Beef Teaching Center
Hours of Operation
The Stanley P. Wilson Beef Teaching Center is located on campus near the intersection of Shug Jordan Pkwy and Wire Road. Visitors are welcome daily between 8 am and 3 pm. Tours should be arranged in advance with the farm manager.
The AU Beef Teaching Center was built in 2003 for beef cattle teaching, research and extension programs. The facility has two animal metabolism rooms and a prep lab for beef cattle research projects, two working chutes (manual & hydraulic), a modern classroom, and a conference room for smaller group meetings. The beef teaching center is AAALAC International accredited, demonstrating commitment to responsible animal care and use.
The facility serves as a teaching laboratory for several Animal Sciences courses including introductory animal science, beef production, reproductive physiology, modern livestock systems, livestock evaluation, and special problems. The modern working facilities provide students with many opportunities to gain hands-on experience. The beef production class participates in calving out the cow herd as well as maintaining health programs of the cow herd. The center also supports extension programs targeting youth and adults interested in the beef cattle industry and is the site for many Block & Bridle, 4-H, and FFA activities throughout the year.
One of the beef center pastures has been sub-divided into six 0.7-acre plots to measure water quality in runoff from grazed pastures. Each plot has sampling instrumentation to sample water and soil runoff and to measure ambient temperature, wind speed and direction, solar radiation and soil temperature. This may be the only facility of its kind in the U.S. that is located on a university campus and permanently dedicated to pastures for grazing cattle.
The BTU cow herd consists of approximately 40 registered Angus and 20 registered Beefmaster cows. The cattle are maintained in pastures, 100 acres on campus and 90 acres north of Auburn, which consist primarily of bermudagrass, bahiagrass, and fescue. Pastures are seeded with clover and either ryegrass or a small grain for winter forage. The pastures vary in size from 5 acres to 30 acres and are grazed on a rotational basis. We have fall calving season for purebred cattle and small spring calving group for crossbreeding purposes. Artificial Insemination is used in purebreds for 40 days and the bulls are turned out for 35 days to maintain a 75 day calving season. For the spring calving group a bull is turned out for 60 days to produce crossbred calves.
Last Updated: August 09, 2012