Animal Science Department


Date of this Version



Published in J. Anim. Sci. 1999. 77:2832–2836. Copyright © 1999 American Society of Animal Science. Used by permission.


Yearling crossbred steers (n = 60; 386 kg) were individually fed in a completely randomized experimental design to determine their P requirement. Treatments were in a factorial arrangement with two levels of Ca (.35 or .70% of DM) and five concentrations of P (.14, .19, .24, .29, or .34% of DM). The finishing diet consisted of 34.5% dry-rolled corn, 22.5% brewers grits, 22.5% corn bran, 7.5% ground corncobs, 5% molasses, 3% fat, and 5% supplement. Supplemental P was provided as monosodium phosphate and Ca as limestone. Ash content was determined on the first phalanx bone from the lower front legs following slaughter, and rib bone breaking strength was determined with an Instron Universal Testing Machine. Carcass maturity and shear force were also evaluated on wholesale rib cuts. Because no interactions between Ca and P levels were detected, only main effects are presented. Daily gain, DMI, and feed efficiency were not affected by dietary P concentration or P intake. Bone ash (g or g/ 100 kg BW) and rib bone breaking strength were also unaffected by dietary P. Feeding .7% Ca decreased (P < &#;.06) ADG and efficiency compared with feeding .35% Ca. Neither dietary Ca nor P had a significant effect on tenderness (shear force), skeletal maturity, or overall maturity. These results indicate that the P requirement for finishing yearlings is .14% of diet DM or less and that supplementing P above levels supplied by basal ingredients in many grain-based finishing diets is not necessary.