Why the Programme?
The future as we see it is one of fine tuning what we
have now, eliminating those harder keeping females,
those that don't have the fat covers, those that lack
the fleshing, and looking to grow on the maternal strengths,
further grow on the carcass traits we are getting while
not losing sight of the calving ease attributes that
our herd now has.
have already experimented with line-breeding on C &
B Western and that has been successful. We are now awaiting
our first line breeding results on Paymaster, something
extremely exciting, and something that we are anxiously
awaiting the results on. If that turns out as we anticipate,
then we will go further with that programme.
got really lucky for a second time in our breeding of
Simmental when we learned from other friends out of
Canada, The Dominion Cattle Company, of an exciting
new double polled Bavarian Fleckvieh bull called Zimbo.
He has the King of Fleckvieh, Haxl, on both the top
and the bottom line of his pedigree. He has Zamutu on
the top line, and with that we hope for tremendous fat
composition in his progeny if other Zamutu bloodlines
that we have monitored are any indication to go on.
His first calves are yet to arrive.
the Canadian, South African and German genetics to produce
polled, good calving ease, easy fleshing and early finishing
cattle is our next endeavour, cattle with balanced ebv's.
how to balance those ebv's? Easy, and we have been doing
it for years now and we are surprised that more of our
fellow breeders are not doing it. Simple maths, accepting
that multiplying two negative numbers does not lead
to a positive number.
numerous low birthweight cows can be bred to higher
birthweight bulls. Cows that have negative maternal
calving ease can be bred to bulls with positive direct
calving ease and positive maternal calving ease. Cows
with low fat covers can be bred to bulls highly positive
in fat ebv's. Cows with smaller ebv's for EMA can be
bred to bulls with high EMA ebv's. Cows with low milk
can be bred to bulls with positive milk. Clearly, getting
the balance with every single mating is not possible,
and it is utterly impossible to achieve this by single
sire mating. It is our belief that the only way, the
only way, that balancing ebv's can be achieved is by
intensive use of Artificial Insemination. Ideally, we
might breed 150 cows to 150 different bulls to more
quickly balance out the ebv's of any resulting progeny,
but simply, there are not 150 bulls out there that meet
our criteria. Even with intensive use of A. I., breeding
to balance those ebv's is not a one stop shot, not possible
in one generation, but it is possible within three or
four generations. We now have cows that have what we
consider as near perfect ebv's for our operation, cows
with positive dce, positive mce, above average growth
and good carcass and fat traits.
as for ensuring we maintain and enhance the polled gene
base of our herd? Given that nearly ninety percent of
our herd is now polled, that also seems relatively easy,
though not absolutely certain. We only use homozygous
polled sires over our horned cows. We will use a heterozygous
polled bulls over double polled cows, and we will use
horned bulls only over cows that are double polled and
which have at least three generations of polling behind
them on one line.
confess that we are not quite there yet, but we can
see where we are headed. It is a fascinating game.
Hampton Downs Simmental, belief is everything, to make
the ordinary extraordinary, to take the boundary and
extend it. And we believe in our philosophy-The Power