Compensatory gain in performance and economic efficiency of Nellore steers under different feeding regimes

The effect of compensatory growth on performance and economical efficiency of steers on different dietary supplementation strategies in the rearing and fattening stages was evaluated. Fifty-four calves with average initial weight of 169.6±16.7kg were divided into eight treatments, each of them being a strategy of food supplementation. During the dry season the animals received protein - energy - mineral supplement (SP) with an average daily intake of 0.1 or 0.2 % of body weight (BW). During the rainy season the animals received SP with an average daily intake of 0.5 % of body weight or mineral supplementation (SM). In the fattening period, the animals received SP with an average daily intake of 1.4 % of body weight or were placed in feedlot. Animals that received SM had no compensatory gain. Animals that received SP during the rainy season (0,51±0,07kg/day) had compensatory growth when compared to the previous period, and obtained additional daily gain of 123g when compared to SM group (0,39±0,07kg/day), however did not obtain compensatory gain during the fattening phase. The effect of compensatory gain becomes minimal or zero in feedlot finished. Supplementation strategies with protein, energy and mineral intake in the first dried and the first water in steer's life can be compensated with the use of these animals in the feedlot finishing phase with positive economic results.

beef cattle; feedlot; pasture; profitability; supplementation

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