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Anonymous

We just started our little (for now) farm 6 months ago. We have 2 cows, 2 heifers and a bull calf (just a few days old). They are herrefords but not registered or anything.

We're trying to decide if we should shoot for a high quality herreford herd or to breed with another breed, say angus, to get the beef quality. We'd like some input on either side. Thanx.

Lisa

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Anonymous

> We just started our little (for
> now) farm 6 months ago. We have 2
> cows, 2 heifers and a bull calf
> (just a few days old). They are
> herrefords but not registered or
> anything.

> We're trying to decide if we
> should shoot for a high quality
> herreford herd or to breed with
> another breed, say angus, to get
> the beef quality. We'd like some
> input on either side. Thanx.

> Lisa

First concern is to find a bull with good, low-birthweight epd's for the two heifers. The breed is not that important - the history of the bull is vital - you want live calves and live moms when those heifers have their first calves.

As for beef quality, both hereford and angus have good reputations for beef quality.

If you are thinking of selling your calf crop, you may want to go with a cross so you will have bally (or baldy) calves - whiteface calves - they tend to go for more at the sale.

Rafter L Murray Greys
 
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Anonymous

Do you want to sell all the calves at weaning as feeder calves, or do you want to produce "seed stock" or replacements? If you can figure out your "goal", you can determine what you need to do to get there.

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Anonymous

Thank you both. What we want to do is to raise beef to sell. We're debating on keeping steers the 2 years and auctioning off what we can't "sell" ourselves as locker beef at that time or getting people to committ to a certain ammt. and sell them as weanlings. We want to build up our herd with our females as much as possible. I know black goes well at auction but what I don' t know is how the "purebred" goes. I've been told it's worth my time and effort to register our herd as soon as we are able and to go the purebreed route but I've been told that nobody cares about a mix breed at auction either.

So what I'm wondering is: what's the demand? A high quality hereford or a good mix breed beef cow? What would net us more at auction? We've even considered keeping some good bull calves (if we stick with quality herefords) and raise our own bull and cycle a new bull every few years.

* sidenote * As for breeding them this year - the 2 just calved within the last 3 weeks and the older heifer still isn't as old as we'd like - 13 months and quite small still. If she dosen't grow much by the spring we'll sell her for another one. We want them to calve Feb. to April and we've passed that window already. So we're planing on waiting till next year and buying another couple of pregnant cows next spring. We have a lot to do to this place to get it going well so we feel like we can afford to wait to breed them for this year only.

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Anonymous

Lisa,

If you are just starting out and are looking to raise animals to sell at your local auction, my suggestion would be to go with raising crossbreds, at least to get started. We have researched this question ourselves and what we have found is that unless you have a lot of money ($2000 +) plus per cow and ($4,000 +) for the bull that will allow you to purchase offspring of the current "hot" bloodlines you will have a hard time getting much more than slaughter prices for your purebreds especially if you are only selling a few non AI sired calves at auction. By starting with producing good quality crossbreds, you will have a ready market for you calves and will gain the added advantages of heterosis (also you will not have to spend your money on registerations that the market will not pay extra for). At a later time when the local beef producers (who will most likely be the ones to purchase your breeding stock) know that you produce healthy stock and you have developed facilities, you can then start breeding up to a purebred herd (keeping higher and higher percentage calves of a particular breed) either using a top of the line purebred bull or better yet by using semen from the best bulls in the breed. This is just my opinion but hope this helps you in your decision.

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Anonymous

Lisa, I, too would suggest you start with the crossbred cattle until you get your feet on the ground. Selling your animals as "freezer beef" is probably the most profitable way to go, but you do have to deal with bounced checks and complaints. And I understand that a good processor is one of the most important parts of satisfying your customers. If you're going to sell the steers at the auction, a good Angus bull on those Hereford cows will get the black baldies Linda mentioned and they are quite popular. A word of caution, though, while you can "breed up" to purebred status on a lot of breeds, neither Hereford nor Angus allow that. The purebred business is more demanding than the commercial business. You need to weigh each calf at birth, report their weaning and yearling weights, etc. If you want to get paid for your time and trouble, AI is a must in the Angus purebred business (unless you can buy a $100,000 bull). Learn about EPDs before you go buy a bull to use on those heifers. Or consider having them AI-ed to an easy calving bull. Good luck..

> We just started our little (for
> now) farm 6 months ago. We have 2
> cows, 2 heifers and a bull calf
> (just a few days old). They are
> herrefords but not registered or
> anything.

> We're trying to decide if we
> should shoot for a high quality
> herreford herd or to breed with
> another breed, say angus, to get
> the beef quality. We'd like some
> input on either side. Thanx.

> Lisa

[email protected]
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Thank you again. This is where I was leaning but I don't want to make a hasty decision either. Sounds like the purebred route is more time consuming than I had thought and with our family of 7 - well - I'm just not sure we'd have that time for maybe another 10 years or so. Thanx again!

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Anonymous

> If these aren't registered stock then most definitely breed them Angus to get black baldie calves. These are your most merchandisable prospect.We just started our little (for
> now) farm 6 months ago. We have 2
> cows, 2 heifers and a bull calf
> (just a few days old). They are
> Herefords but not registered or
> anything.

> We're trying to decide if we
> should shoot for a high quality
> herreford herd or to breed with
> another breed, say angus, to get
> the beef quality. We'd like some
> input on either side. Thanx.

> Lisa

[email protected]
 

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