Feedyard Analysis: Fewer cattle placed on feed

Feedyard Analysis: Fewer cattle placed on feed

*Dr. Marcus Hoelsher heads his own consulting firm at 1500 W. Park, Hereford, Texas.

WINTER feeding conditions slowed performance of feedyard cattle, with rain turning into ice and snow, which resulted in higher closeouts.

Compared to the previous month, daily gains were reduced, while feed conversions and costs of gain were higher.

Feedyards reported that steers were placed on feed with a purchased weight of 788 lb., marketed at 1,341 lb. and gained 3.71 lb. daily for the 149-day feeding period. The cost of gain ranged from $116 to $122/cwt. and averaged $118.58/cwt.

Heifers were placed at 725 lb., finished at 1,222 lb. and gained 3.29 lb. daily for 151 days. The cost of gain ranged from $119 to $126/cwt. and averaged $122.55/cwt.

Ration costs for January should range from $380 to $400 per ton on a dry basis with a ration markup. Grain prices have been generally lower than last month. However, roughage and other ingredient prices have been steady to higher.

Cattle feeders have reported losses of $140-160 per head with a $126 fed cattle market. One year ago, they reported losses of $5-10 per head with a $122 market.

Fewer cattle are being placed on feed at the present time. The U.S. Department of Agriculture cattle on feed report had placements at 94% of the previous year.

With increased feed cattle numbers, feedyard managers continued to do a good job in moving cattle from their showlists, most of which are current.

 

Feedyard performance, December 2012

 

-Steers-

-Heifers-

 

Dec. '12

Nov. '12

Dec. '11

Dec. '12

Nov. '12

Dec. '11

Weight in, lb.

788

774

781

725

709

729

Weight out, lb.

1,341

1,339

1,304

1,222

1,224

1,205

Days fed

149

150

152

151

152

151

Daily gain, lb.

3.71

3.77

3.44

3.29

3.39

3.15

Dry conversion, lb.

6.08

5.91

6.16

6.19

6.11

6.38

Death loss, %

1.13

1.16

1.30

1.39

1.56

1.32

Cost of gain, $/cwt.

118.58

112.46

111.38

122.55

116.31

115.54

Data are based on 25 feedlots in a four-state area serviced by several nutritional and veterinarian consulting groups.

 

Volume:85 Issue:03

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