Bull Age and Rotation ?

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Stocker Steve

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We used to run mostly 16 month old bulls in 2 sire pastures. Worked OK except for all the cripples... Since we upgraded the bull battery, we now have mostly 2+ year old bulls. Calving window has really tighten up and is running about 80% in 21 days from the 283 mark.

Now thinking about going to a single sire pasture with a mature bull, pulling him at 21 days, and then turning in a long yearling. Any thoughts on this rotation?
 

M.Magis

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But why change bulls at all is I guess what I don't understand? Is it to move him to another herd that hasn't been bred yet?
 

cow pollinater

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I like to run a young bull with the older bull instead of two young bulls together. The young bull figures out pretty quick he only gets to play when the old bull is busy.
I don't like running two bulls of the same age from the same source together. It seems like they buddy up to much and that causes fights and keeps them from getting out and covering cows. You can cut back on that a little with bulls from two different sources.
 

Aaron

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I've never understood running multiple bulls in a pasture. Maybe if the group was over 50 cows - say 80 cows over 1000 acres. Had a bull as a 2 year old breed 7 cows in one day. Seen many mature bulls breed 4 or 5. Anytime I have seen multiple bulls running it was just a recipe for disaster. Guys think it tightens up their breeding season and I have seen just the opposite countless times.

Bulls have one job. And if they can't do it - well I do love bologna.
 

TCRanch

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cow pollinater":26927uj9 said:
I like to run a young bull with the older bull instead of two young bulls together. The young bull figures out pretty quick he only gets to play when the old bull is busy.
I don't like running two bulls of the same age from the same source together. It seems like they buddy up to much and that causes fights and keeps them from getting out and covering cows. You can cut back on that a little with bulls from two different sources.
That's what we do. The younger bull is essentially a back-up.
 
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Stocker Steve

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cow pollinater":2xu4gs1b said:
I like to run a young bull with the older bull instead of two young bulls together. The young bull figures out pretty quick he only gets to play when the old bull is busy.

I know this is common, but what do you gain?
Seems like you could do a breeding soundness exam and save on the second bull.
 

cow pollinater

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Stocker Steve":ptzm3z5l said:
cow pollinater":ptzm3z5l said:
I like to run a young bull with the older bull instead of two young bulls together. The young bull figures out pretty quick he only gets to play when the old bull is busy.

I know this is common, but what do you gain?
Seems like you could do a breeding soundness exam and save on the second bull.
Tighter breed up and peace of mind. Bulls can fail at any time. If I hadn't of done it that way last year I'd be in a world of hurt this year as two bulls failed on me.
Plus most of my pastures have a few to many cows for one bull. One bull could do it but there would be days where he didn't get to everything and it takes twenty one days for him to get another chance.
 

TCRanch

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Stocker Steve":10r8kyz0 said:
cow pollinater":10r8kyz0 said:
I like to run a young bull with the older bull instead of two young bulls together. The young bull figures out pretty quick he only gets to play when the old bull is busy.

I know this is common, but what do you gain?
Seems like you could do a breeding soundness exam and save on the second bull.
Perfect example this morning: both bulls (and 3 cows) were on 3 other cows this morning. It was a cluster and dangerous to be around. When you have a lot of cows coming into heat at the same time a 2nd bull doesn't absolutely guarantee but certainly ups the odds none of them will get "missed".

Another reason I like pairing an older/younger bull is because eventually the older will have to retire; the younger can then move to Alpha status and the cycle continues with another new/young bull.
 

True Grit Farms

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cow pollinater":1wircg7o said:
Stocker Steve":1wircg7o said:
cow pollinater":1wircg7o said:
I like to run a young bull with the older bull instead of two young bulls together. The young bull figures out pretty quick he only gets to play when the old bull is busy.

I know this is common, but what do you gain?
Seems like you could do a breeding soundness exam and save on the second bull.
Tighter breed up and peace of mind. Bulls can fail at any time. If I hadn't of done it that way last year I'd be in a world of hurt this year as two bulls failed on me.
Plus most of my pastures have a few to many cows for one bull. One bull could do it but there would be days where he didn't get to everything and it takes twenty one days for him to get another chance.

A young bull will keep a older bull hustling also. I learned don't ever put 2 bulls of the same age in with your cows.
 
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Stocker Steve

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cow pollinater":1ghy8hw3 said:
Tighter breed up and peace of mind. Bulls can fail at any time. If I hadn't of done it that way last year I'd be in a world of hurt this year as two bulls failed on me.

The best thing I have seen to tighten breed up is not relying on yearling bulls.

I believe in spare bulls, but not in every pasture.
 

Baldie Maker

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I myself like the premise; and have used and recommended it. Run first bull for a heat cycle or less (15 days) and swap. Young bull gets some practice but isn't task with being the bread winner for lack of a better term.
Instead of running bulls together, them battling and losing them they bred cows and get a break. When turned back out they seem reinvigorated and handle their business. I like having spare bulls but ours cost too much for me to feel comfortable with them running together and risking broken legs and penises while servicing cows.
If parentage is a must you can use DNA.
 

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