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David Sparks Ph.d Implanted Calves
by David Sparks Ph.d, click here for bio

Program: Idaho Ag Today
Date: March 20, 2019

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Two recent studies clear up these misconceptions, according to Gary Sides, PhD, managing nutritionist with Zoetis, and Tom Short, PhD, associate director in Outcomes Research with Zoetis. Myth No. 1: Nonimplanted calves bring more profit on sale day than implanted calves.

Busting Myth No. 1: Implanted cattle actually bring slightly more dollars per pound on sale day. Based on video auction market sales data from 2014-2017, the data revealed nearly equal prices for implanted and nonimplanted cattle.1 It also showed no statistical difference in sale price between implanted and nonimplanted cattle throughout the four years recorded. In fact, implanted lots of cattle sold for slightly more, numerically, than nonimplanted lots — 184.12 versus 183.03 $/cwt.

Myth No. 2: Nonimplanted calves outperform implanted calves in the feedyard.

Busting Myth No. 2: A South Dakota State University study reported implanted calves outperform nonimplanted calves in the feedyard.2 In the report, implanted steers were compared with nonimplanted steers from weaning through harvest. The findings revealed hot carcass weights were 8 pounds heavier for implanted calves versus those not implanted.2


“The nonimplanted calves never caught up in the feedyard,” Dr. Sides said. “This is an amazing use of technology, as well as a little management that can help feedlot managers make the most gain and profit possible.”


Cattlemen can optimize implant results and profit for every dollar invested in their implanting program by working with processing crews to implement best-practice implanting techniques.

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