• Temperament Does Not Affect Steer Weight Gains on Extensively Managed Semiarid Rangeland

      Reeves, Justin L.; Derner, Justin D. (Society for Range Management, 2015-12-01)
      On the Ground • Cattle with poor temperaments gain less weight in feedlots. However, how yearling steer temperament affects weight gain on rangelands is a knowledge gap for ranchers. • Flight speed, the speed at which cattle exit a chute after weighing, has been used to measure temperament in past feedlot studies (faster speed = poor temperament). We used flight speed scores in this study to measure yearling steer temperament at the beginning (mid-May) and end (early-October) of grazing seasons for 3 years: 2011–2013. • We hypothesized that steer weight gains on extensively managed semiarid rangeland with low stocking densities (~0.11–0.15 steers/ha) would not be influenced by temperament due to the muh lower animal densities and fewer handling events than experienced in feedlots. • No meaningful relationships were found between season-beginning or season-ending flight speed score and steer average daily gain, and flight speed scores were often lower at the end of the season. • Results suggest that ranchers operating stocker enterprises with extensive management and low stocking densities on rangelands can potentially be less selective for temperament when assembling herds.