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Weighing your beef cattle

Weighing your beef cattle

Cattle across the country are out grazing now since the spring and gaining sufficient levels of liveweight gain. Do you know your cattle weights? Here, Niall Kerins, Teagasc Advisor, Kilrush, Co. Clare lists the benefits that weighing your cattle can bring to you on your farm.

Young beef animals can on average gain 1 kg liveweight per day when managed accordingly on a grass diet alone.

However, as beef farmers it is important that cattle get weighed regularly to access their performance. Recent weighing data allows to make accurate decisions and monitor animal efficiency as they thrive.

What benefits can weighing bring to you on your farm?

Animal Health

Underlying health issues can often be picked up from regular weighing of livestock. Animals underperforming can be picked up through weighing data, often before the issue can become more visible. Many farms operate of dosing programme based on faecal egg sampling. Doses are administered based on liveweight, accurate weights of livestock leads to correct administration of these products.

Monitor livestock performance 

Regularly weighing livestock indicates if cattle are achieving their daily liveweight gains or otherwise. Should animals be failing to hit their desired liveweight targets it can offer the opportunity for farmers to change animal’s nutrition or indicate if other interventions are required.

Forecast time for sale of livestock

On beef farms there are several different systems in operation. These include weanling systems, finishing systems, calf-to-beef and the list is endless. However, every system needs to have a target liveweight for cattle to achieve while on the farm. Weighing cattle helps make informed decisions on farms when livestock hit their desired weight for sale.

Remember: You cannot manage what you don’t measure. This means on beef farms, weighing cattle offers you excellent information on your herd performance and allows you to make informed decisions on your business.

Do not delay and weigh today!

Further reading

You might also like to read:

The Teagasc Beef Specialists issue an article on a topic of interest to Suckler and Beef farmers every Wednesday here on Teagasc Daily. Teagasc advisors are regular contributors of articles to Teagasc Daily. Find your local Teagasc office here