Animal Science, Department of


Date of this Version



Published in 2002 Nebraska Beef Cattle Report. Copyright © 2001 The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska.


A three-year study on heifer development of spring-born (n=240) and summer-born heifers (n=146) was conducted using sandhills ranch management. Spring-born heifers developed during the winter to reach 53% of mature weight at breeding had similar reproduction and calf production as heifers that reached 57% of mature weight. Feed costs were $22/heifer less for the lighter weight heifers. Summer-born heifers that were developed to reach 60% of mature weight at breeding in early fall had normal yearling pregnancy rates, but rebreeding rates of the 2-year-old cows were low, which caused high culling rates. Two-year-old cows calving in May produced greater calf growth rates to weaning than cows calving in June.