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Keywords

grazing, stocker cattle, smooth bromegrass, energy, supplementation

Abstract

A total of 180 steers grazing smooth bromegrass pastures were used to evaluate the effects of supplemental energy source on available forage, grazing gains, subsequent finishing gains, and carcass characteristics in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018. Supple­mentation treatments evaluated were: no supplement, a supplement with starch as the primary source of energy, and a supplement with fat as the primary source of energy. Supplements were formulated to provide the same quantity of protein and energy per head daily. Supplementation with the starch-based or fat-based supplement during the grazing phase resulted in higher (P < 0.05) grazing gains than feeding no supplement during all five years. In 2014, 2016, 2017, and 2018, grazing gains of steers supple­mented with the starch-based or fat-based supplement were similar (P > 0.05). In 2015, steers supplemented with the fat-based supplement had greater (P < 0.05) grazing gains than those that received the starch-based supplement. In 2014, supplementation during the grazing phase had no effect (P > 0.05) on finishing gain, feed intake, and feed:gain. Steers supplemented with the starch-based supplement had greater (P < 0.05) final finishing live weight, and greater (P < 0.05) hot carcass weight than those that received no supplement. In 2015, steers fed the fat-based supplement had higher (P < 0.05) final finishing live weight, greater (P < 0.05) hot carcass weight, and lower (P < 0.05) finishing gain than those supplemented with the starch-based supplement or fed no supplement. In 2016, steers fed the starch-based or fat-based supplement had greater (P < 0.05) hot carcass weight and higher (P < 0.05) marbling scores than those fed no supplement. Supplementation had no effect (P > 0.05) on finishing gains. In 2017, steers fed the starch-based supplement had greater (P < 0.05) finishing gain and lower (P < 0.05) feed:gain than those fed no supplement, and steers that were supplemented while grazing had greater (P < 0.05) hot carcass weight than those that received no supplement.

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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