May 24, 2010 · Forages (Roughages) and Pasture-Feeding. Many young cattle are finished in feedlots on grain to save time and total feed. If grain-feeding can take an animal to slaughter readiness before going through another winter (on hay), it can be cheaper. But pasture is the most abundant and cheapest feed for other cattle.
Forage (pasture, silage, hay) is the most natural feed for cattle. Ruminants do very well on forage but don’t grow quite as fast or get fat as quickly as when they are fed grain. Many young cattle are finished in feedlots on grain to save time and total feed.
Under profitable systems of management, a mature beef cow should maintain her weight from fall to fall. Lactation requires more nutrients than gestation. However, feeding beef cows more than is necessary for satisfactory production, such as is frequently done in .
“Practical feeding levels are probably more like 2 to 3 pounds per head per day. At this low rate of supplementation, soybeans provide an excellent source of protein and energy.” Spring Valley Family Farms cattle graze on pasture for the first 10 to 12 months of life, and then for three to four months their diet is supplemented with hand-feeding of a mix of corn, soybean meal and cottonseed.