Enhancing Beef-on-Dairy Calves' Marketability

Recent cattle genetics breeding initiatives have made many ranches more creative. The major benefits of using beef on dairy are managing replacement numbers and increasing the market value of calves. 

 A Wisconsin research indicated that 65% of farmers sell their dairy beef crosses within a week of birth, while 12.5% complete them. There are ways to make beef cross calves more marketable at any time.

Don't Miss Calf Care Day One The calves should be handled like other replacement animals even if they're leaving the farm. Vaccinate, feed high-quality colostrum, and dip navels with 7% iodine.

Colostrum quality requires 50 IgG or more. Some producers worry about utilizing high-quality colostrum on calves that may depart. 

 Many farms have succeeded in stocking colostrum by preserving 50–70 lgG for market calves and more for replacement heifers. As with replacement heifers, provide colostrum within two hours of delivery.

Monitor Calf Growth Marketing weaned calves? Track average daily gain. By 8 weeks, calves should gain 1.5 lbs per day or double their birth weight. 

Weekly weigh tape or portable scale tracking will assist assess if these targets are accomplished. Calves' weights can also assist decide vaccination times. 

Give respiratory vaccines between 400 and 500 pounds. Vaccinate at least two weeks before leaving the farm. Health data are crucial when selling calves privately or contractually. 

 Buyers desire well-cared-for calves of any age. Maintain and deliver immunization and processing records. Calf value decreases with navel infections and respiratory illness. 

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