Conformation critique please

The place to start if you are new!
Post Reply
tlan6556@aol.com
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Sep 29, 2019 5:43 pm
Has thanked: 21 times
Been thanked: 1 time

Conformation critique please

Post by tlan6556@aol.com » Mon Oct 07, 2019 2:18 am

I am a newbie here, and actually an inexperienced rookie with any discussion board, so, please be patient with me.
A few years ago I bought two shorthorn heifers and started a small operation of
breeding for shorthorn show prospects. Just a hobby type plan for something to do and keep me busy when I retire. I have never been in any kind of livestock business, although, I have been around family and friends who breed and train sport horses and performance/speed horses. I learned a few things along the way, not to mention just a lover of animals. However, since I started my little herd, the most unanticipated lesson learned so far is that breeding and producing calves is a whole lot easier than marketing and selling them. I do not show so, I'm not in that loop, but I have made some very nice and helpful contacts. I started out with the purchase of one calf, an Asset daughter, and bred her to Fair Red White and Roan which produced a beautiful (yes, my prejudiced opinion) 93# heifer calf. It was a quick 30 min, observed, uncomplicated and unassisted delivery. Her weaning weight at 7mos was 700lbs. I had been posting her pics and descriptions on Face Book (even though I hate FB) offering for sale as suggested by some of my new friends and contacts who also passed the word around to their contacts. I had a few interested visitors, but no body ever committed to a deal. I also put the second calf in an online scholarship auction, no bids. I tried to contact the Ag teachers at the two area high schools, but never received any replies or even acknowledgements to my emails or phone messages. I thought that was just rude!
The cow was bred back to Hot Commodity and produced another really pretty heifer calf at 90 lbs, another quick, uncomplicated, observed and unassisted delivery. I understand that these birth weights are high and undesirable, but this cow had no problems spitting them out and she is also an awesome mother with lots of milk.
Now having said all that I was hoping someone would look at their attached unprofessional pics and teach me a little bit about conformation, their faults, [image][/image]maybe why they don't sell, and discuss some marketing ideas. I understand coming to an opinion may be difficult with these random, not fitted/groomed, unprofessional pics, but will appreciate anyone's perspective. The Hot Commodity heifer is now confirmed bred (first pregnancy) to Kane Captain, due Feb 2020.
Pregnancy confirmations of the Red White and Roan heifer and the cow are pending.
The pics attached are not current, but taken about the time they were offered for sale.
I will greatly appreciate any thoughts, opinions, advice, discussions, or ideas.
Not sure I know how to attach pics that have been uploaded to my gallery, there are four, will try.



User avatar
alisonb
GURU
GURU
Posts: 5129
Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2009 7:37 am
Location: South Africa
Has thanked: 282 times
Been thanked: 263 times

Re: Conformation critique please

Post by alisonb » Mon Oct 07, 2019 6:42 am

Image

Image

Image

Image

:welcome:
Few is the number who think with their own minds and feel with their own hearts. Albert Einstein
Never trouble trouble till trouble troubles you!

tlan6556@aol.com
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Sep 29, 2019 5:43 pm
Has thanked: 21 times
Been thanked: 1 time

Re: Conformation critique please

Post by tlan6556@aol.com » Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:10 am

Thank you, glad to be here!

User avatar
Nesikep
Mentor
Mentor
Posts: 15074
Joined: Sat Dec 13, 2008 9:37 pm
Location: Lillooet, BC, Canada
Has thanked: 827 times
Been thanked: 632 times

Re: Conformation critique please

Post by Nesikep » Mon Oct 07, 2019 10:02 am

I like them all except the 2nd one.. she's got long legs and a short body
Welcome :)
What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence
-Christopher Hitchens

User avatar
Boot Jack Bulls
GURU
GURU
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Jun 05, 2015 7:03 pm
Location: NW WI
Has thanked: 9 times
Been thanked: 149 times

Re: Conformation critique please

Post by Boot Jack Bulls » Mon Oct 07, 2019 10:27 am

At a quick glance, here's what I see from a show ring perspective:
Heifer 1- Most complete, big boned, fairly deep. Short-necked, fairly heavy fronted for a shorthorn and poor coat pattern placement (white splotches on her top line make her tail-head look poor and her shoulder transition less than smooth, and the white underline makes her look shallow gutted).
Heifer 2- Super green in her condition (not always a bad thing) and pretty leggy. Lacks natural depth or muscle expression. Most will see her as going to take a ton of feed to make it to a show ring. In the more recent photo, she shows she is way to straight in her hocks, likely the cause of the long toes (incorrect hock angle often causes the animal to have too low of a heel and too steep of a pastern, so they wear and grow their hooves in an undesirable fashion).

I would think the first heifer would compete at a local level for most people. She won't make a NWSS or NAILE champ, but should get the job done on a smaller scale and should make a more productive female.

The second heifer would not make it to the replacement pen in my very honest opinion....
Last edited by Boot Jack Bulls on Mon Oct 07, 2019 11:24 am, edited 2 times in total.
Boot Jack Cattle LLC & Boot Jack Boers

tlan6556@aol.com
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Sep 29, 2019 5:43 pm
Has thanked: 21 times
Been thanked: 1 time

Re: Conformation critique please

Post by tlan6556@aol.com » Mon Oct 07, 2019 10:54 am

Ahhh, very informative and helpful! Thank you for such a detailed lesson.

76 Bar
Rancher
Rancher
Posts: 866
Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 1:17 pm
Location: South Western Oregon
Has thanked: 307 times
Been thanked: 225 times

Re: Conformation critique please

Post by 76 Bar » Mon Oct 07, 2019 11:28 am

Firstly, welcome and your unvarnished forthrightness regarding your "history" is greatly appreciated. 8)
Likely not what you wanted to hear but Boot Jack Bull's assessment is spot on IMO. For a variety of reasons Short Horn cattle have fallen out of favor with mainstream cattle production in modern times & consequently are typically considered a niche breed today which is a shame as in past they brought a lot to the table...pardon the pun. If you wish to continue this route, I'd seek out a respected and successful SH breeder for guidance.
Last but certainly not least your photos depict well cared for animals and facilities. :tiphat:

tlan6556@aol.com
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Sep 29, 2019 5:43 pm
Has thanked: 21 times
Been thanked: 1 time

Re: Conformation critique please

Post by tlan6556@aol.com » Mon Oct 07, 2019 12:48 pm

Thank you so much! I was expecting honest opinions only, you can’t hurt my feelings with the truth!
Actually, there is another option on our table. We could transition to a small (very small), cow/calf operation. We have only 65 acres with a lot of old oaks and brush and would need to clear a lot more, but so far just a thought. We truly enjoy our country life now and are so thankful for our little slice of heaven.

Post Reply