Calve heifers in the daytime - really!

Several studies show if you feed cows at night, most will calve in the daylight hours.

Alan Newport, Editor, Beef Producer

January 5, 2017

1 Min Read
Calve heifers in the daytime - really!

When calving time for heifers arrives this spring (or winter), if you feed them in the evening they are dramatically more likely to calve in the daytime.

Glenn Selk, Oklahoma State University emeritus Extension animal scientist, has talked about this for years and says it works well.

It is called the Konefal method, because a Canadian rancher named Gus Konefal reported these observations in the 1970s.

Selk says the physiological mechanism for the phenomenon is unknown, but some hormonal effect may be involved. He says rumen motility studies indicate the frequency of rumen contractions falls a few hours before parturition. Intra-ruminal pressure begins to fall in the last two weeks of gestation, with a more rapid decline during calving. It has been suggested that night feeding causes intra-ruminal pressures to rise at night and decline in the daytime and that may help time the births in daylight.

To read the entire article, click here.

About the Author(s)

Alan Newport

Editor, Beef Producer

Alan Newport is editor of Beef Producer, a national magazine with editorial content specifically targeted at beef production for Farm Progress’s 17 state and regional farm publications. Beef Producer appears as an insert in these magazines for readers with 50 head or more of beef cattle. Newport lives in north-central Oklahoma and travels the U.S. to meet producers and to chase down the latest and best information about the beef industry.

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