WASHINGTON – Cattle and calves on feed for slaughter in feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head totaled 10.9 million head on April 1, 2014, 1 percent below the year-ago inventory, the US Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service reported.

The inventory of steers and calves gained 2 percent. This included 7.07 million steers and steer calves which accounted for 65 percent of the total inventory. Heifers and heifer calves accounted for 3.71 million head, down 6 percent from 2013.

Placements in feedlots during March declined 5 percent to 1.80 million. Net placements were 1.73 million head. During March, placements of cattle and calves weighing less than 600 lbs. were 425,000, 600-699 lbs. were 290,000, 700-799 lbs. were 465,000 and 800 lbs. and greater were 615,000.

Marketings of fed cattle during March declined 4 percent to 1.66 million. Marketings for March are the lowest since 1996.

Other disappearance totaled 65,000 during March, 20 percent below 2013.