Effect of dietary crude protein source on hormone and follicle characteristics in beef heifers

J. L. Martin, D. M. Larson, H. L. Stroh, A. S. Cupp, R. N. Funston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Ground, raw soybeans (SB), or dried distillers grain plus solubles (DDGS) were utilized in heifer development diets to determine the effect of dietary fat and protein source on hormone and follicle characteristics and ADG. The experiment was conducted over 2 yr with 100 June-born heifers (199 ± 2 kg initial BW, n = 50 per yr). The experimental periods were 157 and 207 d in yr 1 and 2, respectively. Heifers were provided a dietary supplement (DM basis) of 1.23 kg of SB and 0.40 kg of corn or 1.65 kg of DDGS between weaning and breeding. Estrus was synchronized with 2 injections of PGF 14 d apart. Dominant follicles were measured and aspirated via transvaginal ultrasonography 60 h after the second PGF injection. Heifers were exposed to bulls beginning 14 d after aspiration for 45 d. Heifer ADG was greater (P = 0.02) for DDGS heifers in yr 1, but was similar (P = 0.47) in yr 2. However, there was no difference (P = 0.35) in final BW in either year. There was no difference (P ≥ 0.67) in follicle size, follicle hormone concentrations, or pregnancy rate (88%) between yr 1 and 2. Serum estrogen at 48 or 60 h after PGF injection were similar (P ≥ 0.91); however, LH at 60 h in yr 2 tended to be greater (P = 0.07) for DDGS heifers. The percentage of heifers experiencing an LH surge 48 and 60 h after PGF injection was not affected (P ≥ 0.40) by treatment. Calf production was not affected (P ≥ 0.20) by developmental diet. In summary, DDGS and SB have similar effects on hormone and follicle characteristics at the inclusion rates used in these studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)937-942
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of animal science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2010


  • Fertility
  • Heifer development
  • Protein supplement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics


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