Opportunities to Utilize Cottonseed in Cattle Development Programs
New pelleted cottonseed products appear to have a reduced gossypol content which provides an alternative use for cottonseed products in weaning and development rations that can increase both protein and energy content simultaneously. Scientists at the Mississippi Agriculture and Forestry Experiment Station are assessing the feasibility of feeding a pelleted cottonseed product during the weaning and post-weaning phases as a component of beef bull development rations, which could result in an added market and utilization of cottonseed.
This project’s specific objectives are examining the inclusion of a pelleted cottonseed product (FuzzPellet) in a post-weaning ration for young growing beef bulls to enhance growth performance. It is anticipated that this study will establish guidelines and provide performance data from which the use of pelleted cottonseed may be used in beef bull development programs.
Feeding mature bulls four treatment rations for 168 days has been completed and the investigators are analyzing blood for concentrations of gossypol and total concentration of sperm collected and other sperm quality measurements. Next, the feeding study will be extended to 100 young bulls to determine the effects from weaning up through sexual maturity.
The project also will enable the investigators to present data collection results to the National Animal Science meeting and include in selected scientific publications.