Nicolas DiLorenzo, UF/IFAS Beef Specialist, and Doug Mayo, UF/IFAS Jackson County Extension Director
Nominations are currently being accepted for the 2020-21 Florida Bull Test. To qualify, bulls must have been born between August 15 and December 31, 2019. If you would like to nominate bulls, please submit the Florida Bull Test Nomination Form by June 15. Rules and entry forms, and the 2020 schedule are available on the Florida Bull Test web page, or by calling 850-526-1611 for additional information.
The 2020-21 Florida Bull Test will be the 21st edition, with the goal of providing timely and valuable information to producers to make sound decisions about beef cattle genetics in their herds and seedstock operations. In a survey conducted in the 2020 Florida Bull Test Sale, buyers indicated that calves sired from bulls purchased from the Florida Bull Test have a perceived increased value of $67/head. The test provides the opportunity to measure growth and reproductive performance over a period of 112 days, taking advantage of the technology at the Feed Efficiency Facility of the University of Florida-NFREC. This facility measures individual feed intake and feed efficiency. In addition, the test provides an opportunity for consignors to market superior genetics through the Florida Bull Sale, which provides commercial producers access to uniformly performance-tested sires. The inclusion of online bidding has expanded the reach of the test, with potential buyers being able to access high-quality videos of the bulls and catalog information from the Florida Bull Test web page.
Results from the 2019-20 Florida Bull Test Sale
The 2019-20 Florida Bull Test Sale was successfully completed on January 18, 2020 at the University of Florida’s North Florida Research and Education Center. This year marked the 20th anniversary of this valuable extension program, with an excellent turnout and a very dynamic sale of 57 bulls from 6 different breeds. The sale grossed $159,900, with an average of $2,805 per lot, $201 higher than the average sale price of the bulls from the previous year sale. SimAngus bulls averaged $2,874 on 23 lots, while Angus bulls averaged $2,579 on 19 lots. Simmental bulls averaged $3,081 on 8 lots, and the 5 lots of Hereford bulls averaged $2,770 each. The only Wagyu and Ultrablack bulls in the sale sold for $3,300 and $3,000, respectively. The high-selling bull was a SIMAngus (lot 5), GTF Prophet Maker F472, which sold for $4,550, and was consigned by GambleTown Farm, Columbia, Alabama.
Overall Bull Test Performance and Top Bull Tests
Bulls consigned to the 2019 Florida Bull Test had an overall average ADG of 3.49 lb/day, with a feed intake of 23.99 lbs of DM/day, and an average feed-to-gain ratio of 7.69, measured on the first 56 days of the test while on the Feed Efficiency Facility. Table 1 below provides a summary of the top performing bulls in each of the breed categories. The overall Top Indexing Bull was WOODLAWN SOLDIER (SimAngus), consigned by Woodlawn Farms. The index used to rank bulls is calculated as the sum of average daily gain (ADG) and weight per day of age (WDA). The Top Feed Efficiency Bull, based on the lowest value of residual feed intake (RFI), was a SimAngus bull, DAN’S F01, consigned by Daniel W. Gorbet, Greenwood, Florida.
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