Calf management strategies involving pasture weaning coupled with maternal contact (i.e., fence-line weaning) have been recommended as possible best-management practices for minimizing weaning stress and reducing subsequent feedlot morbidity compared with drylot weaning. Recently a study was done to evaluate the effect of fence-line or drylot weaning on the health and performance of beef calves during weaning, receiving, and finishing.
At weaning, calves (average weaning age of 180 days) were assigned one of three weaning methods:
- drylot weaning + complete visual and auditory separation from dams
- pasture weaning + fence-line contact with dams
- pasture weaning + fence-line contact with dams + supplemental feed delivered in a bunk.
All calves were individually weighed at the time of maternal separation and were given initial vaccinations against respiratory pathogens. In addition, all calves were treated for internal and external parasites. Booster vaccinations were administered 14 days later. At the end of the 28-day weaning period, all calves were shipped four hours to a feedlot.… Continue readingRead More »