Time to give young­sters a go

Tasmanian Country - - ADVERTISING FEATURE -

THE push to join a large pro­por­tion of heifers to max­imise herd fer­til­ity re­quires more bulls to ser­vice them.

Pro­duc­ers are now be­ing urged to let the bulls do the se­lect­ing to max­imise fer­til­ity and con­dense calv­ing dates.

The Clu­den Newry An­gus stud be­lieves us­ing year­ling bulls is eco­nomic when join­ing large num­bers of heifers. At 12 to 18 months of age year­ling bulls are leaner and phys­i­cally ex­u­ber­ant com­pared to older bulls and re­search has shown that with cor­rect man­age­ment these bulls can keep work­ing for sev­eral years.

Us­ing bulls as year­lings can in­crease their av­er­age work­ing life by a year or more – a boost of 20 per cent, low­er­ing the cost per calf over the bull’s work­ing life.

Year­ling bulls can and will lose con­di­tion over join­ing and need ex­tra nu­tri­tion af­ter join­ing com­pared to ma­ture bulls to main­tain con­di­tion. It is also likely they will not grow out to reach their ge­netic po­ten­tial.

How­ever, the value of a bull should be mea­sured by how his prog­eny per­form, not on what he looks like. Lower body weight is one of the fac­tors of a longer work­ing life.

Clu­den Newry has been us­ing year­ling bulls for many years to back up AI pro­grams on heifers while some well­grown year­lings are used over cows. While year­ling bulls are gen­er­ally sin­gle-sire mated, it is sug­gested to use them with other bulls of sim­i­lar age.

Clu­den Newry has se­lected 25 year­ling bulls for pri­vate treaty sales this spring. They have been run in a sep­a­rate group to en­sure they can joined this spring with bulls on a high plane of nu­tri­tion likely to reach pu­berty younger.

For more de­tails call Jock Hughes on 0417 013 172.

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