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Posts for March 2019

On Feed - March 22, 2019

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The New Herd Bull

Sale season is here and in full swing and if you haven’t purchased your next herd bull already, you may still be planning on it.  So after you write the check and load him up, there are things you can do to make sure that your new bull lives up to your expectations and his genetic potential.

Most of the bulls sold are just yearlings.  They are far from done growing and we need to remember that when we haul him home and put him in back 40 until we are done calving.  These bulls need to be maintained on a high level of nutrition, including protein, energy, vitamins and minerals in order for him to be a successful breeder in a couple of months.  Protein required for young bulls will vary but around 10-13% protein would be necessary to keep him growing, putting on muscle, and priming the immune system.  Energy required is going to be the most variable nutrient.  If we get the bulls overly fat, then the fat in scrotum can negatively impact semen quality.  However, if the bulls are underfed, they don’t grow properly and won’t have the body condition necessary to make it through the breeding season as an active breeder or be able to cover all of the cows you expect he should.  Bulls could lose 100-200 lbs during the breeding season, so  we want those bulls to be in AT LEAST a BCS 5 prior to turn out.

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