Bag Score by the numbers

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Doug Thorson

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CopyofY22.jpg

Bag score 4

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Bag score 5

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Bag score 6

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Bag Score 7

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Bag Score 8

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Bag score 9

I bag score all my cows from 1-9 and then put that in the catalog. I score them on the day they calve or maybe even the day before but these pictures weren't taken until later, but it should give you the idea.
Any comments?
 

P.A.L

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I wonder does Hugh Hefner do the same type of scoring before putting "them" on a catalog...

Nice cows.
 

KNERSIE

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I think you are probably overemphasising the udders. Apart from bag score 4 all are functional and shouldn't break down. I want to cow to raise a good calf without my help for her productive life and I think all the udders posted will do just that, what more do you need in a beef cow?

I would prefer bag score 7 over 8 and 9 if that front left teat didn't show signs of enlarging. I doubt that will ever become a bottle teat, though.

Selection pressure is always a good thing and I don't want to try and discourage you, but I see other areas in the cows that probably needs more urgent attention than their already very acceptable udders.
 

alacattleman

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KNERSIE":1k13mxjg said:
I think you are probably overemphasising the udders. Apart from bag score 4 all are functional and shouldn't break down. I want to cow to raise a good calf without my help for her productive life and I think all the udders posted will do just that, what more do you need in a beef cow?

I would prefer bag score 7 over 8 and 9 if that front left teat didn't show signs of enlarging. I doubt that will ever become a bottle teat, though.

Selection pressure is always a good thing and I don't want to try and discourage you, but I see other areas in the cows that probably needs more urgent attention than their already very acceptable udders.
there's a man around from me that bought a small herd of polled herf's good looking bunch..... but theres not one cow among em with a half way exceptable udder. im sure this was a older herd, but were there bloodline in the polled breed that were known for it this
 

KNERSIE

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but were there bloodline in the polled breed that were known for it this

Most older hereford genetics weren't exactly known for their udders, that was one of the breed's faults of the past. This group of cows looks dehorned to me.

My point is that there are other areas that need improvement on these cows, their udders are fine. Maybe the cows get rated for others traits the same way they do for udders, but to rate udders to the point of looking for flees serves no purpose when the rest aren't paid equal attention.
 

alacattleman

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KNERSIE":ro6gtuvu said:
but were there bloodline in the polled breed that were known for it this

Most older hereford genetics weren't exactly known for their udders, that was one of the breed's faults of the past. This group of cows looks dehorned to me.
My point is that there are other areas that need improvement on these cows, their udders are fine. Maybe the cows get rated for others traits the same way they do for udders, but to rate udders to the point of looking for flees serves no purpose when the rest aren't paid equal attention.
thoses are he runs horned cattle
 

Northern Rancher

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The day a cow calves is the day that defines how acceptable her udder is-calving on green grass is a bit more unforgiving than at other times. On our place if a cow gets a U- score in the calf book she is only used to produce feedlot cattle-her heifer usually gets spayed or not exposed to a bull.
 

Herefords.US

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KNERSIE":2wdazc45 said:
I think you are probably overemphasising the udders. Apart from bag score 4 all are functional and shouldn't break down. I want to cow to raise a good calf without my help for her productive life and I think all the udders posted will do just that, what more do you need in a beef cow?

I would prefer bag score 7 over 8 and 9 if that front left teat didn't show signs of enlarging. I doubt that will ever become a bottle teat, though.

Selection pressure is always a good thing and I don't want to try and discourage you, but I see other areas in the cows that probably needs more urgent attention than their already very acceptable udders.

I couldn't agree more! They're BEEF cattle, not dairy cattle! As long as an udder remains functional, there are more important traits to work on!

George
 

TexasBred

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Herefords.US":1w0z3aux said:
KNERSIE":1w0z3aux said:
I think you are probably overemphasising the udders. Apart from bag score 4 all are functional and shouldn't break down. I want to cow to raise a good calf without my help for her productive life and I think all the udders posted will do just that, what more do you need in a beef cow?

I would prefer bag score 7 over 8 and 9 if that front left teat didn't show signs of enlarging. I doubt that will ever become a bottle teat, though.

Selection pressure is always a good thing and I don't want to try and discourage you, but I see other areas in the cows that probably needs more urgent attention than their already very acceptable udders.

I couldn't agree more! They're BEEF cattle, not dairy cattle! As long as an udder remains functional, there are more important traits to work on!

George

Guess everybody looks at things differently but I won't have a cow with a long sagging udder, jerked up front quarters or a big teat. Just a sign of a weak trait in the cow that might be passed on to the offspring so doubtful you'll ever get a good replacement heifer out of her.
 
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Doug Thorson

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No, the cows aren't perfect, yes, they are Line 1. The reason for scoring the bags is that around here selling hereford bulls is a little tough because everyone remembers any problem they ever had with a hereford cow. Because of that I set some rules.

1 45 days, get bred or get dead!
2 Have your own calf, if I pull it, it gets sold as a feeder.
3 Get him up and sucking on your own, no barns, no help. (I did fudge a little by giving them an open shed this year during the last 2 blizzards.)
4 Don't prolapse. I haven't had a prolapse since 2000. Every cow that prolapses gets sold along with every daughter, granddaughter etc.
5 Raise your own calf because I refuse to draft calves.
6 Get the calf grown on grass. No supplement other than mineral after grass tetnous time.
7 see rule #1
Also, as soon as a heifer is called bred, she goes with the cows and gets NO special treatment. All cows calf together and I pick what I want to go to certain breeding pastures and if the heifers can't keep up, bye bye.
I feel way too many seedstock producers cut themselves off at the knees by giving every animal every chance to succeed and then wonder why their customers aren't satisfied. I give every animal every chance to fail and if I can't get them to fail then I think they are the type that won't give my customers bad memories.
Doug Thorson
Owner, Operator and Chief Hardass
Hardass Cattle Company

ps when I get my new bull I will post some bull pictures so you can critique them.
 

KNERSIE

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Doug Thorson":3ivvp36n said:
No, the cows aren't perfect, yes, they are Line 1. The reason for scoring the bags is that around here selling hereford bulls is a little tough because everyone remembers any problem they ever had with a hereford cow. Because of that I set some rules.

1 45 days, get bred or get dead!
2 Have your own calf, if I pull it, it gets sold as a feeder.
3 Get him up and sucking on your own, no barns, no help. (I did fudge a little by giving them an open shed this year during the last 2 blizzards.)
4 Don't prolapse. I haven't had a prolapse since 2000. Every cow that prolapses gets sold along with every daughter, granddaughter etc.
5 Raise your own calf because I refuse to draft calves.
6 Get the calf grown on grass. No supplement other than mineral after grass tetnous time.
7 see rule #1
Also, as soon as a heifer is called bred, she goes with the cows and gets NO special treatment. All cows calf together and I pick what I want to go to certain breeding pastures and if the heifers can't keep up, bye bye.
I feel way too many seedstock producers cut themselves off at the knees by giving every animal every chance to succeed and then wonder why their customers aren't satisfied. I give every animal every chance to fail and if I can't get them to fail then I think they are the type that won't give my customers bad memories.
Doug Thorson
Owner, Operator and Chief Hardass
Hardass Cattle Company

ps when I get my new bull I will post some bull pictures so you can critique them.

We breed by more or less the same rules.

Out of curiosity, apart from bad udders, what other problems did herefords give in the past that everyone still remembers in your experience from talking to potential bull buyers?

And how do you address those issues?
 
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Doug Thorson

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Prolapses, bad eyes, bad feet, lethargic calves, big birthweight and a whole list of udder issues like big teats, sunburned bags and not milking after August 1st.
I have been addressing the ones not already covered in the rules with pigment and performance. Bad feet are partially a case of being efficient(founder on way less feed than most breeds) which I don't want to breed out but proper structure will help some.
 

KNERSIE

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Prolapses, bad eyes, bad feet, lethargic calves, big birthweight and a whole list of udder issues like big teats, sunburned bags and not milking after August 1st.

Can't say prolapse is a problem here or ever was a big problem, bad feet typically isn't a hereford problem here either, birthweight seems to definately creep upwards especially in herds chasing the latest fashion in bulls, but generally herefords are still considered a caling ease breed here. Can't say we've had the same bag issues you seemed to have, but I'd say that our herefords of the past probably could have milked better.

Pigment alone won't do much for the eye issues, that seems the problem most breeders have neglected to address especially in the USA. I don't think there is any other factor that has cost the breed as much in bull marketshare as the failure to address the ongoing eye issues.
 
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Doug Thorson

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I will admit to being a bit behind on the bad eye thing. I only lose 1 cow every 5 or so years to a bad eye but at Miles City I was talking to a couple guys and they were talking about losing 1-2 cows per year. I thought then that pigment was really helping but maybe it is just my cows have been pressured for so long that problems have been weeded out.
 

tlmcr

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I have to disagree with the argument that they are just beef cows and udders are not that important. I cull very hard for udder quality and other important traits, it is not mutually exclusive, you can focus on quality udders and other traits at the same time.

The AHA adopted a new 2 digit score with the first number being udder attachment and the second teat size. I am the most concerned about teat size and focused on improving in this area.

I also think nothing detracts from the look of a nursing cow like a poor udder.
 

TexasBred

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tlmcr":3qwwc84y said:
I have to disagree with the argument that they are just beef cows and udders are not that important. I cull very hard for udder quality and other important traits, it is not mutually exclusive, you can focus on quality udders and other traits at the same time.

The AHA adopted a new 2 digit score with the first number being udder attachment and the second teat size. I am the most concerned about teat size and focused on improving in this area.

I also think nothing detracts from the look of a nursing cow like a poor udder.

:clap: :clap: :clap: And women. :lol2:
 

KNERSIE

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I also think nothing detracts from the look of a nursing cow like a poor udder.

No-one is condoning poor udders, there is just limits to how far udder selection needs to be pushed. If your herd is otherwise top notch by all means fiddle around with udders to the point of being anal, but a picture perfect udder under a light boned, angular hard keeping cow with structural faults and poor eyes is about as usefull as tits on a boar hog in a seedstock operation.
 

Herefords.US

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KNERSIE":py6ik9db said:
I also think nothing detracts from the look of a nursing cow like a poor udder.

No-one is condoning poor udders, there is just limits to how far udder selection needs to be pushed. If your herd is otherwise top notch by all means fiddle around with udders to the point of being anal, but a picture perfect udder under a light boned, angular hard keeping cow with structural faults and poor eyes is about as usefull as tits on a boar hog in a seedstock operation.

I agree, Knersie! I'm sure not condoning POOR udders! Perhaps I should define what I mean by "functional". A FUNCTIONAL udder, to me, is one that provides enough milk for a fat calf and is trouble free.

Here's a video of a 5 year old cow that sold in Double L's sale this weekend. Would anyone cull her because of her udder?

[youtube]<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/cpv-iW6rjIY&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/cpv-iW6rjIY&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>[/youtube]

George
 
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Doug Thorson

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I wouldn't cull her from what I can tell, but she is already sucked out and if there is any balloon in her teats, YES, I have culled for udders a lot like hers that ballooned until sucked and then were fine. Unneccessary work is never profitable and I do not help calves suck without culling their mother.!
 

Nesikep

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I agree, as long as the cow makes decent milk, and the calf doesn't have a problem finding the teats when they're born, there are more important reasons to cull for exclusively

here's Rosie, she's had 12 calves
LillooetOct92007086.jpg


she raises a calf well in the 600-700 lb range and she's not a big cow, I'm happy with that, also, she's really easy keeping
 
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