May get hammered for this, but it is what it is. Years ago when I ran registered. Charolais, it was an easy average for heifer calves to wean off at over 700 and bulls to average around 800 at 7-8 months. Sometimes creep fed and sometimes not. One year that specifically remember with some creep feed all bulls weighed from 825 - 900.
Still had decent weights when initially using Angus or Hereford bulls over the registered Charolais cows.
After that with a complete different herd of cows no Charolais genetics, basically Angus and or Hereford, we don’t come close to those weaning weights, and that is including AI calves by AI sired cows from some of the high growth animals of the day. No longer have scales so calves are weighed when sold.
For instance this years calves were weaned for around 6 weeks and sold about an average of 8 months. The largest steer calves averaged 590. That was with no creep and minimal feed after weaning. Those calves were by our home raised bulls but also very comparable with AI sired calves from a few years ago.
. The Charolais weighed much more but were also much larger at birth. They were also from heavy milking cows from 30 years ago and calves were by mainly bulls coming on the heels of the frame race.
Would be interesting to see how Charolais of today compare.
I believe genetics only goes so far. If the environmental/nutritional conditions are stacked favorably then some advantages can be achieved but at what cost of production. A lot of factors come into play.
Are you able to run more cows per acre now vs. your old charolais herd?
Did your charolais herd require more supplemental feed than now to maintain?
I'm confident that today you would see a 20-30 cent dock in char calves so we won't even got there. Don't know about 30 years past.
Other factors I'm not thinking of?
I find this interesting. The biggest names in AAA are WW chasers. A sale catalog I received recently had many high 9 weight and even 1000+ WW bulls. I understand, they sell stock for prices way above what commercial calves bring, but as KYH said, many factors come into play.
I find myself torn between low cost production and running small numbers due to limited availability of pasture and increasing herd size with more produced feed and more overhead. Low cost has always won so far, due to return on investment, but it is the most limiting factor of expansion. Low cost has the best exit strategy by far, in worst case scenarios. Any type of farming/ranching is geared towards get big or get out and economies of scale, however, so small production has its disadvantages too. Not looking for a silver bullet here, just trying to keep a good discussion going and get some valuable input.