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Herf question

Texas Gal

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So I'm sitting at the potluck yesterday at church chatting with a couple of guys about the warm weather,gardens, cows, etc. I mention that I'm considering buying a polled Hereford to put on a group of Angus/Brangus cows and heifers. A couple of them start in telling me what a train wreck it would be ......" you'll be pulling calves, that polled Hereford will throw calves with heads as big as basketballs, etc". It's been probably 13-14 years since we used any Herefords (with no calving issues that I can remember) other than the neighbor's bull breeding a few here and there. Has something happened in the Hereford world that I'm unaware of???? Is this really a problem is your using low/moderate birth weight bulls?
 

wacocowboy

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I have not run a Herf bull in a while and I always used horned bulls but never had trouble. Some people on here can probably refer you to some good bloodlines with calving ease.
 

Rafter S

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If you're putting him on mature cows then I wouldn't worry about it. I've used a Hereford bull on Brangus cows for years, and the only time I had a calving problem is when one of them jumped the fence and got in with my yearling heifers. He bred two of them. One delivered a live calf by herself, but then prolapsed, and died two days later. The other one calved two days later and didn't have any problems.
 

SPH

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I'm going to go out on a limb and guess you were possibly talking to guys that either haven't used Herefords in awhile or are horned Hereford guys because those comments sound exactly like ones I've heard before from that kind of crowd. The Hereford breed used to have a big problem with calving ease but the breed has done a great job fixing that issue over the years and there are plenty of calving ease bloodlines out there now in the Hereford breed. Saw a show on RFD TV the other month where one of the AI companies was talking about at one point they had a very hard time finding Hereford bulls to buy because of the calving ease issues and now that is no longer an issue for them as the breeders have made the necessary changes over the years to correct that problem.

Feel free to shoot me a PM if you have some questions or want some suggestions on polled bloodlines to look into. We had a stretch ourselves many years back where we didn't put enough emphasis on calving ease traits and after culling out that problem and putting more emphasis on making sure we don't ignore calving ease traits in our selection process we rarely have to assist with calving now unless the calf is not positioned right. I know some guys out there will tell you that EPDs are meaningless and I am skeptical at times about not leaning too heavily on them too. But when it comes to calving ease and birthweight traits I don't feel that you can ignore the extremes that you come across. Especially those with higher EPD accuracies as they have higher accuracies due to the volume of data on the progeny turned in on them.
 

cow pollinater

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I'm about three quarters done calving sixty head of smallish angus heifers bred to hereford bulls. I lost one early on and pulled one yesterday but the rest have been easy. The cow herd got bulls with some bigger BW epd's and from what I've seen from those calves so far I would not worry much if those bulls got mixed up with the heifers, either.
 

SPH

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cow pollinater":1u904nbd said:
I'm about three quarters done calving sixty head of smallish angus heifers bred to hereford bulls. I lost one early on and pulled one yesterday but the rest have been easy. The cow herd got bulls with some bigger BW epd's and from what I've seen from those calves so far I would not worry much if those bulls got mixed up with the heifers, either.

Just out of my own curiosity what kind of breeding are the Hereford bulls you are using? I always like to hear about what others are using and what their thoughts are. One of the best things that I feel anyone looking at ways to constantly improve their own cattle is to get feedback from those who are actually using something that they are not and get some honest feedback instead of trusting unreliable 3rd hand information they got somewhere or the personal bias some may have. I've said it many times even with just Hereford cattle, while we don't have interest in using horned bulls in our polled herd it doesn't mean that we can't appreciate a good horned bull when we see one as anyone that raises cattle should be able to do the same when they see a good animal and just not automatically write them off just because they would never personally breed it themselves. Especially for those in the seedstock business where you likely are selling to commercial cattlemen, you better have an open mind to hearing them out because the last thing many of them want is for someone else to preach/lecture to them about what they should be doing.
 

dun

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We've used various Polled Hereford bulls for the past 15 years. Never have had to pull one. There are folks that just plain don;t like Polled Herefords. Pretty much the way I am about Braunvieh and charolais, those we have pulled a bunch of.
 

Ky hills

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A few years ago, when I had my first Hereford bull, someone mentioned that sometimes they had calving trouble due to big heads. With that particular bull he had a fairly high birthweight EPD and we had pretty good calving results from him on cows. Now I am using a Hereford bull from a heifer that I bought as a bred through a registered sale. The sale catalogue referred to the heifer and the mating as being calving ease. The first calf was born yesterday, and that was 4 days earlier than the first possible due date. I would not be reluctant to breed heifers to a proven calving ease Hereford, and wouldn't be worried much at all about cows being bred to an average BW Hereford bull.
 

Texas Gal

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Thanks for all the responses. I think, as dun said, these guys just don't like polled Herefords. I'm hesitant to mention their age as I'm always eager to hear what the older folks have to say; they have a wealth of knowledge to share.They were all older gentlemen so maybe they had bad experiences in the past.
 

Muddy

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Some older folks are reluctant to use modern genetics of a said breed. For example, Simmentals and Charolais which are known cow killers in the past but today's Sims and Chars' calving ease has gotten improved.
 

mrvictordomino

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Texas Gal, I calve out forty plus two year old heifers every year using my own Polled Hereford genetics. No issues here. The genetics offered out there would dictate what bulls would be suitable to use on heifers.
 

Caustic Burno

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Texas Gal":xl421n9l said:
So I'm sitting at the potluck yesterday at church chatting with a couple of guys about the warm weather,gardens, cows, etc. I mention that I'm considering buying a polled Hereford to put on a group of Angus/Brangus cows and heifers. A couple of them start in telling me what a train wreck it would be ......" you'll be pulling calves, that polled Hereford will throw calves with heads as big as basketballs, etc". It's been probably 13-14 years since we used any Herefords (with no calving issues that I can remember) other than the neighbor's bull breeding a few here and there. Has something happened in the Hereford world that I'm unaware of???? Is this really a problem is your using low/moderate birth weight bulls?

Horse feathers some the best calves I ever had was on a polled Hereford on Brangus and Braford cows.
One of the more popular crosses in this area.
 

SPH

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This website really could use a "like" feature to use when you find posts that deserve them. Glad to see there are still some folks out there who see value in Herefords and don't buy into some of the stereotype BS some people spread out there. One man's opinion does not make it fact or truth
 

Ky hills

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SPH":xgvoz8t6 said:
This website really could use a "like" feature to use when you find posts that deserve them. Glad to see there are still some folks out there who see value in Herefords and don't buy into some of the stereotype BS some people spread out there. One man's opinion does not make it fact or truth

I agree, as far as I am concerned Herefords have a lot of good qualities. They have become the maternal breed of choice for my cowherd.
 

dun

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Around here you hear a lot of "they bred the meat and milk out of Polled Herefords".
 

Post Oak

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I grew up around Polled Herefords and I love them. The problem that a fella like me in my area that has a one bull herd where the same bull has to breed heifers and cows and then be resold after 2 or 3 years is finding quality affordable Hereford(Horned or Polled) bulls close to home. Within 100 miles (my hauling affordability limit) of my place , I can find Limo, Limflex, Simmental(not Simangus though), Beefmaster, Charolais, and gobs of Angus of good quality at a better price.
 

Lazy M

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What is the accepted minimum epd value for a "calving ease" polled Hereford bull? I've been looking at several to mostly use as clean-up for ai'ed angus crossed heifers and cows. I've seen many different values cited as heifer acceptable. BTW I will also pelvic measure the heifers prior to breeding.
 

elkwc

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Post Oak":fhzdyh2w said:
I grew up around Polled Herefords and I love them. The problem that a fella like me in my area that has a one bull herd where the same bull has to breed heifers and cows and then be resold after 2 or 3 years is finding quality affordable Hereford(Horned or Polled) bulls close to home. Within 100 miles (my hauling affordability limit) of my place , I can find Limo, Limflex, Simmental(not Simangus though), Beefmaster, Charolais, and gobs of Angus of good quality at a better price.

Post Oak it is the same here except I can find good Horned Herefords for a very reasonable price. When I find a Polled Hereford that is good enough to use in a commercial herd they call him a herd bull and want 6-20,000 for him. What many Polled breeders call commercial bulls should of been castrated. And the few breeders selling quality polled bulls at an affordable price have a waiting list. We can also add Gelbveigh and Balancer to the list of affordable bulls you can find around here.
 

Jessica06

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Baloney. We've been using a couple Polled Hereford bulls on our Brangus for 2 years now. No problems to speak of at all, and we've probably had 60+ calves so far out of those bulls. We weighed our spring cows after weaning last year and the herd avgd. 1050, so our cows aren't real big either. I say go for it and don't look back! Those Super Baldy calves are super good.
 

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