Should You Creep Feed Your Calves This Summer?

Creep feeding must be carefully appraised in view of economics of cost of gain, potential market, and the influence on sale price of the calves. ( Wyatt Bechtel )

Things to consider when creep feeding are:

  • Cost of the creep feed
  • Efficiency of utilization of the creep feed
  • Difference in price due to increased weight of the calves
  • Pasture conditions

A three year study was conducted at the Gudmundsen Sandhills Ag Lab starting with 120 crossbred (5/8 Red Angus, 3/8 Simmental) March-calving cows and were divided by body weight within age group. 

Treatments were creep feed with a limiter versus no creep feed. The non-creep treatment occupied one pasture while the creep treatment occupied 2 separate pastures. 

Creep-fed calves were introduced into the pasture containing creep feeders surrounded by panels with openings sufficient to admit calves but prevent cow entry (8 openings, ~15 inches wide). 

Cow Body Weight (BW) and Body Condition Score (BCS) were measured at calving, prebreeding, and weaning. Calf body weight (Calf BW) was measured at birth, prebreeding, and weaning. Results of the creep feeding and its effect on the cows and calves are in Table 1 (

Results from this study demonstrate that creep feeding calves increased (P < 0.01) calf body weight at weaning by 44 lbs over non-creep fed calves. Average intake of creep feed that disappeared from feeder was approximately 4.44 lbs (as fed basis) per calf per day, resulting in an increased cost of $64.80 due to creep feeding. At the time of weaning of this study in Nebraska (December 4, 2017), average steer price for 507 lbs steers were worth $209.75/cwt vs. 551 lbs. steers at $202.5/cwt. Due to the increased weaning weights and without considering costs, creep feeding resulted in an increase of $52.36 per calf in added value more than the non-creep fed calves. Selling weaned calves at this point in time, the increased calf weight due to creep feeding did not cover the expense of the creep feed. 

Creep feeding calves did not influence (P > 0.06) yield Grade, ribeye (longissimus) muscle area, or marbling score after a feedlot finishing period. However, steer finishing live weight, hot carcass weight, and 12th rib fat thickness were increased (P < 0.04) by pre-weaning creep feeding. Additional value of added weight for the steers at slaughter was $63.80 based on hot carcass weight. 

Under the conditions of this study, creep feeding calves prior to weaning was not a cost effective strategy to increase weaning weight of calves. Therefore, when considering creep feeding this summer you may want to look at the projected price of the calves and the cost of the feed before making the decision to creep feed. In addition, the cost of the feed calculated in this study does not include labor cost to deliver feed to the creep feeders.

Under severe drought conditions, creep feeding can be used to offset declining forage quality and quantity due to replacing some forage consumption. However, creep feeding will not replace or decrease the calf’s milk intake. Thus, creep feeding calves in drought conditions does not result in lowered nutrient requirements for the dam and may exacerbate the loss of forage due to drought on the cowherd. 

Another concern with creep feeding is the long-term impacts on creep-fed heifer calves. The increased rate of gain from creep feeding in heifers can cause over-development of the udder or fatty udders, resulting in lowered lifetime milk production of replacements going into the cowherd. In a long-term study conducted at Purdue University, cows that were creep-fed as heifers weaned less pounds of calf during their lifetime production. 

Creep feeding must be carefully appraised in view of economics of cost of gain, potential market, and the influence on sale price of the calves. For more information on this topic NebGuide G2077 “Creep Feeding Beef Calves” ( is a good source of information. The information from this study can be found on page 18 of the “2018 Nebraska Beef Cattle Report” titled “Effects of Gestation Supplementation, Synchronization and Creep Feeding in a Spring Calving Beef Herd in the Nebraska Sandhills” (


Restricted HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <h2 id> <h3 id> <h4 id> <h5 id> <h6 id>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
3 + 7 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.
Submitted by Anda on Sat, 06/09/2018 - 07:24

Love this blog. abc stuff ..

Submitted by Amara carr on Sat, 06/09/2018 - 18:31

My name is Amara Carr from USA, I want to testify to the entire world of how I got cured by Dr. Sam healing spell from HIV AIDS. I have been living with this deadly disease for the past 4 years, I have done all I can to cure this disease but all my efforts proved abortive until I met an old friend of mine Fiona. who told me about a spell caster who cast spells to healed her younger sister from HIV. Although I never believed in spells, I decided to give it a try. when I contacted this spell caster, he helped me cast a healing spell, low and behold when I went for a checkup; the doctor diagnoses that,i am HIV negative. So friends my advise is if you have such sickness or any other at all, you can contact him. ( Wbesite:

Email: Whats-App number +2347087462033

Submitted by Food on Sun, 06/10/2018 - 04:12

This is my first time i visit here. I found so many entertaining stuff in your blog, especially its discussion. From the tons of comments on your articles, I guess I am not the only one having all the leisure here! Keep up the good work. I have been meaning to write something like this on my website and you have given me an idea. Food

Submitted by DORA JUDY on Mon, 06/18/2018 - 20:29

My Name is Dora Judy i want to tell you all my life story about A Spell Caster Who help me to get pregnant, So me and my husband have been trying to get a baby for the last 10 years now and we have had no luck. I don't have a regular cycle so it is hard for me to tell when I'm ovulating or not, but we always have sex at least 3 times a week, sometimes more. I know it can take up to a year to conceive but everyone i know who have had a baby have conceived within 2-3months of trying and it is really hurting to me. my husband had a fertility test about a year ago and his sperm were fine. I'm thinking it could be a problem with me but I've never had any symptoms of any problems. My husband does smoke and have the occasional Priest ink, and i used to smoke and also have the occasional Priest ink. i know i'm slightly overweight but that shouldn't affect our chances too much, one faithful day my friend told me about Dr Sam and told me to contact this spell caster that help her aunty, then i contact the man on this email:, after three months the doctor confirm that i am pregnant thank you Dr Sam for helping me get a baby, I am thankful for all he has done. contact him via email: { Or} whatsapp him on +2347087462033 and he will also save your marriage or your relationship problems.

You can read more about him on his website and contact him:
Name: Dora Judy
Country: USA

Submitted by Finance Homework Help | on Wed, 06/20/2018 - 02:06

Things are very open and intensely clear explanation of issues. was truly information. Your website is very beneficial. Finance Homework Help |

Submitted by Statistics Homework Help on Wed, 06/20/2018 - 02:07

I’m really impressed with your article, such great & usefull knowledge you mentioned here Statistics Homework Help

Submitted by Nursing Assignment Help on Wed, 06/20/2018 - 02:08

Pretty helpful material, much thanks for this article Nursing Assignment Help

Submitted by Homework Help on Wed, 06/20/2018 - 02:08

The leading assignment help UK firm offers state of the art services to its clients with a promise of delivering all the required work well within the deadline. Homework Help