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© 1980, The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska on behalf of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension. All rights reserved.


This NebGuide discusses the proper selection, nutrition, breeding, and management of replacement beef heifers from weaning to breeding. Proper selection and development of replacement heifers is one of the most important management programs in beef production. Replacement heifers should be selected and managed so they will conceive and calve early in the calving season, provide adequate milk production, and rebreed and calve every 365 days. Heifers bred as yearlings to calve as two-year-olds will produce an extra calf in their lifetime compared to heifers calving as three-year-olds, without detrimental effects on mature size, milk production, or calf weaning weights. The type of management heifers receive from birth to breeding has a great influence on their lifetime calf production. Therefore, it is imperative that heifers be selected and developed properly for efficient and optimum production over eight to ten calf crops.