A series of 4 herbage allowance trials was conducted over 2 years with beef cattle on a well-drained site in Northland. Two trials were conducted in autumn/winter (April-July) and 2 in spring (October and November). Analysis of the data, for each seasonal period combined over the 2 years, showed large differences in the relationships between daily live- weight gain and herbage allowance between the 2 seasons. At the same allowance, beef cattle grew faster in spring than in autumn/winter. Relationships between allowance and daily live-weight gain were: Autumn/winter: LWG = 0.48-1.37* 0.65 allowance Spring: LWG = 1.09-2.82* 0.45 allowance These differences were not associated with differences in in vitro digestibility (70 to 78% in all trials) or N concentrations. Allowances required for maintenance were lower in spring than in autumn/winter and potential growth rates in spring approximately double those in autumn.

DG, McCall, DC Smeaton, TK Wadams, and ML Gibbison

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 46, , 129-132, 1986
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