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Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 10:14 pm
by Brad S
Fertility is on everyone's list of most important traits for the brood cow. Marc data indicates the limmy cow is uniquely a lower fertility breed. Moreover, 150,000# of limmy cows in a pasture won't produce the calves 150,000# moderate black cows will. I don't care how much feed you have, #of cowherd/#calf crop is a primary determinant of profitability.

Marc data has shown the gelbveigh breed to be uniquely fertile.

I don't see limmy offering any improvement to a good black cow. Hell yes the limmy cross terminal calf is improved by the limmy. The gelbveigh cross offers fertility improvement tothe black cow, but also some negative issues like calf size. Good black cows are so good, I'd tread lightly crossing them with anything. The black cow is good enough to coverup the gelbveigh calf size issues. Blacks and gelbveighs can both get too big to make an optimal factory, keep your cow size a consideration. Milk used to be an issue, but since the merging of the stein breed and angus breed, too much is likely more of a problem than too little.

I'd be interested in everyone's opinion on cow trait priority. Frankly, there is an elite cashe of stockmanship on this board. Soapweed and faster horses and mrj used to be young, and they traded that for smart.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Sun Aug 13, 2017 5:55 am
by Red Bull
The MARC research herd is a pretty sorry bunch. Maybe they need me to breed limis for them.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Sun Aug 13, 2017 7:38 am
by backhoeboogie
m5farm wrote:
highgrit wrote:How about a good Brangus?

I'm considering that option also. I do love a little ear and they do make the best mamas


Super baldies. Females is what you want to sell at the sale barns around here. Steers grade prime too.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Sun Aug 13, 2017 7:39 am
by PPRM
When we Direct Market Beef, we are asked about Breed. People want to hear Black Angus. They really don't know why though.

We started with the unique breed, "Best buy at the sale." It was what we could afford and gave us a good start. Mostly they turned out to be good cows. We have used Angus and Simangus predominantly since. Once I went Red Angus and another time I threw in a Polled Hereford. I like the Simmental influence in that I am not one bit worried about keeping heifers from that breed. Especially the cross.

What I tell people is you can find good and bad in every breed. Angus is the most marketable. MARC has shown Simmental to have generally great carcass traits including shear score. What is your market? We actually have had to moderate our calves to get them into the butcher shops we deal with. 700-750 lb carcass is ideal. The premium we get is worth the loss in weight. That is hard to find IMO. But, I also don't think it is sustainable to sell Ribeye Primals to similar shops off of 900 lb carcasses.

We have more breeding and trait information than ever before. When shear force information became readily available, I thought, "That is it!" What I came to realize is I was really limiting myself with the top Shear Force score bulls. I realized we don't get complaints about chewy beef. I attribute that in part to the Simmental influence. So, I use that as an eliminator of bulls more than a primary trait. By that, I mean as long as they are in the top 1/2 of the breed, we are fine. I look at other traits first. i only state that as an example of focusing too much on one trait versus the reality of a program.

In the "more information than ever" vein, I feel we may be narrowing our breeds to less diversity than ever before. In my last go round with bull selection, most Bulls I looked at were related to Hooks Shear Force. I feel like most of the better carcass trait bulls in any breed tend to be related. That narrowing of the gene pool concerns me. Inbreeding has downsides I don't want to explore. So, what I am looking at is considering other breeds to cross in.

As I thought of other breeds, What is important to me is great cows, great carcasses of moderate size and ease of running the cattle. Ease of running means unassisted births with calf vigor and fantastic mothering instincts coupled with disposition.

Where i think I may be headed next is using some Shorthorn. As I stated in the beginning, my start was with a bunch of different cattle. The Shorthorn influence from those original cows was certainly something I like. And, we have feed for good milkers.

That's my story. If I were selling to the commodity market, I would also consider Gelbvieh and Charolais as crosses.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Sun Aug 13, 2017 10:43 pm
by Brad S
"The MARC research herd is a pretty sorry bunch. Maybe they need me to breed limis for them."

I've had marc sired calves on feed gain 5#/day, on 5# dm, at their 90 day weigh in (94 days I think). Wish I could get some of them there good cattle.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 2:24 pm
by turning grass into beef
PPRM wrote:Where i think I may be headed next is using some Shorthorn. As I stated in the beginning, my start was with a bunch of different cattle. The Shorthorn influence from those original cows was certainly something I like. And, we have feed for good milkers.

If you decide to use a shorthorn bull, make sure that you find a shorthorn breeder that is breeding cattle with the commercial cattleman in mind. I have been told that commercially minded shorthorn breeders are hard to find, but we are out there if you look for us. Unfortunately some people have purchased bulls from show ring focused breeders and think that all shorthorn cattle are like that. This is not the case.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:09 pm
by PPRM
turning grass into beef wrote:
PPRM wrote:Where i think I may be headed next is using some Shorthorn. As I stated in the beginning, my start was with a bunch of different cattle. The Shorthorn influence from those original cows was certainly something I like. And, we have feed for good milkers.

If you decide to use a shorthorn bull, make sure that you find a shorthorn breeder that is breeding cattle with the commercial cattleman in mind. I have been told that commercially minded shorthorn breeders are hard to find, but we are out there if you look for us. Unfortunately some people have purchased bulls from show ring focused breeders and think that all shorthorn cattle are like that. This is not the case.



I don't think my guy in Corvallis Montana shows cattle. He had a pen of calves that topped feed efficiency on a feed test in Salmon ID I believe.

He has sent me videos of his cows with new calves. The dispositions are pretty good and everything seems to be the easier fleshing kind. Really nice and tight udders as well. He appears to breed to make cows. I'm liking his program at this point.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:25 am
by turning grass into beef
I you are looking for low maintenance, easy fleshing cattle I think you will be happy with bulls from Ralph.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 3:04 pm
by PPRM
turning grass into beef wrote:I you are looking for low maintenance, easy fleshing cattle I think you will be happy with bulls from Ralph.



He was referred to me. I value that a lot. Guys could easily say nothing as they have no stake in it. They are impressed enough to refer him.

He sent videos. Beyond feed efficiency and fleshing as "Easy care", I was really impressed with the dispositions of the cows with new calves. In my conversations through email, he seems like a real straight shooter as well.

Re: Looking for Views

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 1:19 pm
by turning grass into beef
Docility is one of the traits that shorthorns excel in.