We weighed the fall bulls and heifers off test this week. The cattle had been in the testing facility for over 70 days so their test was over. Here Logan is recording the weight information. We weigh the cattle two days in a row and then average their weights for a more accurate off test weight.
During the 70 days on test, we collect how much each animal ate each day. Then, when the test is over, we compile all the information (how much they ate each day and how much they gained each day) and send that to Iowa State University where they calculate the Feed:Gain ratio, Residual Feed Intake (RFI), and Residual Average Daily Gain (RADG). It is the most interesting data! (To me, anyway. I guess some people might think it’s boring. Lol)
We also collect a back fat measurement via ultrasound when the cattle come off test. (The fat thickness is used in the RADG calculation.)
By this time, the cattle have been through the chute about 7 times so they know the system well. It’s really amazing how well they flow through.
The feed intake data is something I have grown very passionate about. When we first started studying it, I was quite overwhelmed and confused. But now I think it is some of the most important data we can collect. I could go on and on about it, but I won’t bore you with it. However, if you have any questions about it, don’t hesitate to ask!