Top An­gus breed­ers recog­nised

Countryman - - LIVESTOCK - Bob Gar­nant

High-achiev­ing An­gus cat­tle pro­duc­tion was awarded at the WA An­gus So­ci­ety’s an­nual gen­eral meet­ing at Clare­mont last week.

So­ci­ety chair­man Tony Sud­low pre­sented the cov­eted Strath­tay Tro­phy to Esper­ance breed­ers Wes and Fran Gra­ham, who run a 2000-head fe­male herd and sup­ply calves into the Coles Finest pro­gram.

“An­gus pro­duc­tion for me be­gan in the 1970s and to­day we aim for a 300kg dressed weight into a pre­mium mar­ket,” Mr Gra­ham said.

“Our calves are sent to the Ky­lagh feed­lot at Tam­min from win­ter to early spring and feed­back is all good.

“We sup­ply 20 per cent of the Coles con­tract. Esper­ance is ideal for cat­tle pro­duc­tion, with mild sum­mers and good rain­fall.”

Mr Gra­ham said he bought 12 bulls ev­ery year on vis­ual cues and es­ti­mated breed­ing val­ues.

“Since sup­ply­ing the feed­lot, my cri­te­ria is high-growth, bal­anced car­case fig­ures, but mostly I have to see calves on the ground,” he said.

Long-time com­mit­tee mem­ber John Young pre­sented three 50year recog­ni­tion awards. He said for­mer Wil­son Downs stud prin­ci­pals John and Beth McKay were in­stru­men­tal in bring­ing some of the best ge­net­ics into WA dur­ing their ac­tive years in the in­dus­try.

Mr McKay said he served as chair­man and on the fed­eral coun­cil over the years. “One of the high­lights of my An­gus ca­reer was breed­ing Wil­son Downs Zenith, a bull with parent­age out of New Zealand and sold back to that coun­try for $40,000 in 1981,” he said.

Award re­cip­i­ent Sam Col­lard re­called how An­gus changed his pro­duc­tion from 65 per cent calv­ing to 98 per cent.

“We were im­pressed with An­gus cat­tle at first sight and bought a pen of un­reg­is­tered Sun­ny­dale fe­males,” he said.

“Now my son Mike is run­ning our War­ringah stud herd.”

Ac­cept­ing an award on be­half of Peter Mackie, Fiona Mackie said her fa­ther was con­tin­u­ing his An­gus pro­duc­tion with value-adding feed­lot fin­ish­ing.

Mr Sud­low said his chair­man­ship term had many high­lights, par­tic­u­larly Lew Smits’ re­tire­ment din­ner gath­er­ing.

In­com­ing chair­man Mark Hat­tingh said he was keen to work with An­gus breed­ers and as­sist in im­prov­ing the ge­net­ics in pur­suit of more juicy An­gus steaks on the ta­ble of WA and over­sees con­sumers.

He will be as­sisted by in­com­ing vice-chair­woman Liz Sud­low.

Pic­tures: Bob Gar­nant

WA An­gus So­ci­ety award re­cip­i­ents Beth and John McKay, for­merly of Wil­son Downs stud, GP Mackie & Co di­rec­tor Fiona Mackie, ac­cept­ing the award on be­half of her fa­ther, and Lana, Sam and Michael Col­lard, of War­ringah stud, Badgin­garra.

In­com­ing WA An­gus So­ci­ety chair­man Mark Hat­tingh, of Red­hat stud, Wan­na­mal, out­go­ing chair­man Tony Sud­low, of Ka­pari An­gus stud, Northamp­ton, and in­com­ing vice-chair­woman Liz Sud­low.

Strath­tay Tro­phy re­cip­i­ents Fran and Wes Gra­ham, of Esper­ance.

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