Maintain Weight Gained from Implanting When Retaining Ownership

November 4th, 2010 – Retaining ownership after weaning can help cow/calf producers get the most out of their investment in the right genetics, management and nutrition. To make the most of profit opportunities when retaining ownership, maximizing gain is always a fundamental consideration, and implants can help cattle gain weight and maintain this weight advantage all the way to market.
“Cattle will continue to respond to implants from the suckling calf stage through the backgrounder and feedlot,” says Gary Sides, Ph.D., nutritionist, Pfizer Animal Health. “When producers retain ownership, they get to take advantage of the additional feed efficiency and pounds implants can bring.”
If producers selected genetics for marbling ability, a well-designed implant program can help increase gain and feed efficiency and still feed them to a desired quality grade.  For instance, research has shown that calves implanted with an implant like SYNOVEX® C during the suckling period, or SYNOVEX S or H during yearling grazing programs, perform similarly in the feedlot1 while also having similar quality grade and tenderness.2,3
An important tip for optimizing the return on your implant investment is to keep a close eye on nutritional intake.  If forage nutrients start to tail off dramatically, supplementing the calves prior to shipping to the feedlot or sale barn will actually help the investment in implants and quality genetics go even further. 
“An implant is about a 20-1 return on the initial investment,” Dr. Sides says. “Whether implanting or not, producers aren’t going to see the quality grade or rate of gain they want if the nutrition isn’t there.”
“Performance while on pasture is the cheapest gain you can get. If I were retaining ownership, I would rather calves get the extra pounds put on while on pasture when the cost of gain is cheaper.  It’s just important to make sure the pasture is providing all the right nutrients,” Dr. Sides says. “With a solid implanting strategy, cattle will benefit from the added gain from the suckling calf stage to market. And, for producers retaining ownership, they really have the opportunity to see the resulting profit from start to finish.”
For more information, contact: 
Michelle Tollefson  
Pfizer Animal Health  

Jennifer Ryan
Bader Rutter
1Mader TL, Carryover and lifetime effects of growth-promoting implants. Proceedings Oklahoma State University Implant Symposium. Okla. Ag. Exp. Sta. 1997;88-94.
2Mader TL, Dahlquist JM, Sindt MH, Stock RA, Klopfenstein TJ. Impact of sequential implanting with SYNOVEX on steer and heifer performance. J Anim Sci 1994;72:1095.
3Platter WJ, Tatum JD, Belk KE, Engle TE, Scanga JA, Smith GC. Effects of repetitive use of growth-promoting implants on beef carcass quality and consumer ratings of beef palatability. Colorado State University Final Report to the Beef Quality Assurance Advisory Board, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. 2001.



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