Feedlot performance of various breed groups of cattle fed low to high levels of roughage

D. Norris, J. Macala, J. Makore, B. Mosimanyana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Beef production in Botswana relies mainly on the range using local and foreign breeds as either pure breeds or for crossbreeding. The foreign breeds and their crosses are large and do not usually finish well on the range. Supplementation has not been used extensively in Botswana due to high cost of imported feeds. This study investigated the use of locally available agricultural by-products for feedlot finishing of young crossbred males commonly used in Botswana. The low, medium and high roughage diets were balanced for crude protein and mineral content but differed in digestible energy. Animals fed the low and medium roughage diets had average daily gains above 1.0 kg per day, except for Brahman and Santa Gertrudis crosses which had daily gains of 0.8 kg per day when fed the low roughage diet. Crosses of South-Devon, Charolais, Santa Getrudis and pure Brahman fed the low roughage diet had cold dressed mass above 200 kg, whilst the Sussex crosses had cold dressed mass of 188 kg. Based on this information, it is recommended that for animals raised on the range, finishing off should be done using low roughage diets for all breeds. Medium roughage diets can be used but will result in lower gains. Further research is needed to evaluate the digestibility of diets by the animals and to carry out the economics of intensive fattening using locally available feed resources.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)78-85
Number of pages8
JournalLivestock Research for Rural Development
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Animal Science and Zoology


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