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Schmidt: Dakota Feeder Show calves are on feed

By Staff | Oct 24, 2014

Editor’s note: Information for this article and the photo were submitted to Schmidt by Karl Hoppe, NDSU Extension CREC Livestock Systems Specialist.

Turtle Lake hosted the 16th annual Dakota Feeder Calf Show on Oct. 18. I had the privilege of joining two of my Extension colleagues – Karl Hoppe, CREC Livestock Systems Specialist; and Mary Berg, CREC Livestock Environmental Management Specialist – in judging the pens of consigned cattle.

Cattle producers from across the state consigned 154 head of weaned steer calves. These calves were exhibited at the Turtle Lake weighing station and then shipped to the NDSU Carrington Research Extension Center feedlot for feeding until finish.

Forty-five producers and businesses will learn individual feedlot gain and carcass characteristics including ribeye area, backfat, marbling (prime, choice or select) and yield grade. Overall feed conversions and costs will be calculated.

Last year’s feed cost per pound of gain was $0.574 while overall cost of gain was $0.828 per pound. This year the feed-only cost is estimated at $0.42.

In the 2013-14 Dakota Feeder Calf Show the top profit five ‘pens-of-3’ steer groups averaged 3.85 pounds per day weight gain. The average of all pens was 3.62 pounds daily gain. The difference in profit between the high group and the average was $75 per head. The difference between the average and the low-profit group was $74.

This project provides producers with knowledge about calf genetic performance from their cow herd, provides experience in custom cattle feeding and celebrates the cattle industry in central North Dakota.

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