Department of Animal Science


Date of this Version



Published in 2009 Nebraska Beef Cattle Report (Lincoln, NE: December, 2008). Copyright © 2008 The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska.


Three experiments compared heifer development in the dry lot, grazing either dormant winter range or corn crop residue. Grazing corn residue may reduce pre-breeding gain and in doing so increase age at puberty. Compared to dry lot development, grazing corn residue reduced AI pregnancy rate, but final pregnancy rate was similar for both development tsystems. Calf production and rebreeding efficiency were not affected by the development system. However, grazing corn residue during heifer development reduced cost compared to development in the dry lot. Developing heifers by grazing dormant forage does not affect final pregnancy rate and reduces cost, improving the sustainability of beef production.