Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Animal, Dairy, and Veterinary Sciences

Committee Chair(s)

John E. Butcher


John E. Butcher


James A. Bennett


Lynn H. Davis


A factorially designed experiment had 18 Hereford and 18 Holstein steers on individually fed, high-grain diets. One diet included 59% rolled barley, 30% CSF beet pulp, 5% protein, vitamin, mineral, and stilbestrol supplement, and 6% chopped hay and straw. The other diet had corn silage (11% air dry matter equivalent) substituted for the chopped roughage and 5% of the beet pulp. The Holsteins were heavier at the start, 752 lb. as compared to the Herefords 686 lb. average. The weight differential was maintained throughout the approximately 180-day trial. The Holstein's feed consumption and rate of gain, 23.4 and 2.71 lb. respectively, were significantly better than the hereford's 20.1 and 2.23 lb. The average feed conversion difference was not significant, with 8.68 for the Holsteins and 9.20 for the Herefords. There was no significant difference in carcass grade, although the Herefords tended to grade higher and had significantly better conformation scores. The Holsteins had less fat cover, .178 inches as compared to .497 inches, and a significantly higher cutability, with 52% for the Holsteins vs. 50% for the Herefords. Feed conversion was 8.57 for the cattle on the diet containing silage and 9.30 for those on the diet without silage (P<.05). This experiment's relatively low level of silage apparently improved palatability and minimized the wastage of "fines." The relatively large variations in all measures among individual animals were considered a significant observation.