Programmed Feeding of Protein to Finishing Beef Steers
Six-hundred pound Angus steer calves were fed cornbased finishing diets for 180 days to determine the effects of stepwise reduction of protein in the diet on performance and carcass characteristics. Reducing protein in the diet, but satisfying the requirements projected by the National Research Council model for Nutrient Requirements of Beef Cattle, did not affect performance or carcass measurements. Further reduction in protein content of the diet, so the projected requirement of the rumen microorganisms was not being met, did not affect performance or carcass measurements. It is concluded that quantity of protein fed to finishing cattle can be programmed and abstantially reduced. These reductions will result in substantially less nitrogen excreted in manure from larger feedlots.