Feeding only milk and grain how much grain is required to get a cross need bottle calf to 500lb?
Genesee County Michigan
The amount of grain required for a calf could vary widely. Of course, a calf could be grown, being weaned from milk onto forages and not require any grain at all. However, they will typically grow better with higher energy feedstuffs, such as grain. If one assumes that the average weight of the calf is ~300 lb (going from 100 to 500 lb) and that they would typically eat between .5 and 1.0% of their weight as grain, and that they grow at approximately 2.5 lb/day, the range would be (1.5-3 lb/d x 160 d) roughly 240 to 480 lb of grain. Again, this would depend upon the quality of other feeds fed, etc.
A diet designed for a starter dairy calf at this weight should work equally as well for a beef calf. You may want to check with a local feed supplier on a calf starter type diet.
If you need help developing a diet, a beef extension educator may be able to help: