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CALF SURVIVAL AND PREWEANING GROWTH IN DIVERGENT BEEF BREEDS AND CROSSES 1

CALF SURVIVAL AND PREWEANING GROWTH IN DIVERGENT BEEF BREEDS AND CROSSES 1,Curtiss M. Bailey

CALF SURVIVAL AND PREWEANING GROWTH IN DIVERGENT BEEF BREEDS AND CROSSES 1   (Citations: 10)
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Summary Calf production traits of divergent breed types, including Bos taurus and Bos indicus  Bos taurus crosses (n = 755 matings), were evaluated under pasture conditions. Mating groups were straightbred Hereford and Red Poll, Hereford  Red Poll reciprocal crosses, Angus  Hereford, Angus  Charolais-Cross, Brahman x Hereford and Brahman  Angus. Overall, 81% of the females that were ex- posed to bulls weaned a calf. Survival of Brah- man  Hereford calves, which averaged 94%, was lower (P<.05) than that for Angus x Herefords. Weaning rates for Hereford cows bred to Hereford, Red Poll and Angus sires were approximately 11% higher (P<.10) than those for Brahman x Hereford matings. Brahman x Hereford calves were younger (P<.01) at weaning than straightbred Herefords, Red Poll  Herefords and Angus  Herefords, but weighed more at weaning on an equivalent-age basis. Hereford cows weaned 12% more (P<.05) calves than Red Poll cows bred to the same Hereford sires. Red Poll, Angus and Charolais- Cross dams weaned heavier (P<.01)calves than did Hereford dams. Least-squares means for kilograms of actual weaning weight of calf per dam exposed to breeding ranged from 154 for Angus x Charolais-Cross to 117 for Brahman  Hereford matings. In a diallel analysis of calf weights, Herefords surpassed Red Polls in transmitted effects but Red Polls were superior (P<.01) in maternal influence. Heterosis effects on calf survival and percentage of calves weaned for Hereford  Red Poll matings were nonsigni-
Published in 2010.
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