With higher beef cattle prices expected this fall, livestock producers should add all the weaning weight possible to calves. Producers can increase calf weaning weight by properly using growth-promoting implants, rotational grazing and creep feeding and reducing calves' exposure to parasites.
By the time calves are three to four months old the majority of their nutrients should come from something other than their mother's milk. Rotation will keep pasture in front of the calf fresh and vegetative at all times. This will increase both pasture digestibility and calf rate of gain.
Another way to increase weaning weight is to creep feed by using concentrates to supply extra nutrition to calves. The most economical method is to creep feed for the short term, the last 45 days prior to weaning. This will stimulate growth almost as much as season-long creep feeding. The latter provides a low conversion of feed to additional gain for calves on grass-legume pastures.