Yet another finishing question

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willow bottom

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I'm planning on finishing steers on high quality grass and grain. My plan is to let them graze a high quality forage such as a legume/cereal grain mix, at the same time they would be fed a certain amount of grain (corn) each day as well. My question is since they have access to high quality forage at all times during the finishing process will they need such a balanced finishing ration?
 

Supa Dexta

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They'll walk a lot of it off. Takes time, but it can be done. No idea what you're calling a balanced ration, or what you have for animals but you still gotta pile grain to them to finish right. 'Grass finished'.. yeah no thanks.
 

Stocker Steve

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Pasture finishing has not been popular for at least 70 years. Not sure why you want to go there. Problem is that the feed conversion is lower than in a feedlot. Unbalanced ration will just make it worse. You need a niche market to have any chance of making it work financially.
 

sim.-ang.king

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Put on grass till about 900-1000ish pounds, then finish them on grain the last month to two months. Good way to cut some feed cost on the lighter weights, but still not lose those gains in the heavier weights.
 
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willow bottom

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Stocker Steve":2hqe6qyl said:
Pasture finishing has not been popular for at least 70 years. Not sure why you want to go there. Problem is that the feed conversion is lower than in a feedlot. Unbalanced ration will just make it worse. You need a niche market to have any chance of making it work financially.

I'd be direct selling beef. Customers want to see a happy cow on grass and not cramped up in a feedlot. That's my reasoning for wanting to have them always on grass.
 

M-5

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willow bottom":1n5i007s said:
Stocker Steve":1n5i007s said:
Pasture finishing has not been popular for at least 70 years. Not sure why you want to go there. Problem is that the feed conversion is lower than in a feedlot. Unbalanced ration will just make it worse. You need a niche market to have any chance of making it work financially.

I'd be direct selling beef. Customers want to see a happy cow on grass and not cramped up in a feedlot. That's my reasoning for wanting to have them always on grass.


whats your drought plan ??
 
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willow bottom

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M-5":jvzc99e7 said:
willow bottom":jvzc99e7 said:
Stocker Steve":jvzc99e7 said:
Pasture finishing has not been popular for at least 70 years. Not sure why you want to go there. Problem is that the feed conversion is lower than in a feedlot. Unbalanced ration will just make it worse. You need a niche market to have any chance of making it work financially.

I'd be direct selling beef. Customers want to see a happy cow on grass and not cramped up in a feedlot. That's my reasoning for wanting to have them always on grass.


whats your drought plan ??

I'm in Mississippi not the midwest. They'll be on the grass from Feb 1 till May sometime It wont be a drought in that time frame.
 

M-5

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willow bottom":10tzfaft said:
M-5":10tzfaft said:
willow bottom":10tzfaft said:
I'd be direct selling beef. Customers want to see a happy cow on grass and not cramped up in a feedlot. That's my reasoning for wanting to have them always on grass.


whats your drought plan ??

I'm in Mississippi not the midwest. They'll be on the grass from Feb 1 till May sometime It wont be a drought in that time frame.

We don't have a winter grass in the south unless its planted from a grain, Oats, Rye wheat , bahia will not start producing alot till mid april and even this year its slow . What "grass" do you have in mississippi ? If your in northern MS i might could see that fescue could be available
 
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willow bottom

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M-5":1x5ich23 said:
willow bottom":1x5ich23 said:
M-5":1x5ich23 said:
whats your drought plan ??

I'm in Mississippi not the midwest. They'll be on the grass from Feb 1 till May sometime It wont be a drought in that time frame.

We don't have a winter grass in the south unless its planted from a grain, Oats, Rye wheat , bahia will not start producing alot till mid april and even this year its slow . What "grass" do you have in mississippi ? If your in northern MS i might could see that fescue could be available

As I said in my first post it would be a high quality forage such as a cereal grain/legume mix That would be seeded in the fall.
 
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willow bottom

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M-5":3sb3953r said:
Maybe its a mississippi thing to call Cereal grain "Grass" Here it is what it is Oats , Rye, wheat , clover, etc! Good luck

Thank you sir for the vocabulary lesson on Grass.

My plan is to let them graze a high quality forage such as a legume/cereal grain mix, at the same time they would be fed a certain amount of grain (corn) each day as well.
 

shaz

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Stocker Steve":246pdclm said:
Pasture finishing has not been popular for at least 70 years. Not sure why you want to go there. Problem is that the feed conversion is lower than in a feedlot. Unbalanced ration will just make it worse. You need a niche market to have any chance of making it work financially.

Pasture finishing is what I've done the last 2 years mostly because the steer(s) I'm dealing with are usually in with a group of weaning calves or heifers. Basically I only want to hand feed one group, one ration. same amount. Far from perfect but I usually have a flashlight strapped to my head and need to minimize time.
 

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willow bottom":214sfjz3 said:
M-5":214sfjz3 said:
Maybe its a mississippi thing to call Cereal grain "Grass" Here it is what it is Oats , Rye, wheat , clover, etc! Good luck

Thank you sir for the vocabulary lesson on Grass.

My plan is to let them graze a high quality forage such as a legume/cereal grain mix, at the same time they would be fed a certain amount of grain (corn) each day as well.

your plan will work but don't count out weather conditions being a major factor . last year we didn't have any significant from oct to may and the only oats and rye that survived was under pivot irrigation .
 
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willow bottom

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M-5":3hihyagb said:
willow bottom":3hihyagb said:
M-5":3hihyagb said:
Maybe its a mississippi thing to call Cereal grain "Grass" Here it is what it is Oats , Rye, wheat , clover, etc! Good luck

Thank you sir for the vocabulary lesson on Grass.

My plan is to let them graze a high quality forage such as a legume/cereal grain mix, at the same time they would be fed a certain amount of grain (corn) each day as well.

your plan will work but don't count out weather conditions being a major factor . last year we didn't have any significant from oct to may and the only oats and rye that survived was under pivot irrigation .

Thanks. If there is a drought then i'll have plenty of good hay
 

ddd75

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i do it for the beef I eat.

i usually run them for about 26 months.. run them up to 8 - 900 on grass and then start feeding. This last one he's up to around 1000 lbs and I just started feeding him.. he's looking pretty good.
 

jdg

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Willow Bottom-

I've been grass finishing under pivot in south georgia for the past 7 years without grain. If you are an excellent manager, you can finish high quality beef in 20-24 months without grain, if you wean a really good calf with the right genetics. Don't underestimate how important genetics are for finishing with a high percentage of forages, if you want to hit choice or better.
Grain makes your job a lot easier because it gives you a consistent gain-maker without having to surf the vagaries of plant species and maturity. Grain will also even out the flavor profile, which is good for some consumers, and will make your product more consistent, but you would be surprised how good (and how much some are willing to pay) for a properly grass finished animal. I said properly, S.D. There's probably more bad grass finished beef in people's freezers than good.
Ryegrass should be your backbone for finishing in spring. Crimson, Vetch, and arrow leaf clover work well in the sward here. Spring oats work well in the fall. I usually mix them with a small amount of a high quality brassica, such as T-raptor or Forage collard, but brassicas are extremely wet and will squirt right through them if they dominate the sward. They also have a potential to create off flavors. My summer annual mix involves BMR Millet, sunn hemp, cowpea, and crabgrass, although i've just establish Alfalfa in the Tift 85 pastures and are hoping to get the gains from it to minimize the summer annuals.
When you supplement with grain, be mindful of the energy-protein ratios, and make sure your mineral program compliments the feed and forage. Our forages in the south are usually lacking in energy, but often have plenty of protein. (except the summer perennials post-spring)
Feel free to PM me with any specific questions...
 
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willow bottom

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jdg":2wihxvaa said:
Willow Bottom-

I've been grass finishing under pivot in south georgia for the past 7 years without grain. If you are an excellent manager, you can finish high quality beef in 20-24 months without grain, if you wean a really good calf with the right genetics. Don't underestimate how important genetics are for finishing with a high percentage of forages, if you want to hit choice or better.
Grain makes your job a lot easier because it gives you a consistent gain-maker without having to surf the vagaries of plant species and maturity. Grain will also even out the flavor profile, which is good for some consumers, and will make your product more consistent, but you would be surprised how good (and how much some are willing to pay) for a properly grass finished animal. I said properly, S.D. There's probably more bad grass finished beef in people's freezers than good.
Ryegrass should be your backbone for finishing in spring. Crimson, Vetch, and arrow leaf clover work well in the sward here. Spring oats work well in the fall. I usually mix them with a small amount of a high quality brassica, such as T-raptor or Forage collard, but brassicas are extremely wet and will squirt right through them if they dominate the sward. They also have a potential to create off flavors. My summer annual mix involves BMR Millet, sunn hemp, cowpea, and crabgrass, although i've just establish Alfalfa in the Tift 85 pastures and are hoping to get the gains from it to minimize the summer annuals.
When you supplement with grain, be mindful of the energy-protein ratios, and make sure your mineral program compliments the feed and forage. Our forages in the south are usually lacking in energy, but often have plenty of protein. (except the summer perennials post-spring)
Feel free to PM me with any specific questions...

That was very helpful, thanks!
 
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willow bottom

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Ferrisgeorge":308ljrkk said:
How are you marketing your grass fed cattle?

Pasture raised not grass fed. I'm going to sell cuts as a add on item in my csa boxes that i already sale
 

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