AgWatch


Entries Accepted Now For 40th Performance Tested Bull Sale

CARBONDALE, ILL.
   The SIU Beef Evaluation Station is now accepting entries for the 40th annual performance tested bull sale; applications are due September 9, 2016. The test period will be 84 days long, which is the minimum number of testing days in accordance to the Beef Improvement Federation. Bulls are tested together at the same location and on the same diet and in addition to determination of performance, breeding soundness exam are conducted and bulls are ultrasounded for carcass characteristics. The bulls will be indexed within breed and the index includes EPDs, performance, and carcass. The SIU Bull Test Station measures feed efficiency by using Calan gates to measure intake of each tested bull or heifer. Measuring feed intake then makes possible residual feed intake (RFI) calculation. RFI is a measure of metabolic efficiency and has an advantage over feed to gain value because it is not influenced by frame score or rate of gain. RFI would be a true measure of feed efficiency. Knowing the measured feed efficiency of an animal gives more direct information about the animal than genetic predictors.
   Last year’s inaugural heifer sale was a success and the SIU Bull Test Committee hopes to build upon the momentum by again offering high quality bred heifers for sale after the bulls are sold. The Committee is seeking nominations of commercial and registered heifers. This year Dr. Teresa Steckler (U of I Extension) will organize and supervise the bred heifer program. For more information on bull and heifer consignment please visit: bulltest.siu.edu . ∆
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