Date of this Version
2019 Nebraska Beef Cattle Report
May-born steers were backgrounded to achieve either a high or low rate of gain. The high rate of gain was achieved by offering steers meadow hay ad libitum and 4 lb/d of a 33% CP (DM) supplement, while the low rate of gain consisted of steers grazing meadow and offered 1 lb/d of the same supplement. After backgrounding, one-half of the steers from each group entered the feedlot in May as short-yearlings, while the remainder grazed upland range until entering the feedlot as long-yearlings in mid-September. Hot carcass weight was greater for steers backgrounded to achieve a high rate of gain, but they also consumed more during the feedlot phase and had fewer carcasses grade USDA average Choice or greater compared with steers backgrounded to achieve a low rate of gain. Long-yearling steers had increased marbling scores and percentage of carcasses grading USDA average Choice or greater compared with short-yearling steers. Furthermore, long-yearlings had increased carcass weight and risk for overweight carcasses.