Department of Animal Science


Date of this Version

January 2001


Published in Nebraska Beef Cattle Report 2001, published by Agricultural Research Division, University of Nebraska Cooperative Extension, and Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Nebraska–Lincoln.


Our objective was to determine if labor and purchased inputs could be reduced and profitability improved by matching lactation (i.e., calving date) with nutrient content of grazed forages to extend the grazing season in beef cow/calf systems. By adjusting a traditional March calving date to a nontraditional June calving date, nearly 2 tons of harvested feed/cow was replaced by grazing. Feeding and calving labor inputs of mature cows were 61% lower for the June calving compared to the March calving system. Weaning rates were comparable between March and June calving systems. Weaning weights for June-born calves were 70 lbs lighter than March-born calves.