Creep Feeding Beef Calves
Creep feeding is the practice of providing supplemental feed (grain or forage) to nursing calves. This is usually done with the use of a creep gate, which is large enough for calves to enter the feeding area but too small to allow cows to pass. Creep feeding systems vary from grain-based energy supplements to limit-fed protein supplements to creep grazing. Each system generally produces increased growth, which may or may not be profitable. Creep feeding, like any other supplementation practice, must be analyzed based on estimates of expected increases in performance and income compared to the costs of these improvements. This publication discusses the advantages and disadvantages of creep feeding.