Using BoVantage to Successfully Combat Heat Stress

Randy Rosenboom, Field Specialist – Beef

We have talked on numerous occasions about using BoVantage® (BVT) to stimulate intake in new cattle and as a combination product with Optaflexx® for finishing cattle. The data I am presenting here are a bit of a review, but since NOW is the time to talk about heat stress, it is a good refresher to share again.

The first table was a trial done in NW Iowa during the hot summer of 2012 at a customer who feeds several thousand head of cattle at their facility. There were about 1300 total head of Black X cattle split into 6 pens with 3 pens receiving BVT and three control pens.

As you can see, the BVT cattle ate a little more than 1.5 lb more daily dry matter feed. This resulted in about .27-lb more ADG. The economics are about 17¢ for the BVT and an additional 12¢ or so for the extra feed. So at $150 fat cattle, they were still 10¢ per head per day better than the controls.

TABLE 1: NW IOWA FEEDLOT BOVANTAGE HEAT STRESS

The second table represents a field study done in Central Minnesota with PDB customer. There were 121 single-source cattle that were simply split into two pens. They weighed around 800 lb or so during this study. One pen received Hydro-Lac, a popular competitive product that is fed to reduce shipping shrink on fat cattle. Hydro-Lac also claims to help reduce heat stress and its negative effect on feed intake. Since many of our producers use this competitive product, we wanted to see how BVT stacked up during a period of heat stress. There was no attempt to compare either product’s effect on shipping shrink. As you can see from the data, BVT-fed cattle actually had higher DMI than the Hydro-Lac. This was not an attempt to necessarily outperform Hydro-Lac, but rather to discover if BVT had just as good an impact on feed intake during heat stress as does Hydro-Lac. I think it is safe to say that in this study it did at least that and at approximately 40% of the cost.

TABLE 2: BOVANTAGE vs HYDRO-LAC FOR HEAT STRESS