Smaller farms often lack the control over feeding and weighing that commercial feedlots possess. The objectives of this study were to evaluate the effect of oscillating feeding time and oscillating diet formulation on growth performance and carcass characteristics in feedlot cattle fed dry, whole shelled corn–based diets. A total of 168 steers were blocked by initial BW (280 ± 8.7 kg) and allotted to 24 pens. Pens were assigned to 1 of 3 treatments: (1) control, fed the same diet and at the same time each day; (2) oscillating feeding time, fed the same diet as control fed 1 h earlier on odd days and 1 h later on even days of the experiment; and (3) oscillating diet formulation, fed the diet at the same time every day but with diet formulation changed daily (10% distillers dried grains with solubles was added on the even days and 10% removed on the odd days). Animal performance (BW, DMI, and G:F) was measured over 166 to 174 d. At the end of the experiment, steers were weighed and slaughtered, and carcass characteristics were evaluated. Data were statistically analyzed (PROC Mixed, SAS) using treatment as a fixed variable and pen and block as random variables. There was no treatment effect (P > 0.05) for any variable. In conclusion, small daily diet formulation or feed delivery timing variations did not affect performance and carcass characteristics when whole shelled corn was fed to feedlot cattle.
Key words: bunk management, mixing variability, oscillating feeding time.
Abstract published in The Professional Animal Scientist 33:160–165 https://doi.org/10.15232/pas.2016-01565.