Improving 'Feed Efficiency' in Cattle
2012-11-13 00:30:09

From VOA Learning English, this is the Agriculture Report in Special English.(1)

Animal feed is the biggest cost for most cattle producers. In the United States, the cost of hay, grains and other feed has risen sharply because of a drought.(2)

At the same time, wildfires this year burned more than a million hectares of North American rangeland.(3)
与此同时,野火今年烧北美牧场的超过 100 万公顷。

Jack Field raises cattle in the northwestern state of Washington. To save money, he made plans to truck his small herd of cows three hundred kilometers to feed on crop stubble.(4)

Crop stubble is what remains after crops have been harvested.(5)

Moving his cattle from farm to farm costs money and time. But he says if he can avoid feeding them hay, he can still make a profit.(6)

Tim DelCurto is a beef scientist at Oregon State University. He is working with ranchers and feedlot owners to help them find lower cost ways to feed cattle.(7)
Tim DelCurto 是一个牛肉俄勒冈州立大学的科学家。他正在与农场主和饲养场业主,协助他们寻找低成本方式喂牛。

He says cattle can eat things like grass-seed straw and distillers grains. These grains are left over from ethanol fuel production.(8)
他说: 牛可以吃草种子秸秆和酿酒谷物一样的东西。这些粮食是从乙醇燃料生产留下的。

He says cattle can also eat cannery waste and items rejected by vegetable processors -- like misshapen green beans, carrots, even French fries.(9)
他说: 牛还可以吃罐头废物和项目拒绝了蔬菜处理器 — — 像畸形青豆,胡萝卜,甚至炸薯条。

"Now I think one of the unique attributes of beef cattle -- and sheep would fit this, too -- is that they can virtually digest anything."(10)
"现在,我认为一个牛肉牛 — — 的独特属性和羊将适合这,太 — — 是他们几乎可以消化任何东西"。

The rising cost of feed has led agricultural research universities to give greater attention to what experts call "feed efficiency." The University of Idaho has a cattle barn where sensors measure exactly how much food each cow eats.(11)

Professor Rod Hill says just because animals are growing at the same rate does not mean they eat the same amount of food.(12)

In fact the difference in how efficiently their bodies convert feed into meat, fat, bone and hide might be surprising.(13)
其实在他们的尸体如何高效地饲料转换为肉类、 脂肪、 骨和隐藏的差异可能是令人惊讶。

"These animals are -- for your eye and mine -- they look quite homogenous. But the variation in intake for animals growing at the same rate is of the order of thirty-five percent."(14)
"这些动物都是 — — 你的眼睛和矿井--它们看上去相当一致。但摄入动物以相同的速度增长的变化是百分之三十五左右。

This is a case where humans and animals have something in common.(15)

"You know, we talk to people who say, 'All I have to do is, is, is look at the candy store and, and I put on three pounds.' We don't actually quantify it so precisely in humans, but we know in humans that some people can eat a little and they can put on quite a bit of weight and some people can eat a lot and hardly put on any weight. So it's a biological phenomenon."(16)
' 你知道,我们跟人说,' 我要做是,是,看看糖果店和,并将我放三磅。 '我们实际上不量化它所以正是在人类,但我们知道在人类,有些人可以吃到有点和他们可以穿上相当多的重量,有些人可以吃很多,很难提出任何重量。所以它是一种生物现象。"

Rod Hill says ranchers can use selective breeding to get the same growth with less feed. But he says not to focus too much on one thing, like reducing fat.(17)

"Less-efficient animals are slightly fatter, and more-efficient animals are slightly leaner.(18)

So we wouldn't want to just go after efficiency and then forget about the body composition.(19)

So, we wouldn't want animals to become too lean, so that might reduce marbling in the product, especially in the quality cuts where the profit is."(20)

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