Date of Award
Master of Science
Emmit L. Rawls, John R. Brooker
The identification of relationships between feeder calf characteristics and important feedlot and carcass characteristics would improve the efficiency of the marketing link between commercial cow-calf producers and stocker and feedlot operators. The feeder calf characteristics examined in this study were initial weight and fat thickness, breed, and subjective frame size and muscle thickness. A bioeconomic simulation model was utilized to examine the individual effects of those observable feeder calf characteristics on the length of the feeding process, final live weight and fat thickness, carcass yield grade and marbling score, feed cost, profitability of the feeding process, and derived value of the feeder animal.
The bioeconomic simulation model was used to represent 78A animals individually during the feedlot finishing process. The set of mathematical equations included in the model described the individual purchase, feeding, growth and selling process for the Angus, Hereford, Charolais-cross, and Angus-Hereford-cross animals in the study. Regression analysis was utilized to generate coefficients for growth and development of the animal in terms of weight, fat thickness, feed consumption, yield and quality grades, and salable carcass weight.
The analysis included separate results for maximizing net revenue to the animal and to the feedlot facility for differing cost-price scenarios. Net returns to the animal and to the feedlot facility were calculated every five days (from 100 to 3A0) on feed and the optimum selling point was determined. An individual animal's important feedlot and carcass characteristics utilized in this study correspond to the animal's optimum selling point.
In order to examine the relationships between individual feeder calf and important feedlot and carcass characteristics, each feedlot and carcass characteristic was regressed on the set of feeder calf characteristics while accounting for the animal's diet. Separate regressions were analyzed when maximizing net returns to the animal and to the feedlot facility for each cost-price condition.
The general findings of this study indicated that initial weight was negatively related to days on feed, marbling score, and feed cost and positively related to final live weight. Initial fat thickness was negatively related to days on feed, final live weight, net returns from feeding, feed cost, and derived feeder animal value while initial fat thickness was positively related to final fat thickness and yield grade.
As for breed effects, the general findings indicated that Angus was negatively related to final live weight, net returns from feeding, and derived feeder value. Charolais-cross was negatively related to final fat thickness and yield grade and positively related to days on feed. The results indicated that Angus-Hereford-cross was positively related to net returns from feeding and derived feeder value.
Subjective frame size was negatively related to net returns from feeding and positively related to days on feed, final live weight, feed cost, and derived feeder value. Also, the results indicated that subjective muscle thickness was negatively related to net returns from the feeding process.
Ferguson, Kevin W., "An economic analysis of the effects of feeder calf characteristics on important feedlot and carcass characteristics. " Master's Thesis, University of Tennessee, 1986.