Finishing Beef Calves on Legume Pasture
"Low calf prices and high feed grain prices make fo rlow net profits. This area of South Dakota has many hay fields, few finishing feedlots and a large number of beef calves. Alfalfa forage can be raised adequately and cheaply, while raising feed grains is more difficult and more expensive."
Objectives: To determin if beef cows can be fattened profitably on legume pasture. To generate more income for the beef producer by retaining ownership longer. The coordinator will set up intensive rotational trials, chart weight gain and address potential problems of bloat, fencing requirements and amount of time required for care of animals.
Results: The project coordiantor received a one-year extension to gather additional data. Adverse weather hindered the project's progression; established alfalfa was killed by South Dakota winter storms. New seeding of alfalfa and clover was damaged by hailstorms and grazing was delayed until mid-July.