Temperament Does Not Affect Steer Weight Gains on Extensively Managed Semiarid Rangeland

Reeves, Justin L.
Derner, Justin D.
Society for Range Management
Publication Year: 
On the Ground• Cattle with poor temperaments gain less weight infeedlots. However, how yearling steer temperamentaffects weight gain on rangelands is a knowledgegap for ranchers.• Flight speed, the speed at which cattle exit a chuteafter weighing, has been used to measure temperamentin past feedlot studies (faster speed = poortemperament). We used flight speed scores in thisstudy to measure yearling steer temperament at thebeginning (mid-May) and end (early-October) ofgrazing seasons for 3 years: 2011–2013.• We hypothesized that steer weight gains onextensively managed semiarid rangeland with lowstocking densities (~0.11–0.15 steers/ha) wouldnot be influenced by temperament due to the muchlower animal densities and fewer handling eventsthan experienced in feedlots.• No meaningful relationships were found betweenseason-beginning or season-ending flight speedscore and steer average daily gain, and flight speedscores were often lower at the end of the season.• Results suggest that ranchers operating stockerenterprises with extensive management and lowstocking densities on rangelands can potentially beless selective for temperamentwhen assembling herds.Keywords: cattle, flight speed, behavior, shortgrasssteppe.
Document Type: 
Journal Issue/Article
Society for Range Management

Rangelands, a publication of the Society for Range Management, serves as a forum for the presentation and discussion of facts, ideas, and philosophies pertaining to the study, management, and use of rangelands. The journal features scientific and historical articles as well as Society news. It provides readers with scientifically accurate information in a user-friendly format, placed in context of the world we live in today. Rangelands is a practical (non-technical) counterpart of Rangeland Ecology & Management (formerly the Journal of Range Management). The Global Rangelands collection includes articles from Rangelands up to 3 years from the current year. Access to more recent content is available by subscription from BioOne and the Society for Range Management and may also be available at your local university library. 
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