Post weaning growth and carcass characteristics of chianina brahman and hereford cross and hereford steers in southern queensland australia

Strachan, R.T.; Peart, W.J.; Coleman, R.G.; O'rourke P.K.

Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture and Animal Husbandry 20(104): 261-264


Accession: 006153852

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The post-weaning growth of 281 Chianiana .times. Hereford (CC.HH), Chianina .times. (Brahman .times. Hereford) (CC.BH), Brahman .times. Hereford (BB.HH), Hereford .times. (Brahman .times. Hereford) (HH.BH) and Hereford (HH.HH) steers grazing improved brigalow (Acacia harpophylla) country on a commerical property in southern Queensland was studied over 3 yr. Representative animals were slaughtered at mean ages of about 880 and 1000 days and carcass characteristics examined. From weaning to 860 days of age, the CC.HH and CC.BH steers gained at a faster rate than the BB.HH steers, which in turn, grew faster than the HH.BH and HH.HH steers. Their growth rates were 0.58, 0.57, 0.55, 0.50 and 0.49 kg day-1, respectively. The CC.HH and the CC.BH steers dressed 309 kg with 6.5 mm fat and 308 kg with 7.0 mm fat, respectively. They were heavier (P < 0.05) and longer carcasses with less fat and with larger eye muscle areas, than the other genotypes. The BB.HH and HH.BH carcasses were intermediate, in terms of weight, being 291 kg and 278 kg, respectively, while the HH.HH carcasses were lighter (P < 0.05) at 260 kg. The HH.HH carcasses had similar fat cover to the HH.BH carcasses, 9.6 mm vs. 10.2 mm, and both had less fat cover than the BB.HH with 11.6 mm fat. Using the Australian Beef Carcases Appraisal System, the CC.HH and CC.BH carcasses scored more points (P < 0.05) than all other genotypes.