18 months or 800 lbs.
 

Kelly

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I think it probably is easier to grass feed beef in the south where you have a longer growing season. Since I live in Minnesota where we aren't that lucky I guess that is why I haven't thought twice about finishing with grain. I would assume hay would not really qualify!
 

D.R. Cattle

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lazyhill":3pg1fxyh said:
I look for a combination of age and weight. This can vary significantly by breed since different breeds mature at different times and therefore will have different levels of marbling at this ages.

Like Craig, I prefer a grass finished product as the meat is leaner, and I think, tastier. Look for something around possibly 18 months or 800 lbs.
18 months sounds good but most would be quite a bit heavier than that at that age.
 

dun

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Depends on the breed (Dexter) and the quality of the grass that they are being finished on. Our heifers, traditional british cross breeds winter on grass, hay if there is snow, without grain unless we have a very severe cold spell. As yearlings (12 months) they will weigh in the neighborhood of 700-800 lbs.
Early maturing breeds should in theory finish faster on grass, and if that grass would be winter wheat, annual rye, rye grass, etc., they would finish even faster and heavier.

dun

D.R. Cattle":3619o8y6 said:
lazyhill":3619o8y6 said:
I look for a combination of age and weight. This can vary significantly by breed since different breeds mature at different times and therefore will have different levels of marbling at this ages.

Like Craig, I prefer a grass finished product as the meat is leaner, and I think, tastier. Look for something around possibly 18 months or 800 lbs.
18 months sounds good but most would be quite a bit heavier than that at that age.
 

lazyhill

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dun":151pinl1 said:
Depends on the breed (Dexter) and the quality of the grass that they are being finished on. Our heifers, traditional british cross breeds winter on grass, hay if there is snow, without grain unless we have a very severe cold spell. As yearlings (12 months) they will weigh in the neighborhood of 700-800 lbs.
Early maturing breeds should in theory finish faster on grass, and if that grass would be winter wheat, annual rye, rye grass, etc., they would finish even faster and heavier.

dun

D.R. Cattle":151pinl1 said:
lazyhill":151pinl1 said:
I look for a combination of age and weight. This can vary significantly by breed since different breeds mature at different times and therefore will have different levels of marbling at this ages.

Like Craig, I prefer a grass finished product as the meat is leaner, and I think, tastier. Look for something around possibly 18 months or 800 lbs.
18 months sounds good but most would be quite a bit heavier than that at that age.

I know that I'm going to get crucified here so be gentle. We actually prefer to butcher a longhorn steer each year instead of our brangus cattle. We prefer the leaner beef and the market is just too high right now to be eating a brangus.
 

TXBobcat

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lazyhillI know that I'm going to get crucified here so be gentle. We actually prefer to butcher a longhorn steer each year instead of our brangus cattle. We prefer the leaner beef and the market is just too high right now to be eating a brangus.[/quote said:
I am feeding out a longhorn steer out for butcher right now. This will be the first longhorn beef I've ate, that I know about. The calf is 16 months old and I would say he weighs around 500lbs. He has been on grass until about 3 1/2 weeks ago when I penned him up. He is getting around 15lbs creep pellets a day, divided into 2 feedings.
 

TXBobcat

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He was born Feb of 03, so he is 14 months old, not 16. I still say he would weigh in the 500-600 lb range. All I can say is that without feed, just grass, all the longhorn cattle on the ranch grow a lot slower than other cattle I've been around.

Lazyhill - At what age and weight do your longhorn steers finish out?
 

lazyhill

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Typically around 18 months and 800 lbs. Even within different longhorn bloodlines this can very significantly. Longhorns do finish out much slower than other breeds and at a lower weight. You will also only average about 60% of live weight at slaughter. This depends upon what all you keep and what all you let the butcher keep as far as cuts go. We don't keep the tongue and miscellaneous other items that we do not use or know of anyone who does.
 

A. delaGarza

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lazyhill":20qncgd3 said:
dun":20qncgd3 said:
Depends on the breed (Dexter) and the quality of the grass that they are being finished on. Our heifers, traditional british cross breeds winter on grass, hay if there is snow, without grain unless we have a very severe cold spell. As yearlings (12 months) they will weigh in the neighborhood of 700-800 lbs.
Early maturing breeds should in theory finish faster on grass, and if that grass would be winter wheat, annual rye, rye grass, etc., they would finish even faster and heavier.

dun

D.R. Cattle":20qncgd3 said:
lazyhill":20qncgd3 said:
I look for a combination of age and weight. This can vary significantly by breed since different breeds mature at different times and therefore will have different levels of marbling at this ages.

Like Craig, I prefer a grass finished product as the meat is leaner, and I think, tastier. Look for something around possibly 18 months or 800 lbs.
18 months sounds good but most would be quite a bit heavier than that at that age.

I know that I'm going to get crucified here so be gentle. We actually prefer to butcher a longhorn steer each year instead of our brangus cattle. We prefer the leaner beef and the market is just too high right now to be eating a brangus.

If you prefer leaner beef is correct to butcher a Longhorn steer for freezer beef, but if it is just because the market $$$ that you are butchering a Longhorn for your freezer I won't do it myself.
I prefer the best for my freezer and the "best" does not means back fat it means taste & tenderness.
 

lazyhill

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I agree with what you are saying. Let me clarify if I can. It does not make much sense to butcher a steer that I can get top dollar for when I have a lower dollar steer that will taste just as well.
 

A. delaGarza

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lazyhill":18p5jeto said:
I agree with what you are saying. Let me clarify if I can. It does not make much sense to butcher a steer that I can get top dollar for when I have a lower dollar steer that will taste just as well.

more than clear, the best tasting and most tender meat is what my Family and I deserve at our table.
We produce it, so we pick the best for us.
 

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