Date of Award
Master of Science
Eric W. Swanson
C. E. Wylie,
Milk is the most expensive ingredient of the calves’ radiation, yet it is believed that a certain amount of milk or milk solids is essential for normal growth of calves. Because of the expense of whole milk feeding, investigators have from time to time undertaken to raise calves on smaller amounts of milk than are generally recommended. In order to raise calves more economically, the usual recommendation is to feed calves lightly on milk and encourage them to consume other less expensive feeds at an early age to supplement the limited milk diet.
Milk replacements have been used quite successfully in raising calves for the past few years, but unfortunately very young calves do not have the proper rumen development to utilize large amounts of starchy or fibrous feeds, such as hay and grain, thus fairly large quantities of milk replacement and calf starter are needed for normal growth of the calves.
It has been postulated that the establishment of an adult-like flora as early as possible would increase the efficiency of roughage utilization enabling farmers to feed low-cost roughages and grains for part of the costly milk and calf starters.
It is believed that a wall-started calf should be able to shift to a non-milk diet quicker without loss of weight than a poorly-started calf. This study was conducted to determine whether more satisfactory calf raising can be accomplished by limited milk feeding for nine weeks or liberal milk feeding until the "normal" nine weeks weight is reached, and to further determine whether rumen inoculation is beneficial to calves raised under these conditions.
Williamson, James Hall, "A comparison of two methods of milk feeding, with and without rumen inoculation, upon the growth and feeding efficiency of dairy calves. " Master's Thesis, University of Tennessee, 1954.