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MKeeney
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Sun Mar 20, 2011 4:55 pm

jhudson wrote:
Mike, Yes. Thanks. Also when I said most cannot implement I was referring to those paying to hear these folks. I have heard that failure to be able to articulate is one of signs of old age and looks like may be true in my case. Jim

Very Happy Very Happy Jim,
just teasing you; good job, and taking the high road...everyone gets to wear a white hat at KC but I ; though a few borrow my loaner along Smile
I enjoy ole black hats so much, I wouldn`t give them up for money even Smile
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df



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Sun Mar 20, 2011 8:24 pm

We discuss Holistic Management but they don't read the book.

From what I can tell, Alan Nation does not have much direct experience raising cattle but does a great job of promotion. We read his book, then discuss the pros and cons. Because I am sure some subjects of his articles may not recognize themselves, I do some research of my own to find out what happens. In the case of Salatins broilers, I have raised a few myself to find the pros and cons and determine the costs. In additiion, I found out the challenges of processing ~80 birds one day. I have raised hens in a movable hoop house and helped operate a grass-based dairy. I raised Katahdin hair sheep and have a pretty good feel for the good, bad and ugly of that enterprise.

The students can also read Jim Gerrish's book, if they desire. I try to get those with any interest of working with farmers to learn about forage management.
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Sun Mar 20, 2011 9:34 pm

df wrote:
Bob H,

The difference in opinion is really not the issue. The difference is academia is not suppose to inform/"promote" something that has not been backed up with studies. That is not a problem for others who don't have to meet that criteria. For example, in this part of the country, there is a lot of discussion about mob grazing. No research has been done on it so we are left with anecdotal information from farmers and ranchers, who may or may not realize all of the interactions that make it work (or not work). And even after a study is done, the grazier with the experience can point to flaws the researcher was not able to control or was aware of.

It is also why farmers and ranchers may think of lots of things that should be researched and are left wondering why academia isn't doing anything. Well, often it is because of funding. Systems research is expensive when you are going to tie up a (part of a) farm and the animals to collect one piece of information. You also have more expense per head to pay as one person may be working with ~ 50 hd while a rancher may have one person take care of 1000 hd. They may spend the same amount of time with the cattle, but vastly different number of cattle. It certainly doesn't mean the 50 hd study is not applicable to the 1000 hd ranch. Researchers are forced to do replication to ensure the data is right.

It is also why some researchers like to collect data from ranchers, such as Dr. Barry Dunn did with the SPA data or others do with breed association databases. The data is already collected and the cost becomes computer time instead of tying up land and animal resources.

It is just as frustrating to have someone promote how linebred their herd is when in reality, it is not anymore linebred than the average of the breed they are using.

I am currently reading "Animal Breeding Plans" by Jay L. Lush with the fourth printing in 1956. It discusses the same things you and LL believe. The commercial animals should be straightbred and all crossbreds should be terminal although he does discuss several colleges trying two-breed rotations (pigs and dairy cows) with success and felt it was worth watching. Some of these females from a two-breed rotation were mated to terminal sires (pigs). He discusses inbreeding and linebreeding, promoting the "pure" offspring but questioning the wisdom of these if the financial rewards were not in place. He questioned uniformity from a marketing standpoint, stating farmers were not currently paid for uniformity.

Lush questions prepotency and hits on many things discussed on various chat boards across the internet. Some of them he shoots full of holes, others he says happens but is blown up beyond what breeders believe and still others he discusses why they should be done.

Now this book was written by a highly respected man who collected this information in the early 1900s. What are we to believe when other highly respected scientists such as Cundiff and Gregory, working with 8,000 head of cattle of multiple breeds at MARC in the mid- to late-1900s, determines other breeding programs are acceptable? Who should we believe? Certainly I don't want to discount your success and experience as it is invaluable. On the other hand, there is research that contradicts these methods.

One point I forgot to mention is Lush does discussed the balance between financial rewards and the actual breeding program. He discusses how genetic defects might cripple a breeding program and how many breeders use outcrosses to avoid the possibility of genetic defects. Keep in mind the dwarfism was top of mind in the 1940s and 1950s and peaked in the Herefords in the early 1950s. However, his view was that seedstock should be linebred and any outcross animals might be used for display and promotion purposes, yet should be considered market animals and not used as breeding stock. Very interesting; I wonder what he would say of current breeding programs if he had all the data we have today Smile And it seems to me that the display of the outcross animal would be unethical if the same results were not available to the farmer.

I hope that clears up why I ask the questions I ask and why I sometimes want to say "BS" but don't. You have a lot of experience I don't (although I am not as young and inexperienced as you might think Wink ) and I have had some of the best teachers in this field.




between the lines above for me is the bottom line...despite all the data, all the science, all the research, and all the cattle and related changes...human nature has not changed since the beginning of time, and no methodology can be shown soooo superior economically, that it dominates as the one breeding model...
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Bob H



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:19 pm

df
I have had a lifetime of experience; my father had black bally cows in the 60's. What I talk about is that when he started in 1936 what you bought were linebred cattle from any breeder because there was no mass transportation of cattle, a fellow used the bulls he purchased for 10 years or more and lived isolated. When you purchased seed stock from him the first time, you received heterosis, if you went back and purchased from the same fellow your cattle started to look allot like his. (line breeding) From the end of the 60's until now if you use mainstream seed stock you are receiving a mongrelized form of heterosis that has no predictability only a crapshoot of gene pools. The reason is A.I. and mass transportation. The economy has also become so fast that most breeders don't have enough backing or intestinal fortitude to stay the course of what they sell to see if it is economical or fad and expect the commercial cattleman to prove it for them. If some of those commercial cattlemen go broke, the seedstock breeders don't have any skin in the game. With that said I don't believe that most seedstock breeders are sustainable for the long term, just short term profiteers.

The problem with most academia in my opinion is that they don’t have true skin in the game, If they were required to be profitable for 30 years before they began to teach or research the results would be easier to believe. In a capitalist society you only have a short time to be unprofitable before you change occupations.

About you and I having a different perspective, I thought that you probably were not a commercial cattleman. My suggestion to you is borrow a million dollars invest in what you believe and let's see the result's in 20 years. As they say in Australia good luck mate.
study
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RobertMac



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 12:22 am

df, have you taught Bonsma or Voisin?
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df



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 7:42 am

No I have not.
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 7:56 am

Bob H,

Was your dad profitable prior to 1960? And if so, why did he crossbreed and make black baldies? How much ROI do you think the ranch produced prior to crossbreeding? And after?
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RobertMac



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:09 pm

Have you ever considered exposing your students to them? I realize it would be difficult for Dr. Bonsma considering the lack of available books.
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df



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 4:30 pm

No, because the genetic evaluation we have today is repeatable and structured in that BW are taken within 24 hrs, WW are taken at 205 days, YW are taken at 365 days (plus or minus). I can weigh a calf and you can weigh the same calf and we should get similar weights. However, you can explain and show pictures of different animals and claim some endocrine function is responsible (which, of course, the endocrine system is responsible for basically everything), yet even after some training, most people will not be able to duplicate what you think you see. Case in point; MKeeney thinks JimL's bull looks like Esso. I say no way. We have both been on judging teams and "trained". However, we don't see those bulls the same.

The second reason is that I believe we have made progress in science. If we haven't, then billions of dollars have been wasted in any effort to improve the lives of people and animals. Thus, I am ok with the results published by Cundiff, Gregory, Jenkins and Ferrell on their work at MARC. I believe they expanded our knowledge considerably. Others think all of the MARC data is flawed and prefer the work of Lush and Wright which is 75-100 years old.

Bonsma's work was not found to be repeatable. It might have some value but I won't spend any time on it when I can't repeat his work. If it can't be repeated, then the original results should be questioned.

I would think the data from Gerrish should be as good or better than Viosin's. I would hope the work by Kallenbach will be very valuable as well. I have read Viosin's book; I don't know that I gained much from it compared to reading some of Gerrish's work, which was on fescue, basically in my environment.
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:22 pm

df wrote:
No, because the genetic evaluation we have today is repeatable and structured in that BW are taken within 24 hrs, WW are taken at 205 days, YW are taken at 365 days (plus or minus). I can weigh a calf and you can weigh the same calf and we should get similar weights. However, you can explain and show pictures of different animals and claim some endocrine function is responsible (which, of course, the endocrine system is responsible for basically everything), yet even after some training, most people will not be able to duplicate what you think you see. Case in point; MKeeney thinks JimL's bull looks like Esso. I say no way. We have both been on judging teams and "trained". However, we don't see those bulls the same.

I guess you best explain the differing characteristics of the two...muscle, overall conformation, masculinity...I don`t clkaim anything; here`s a type I like, I`ve made a living with it, you might too...if you need more, there`s lots of places to go...among them, where the cattle are supported with tax dollars or tax breaks..

The second reason is that I believe we have made progress in science. If we haven't, then billions of dollars have been wasted in any effort to improve the lives of people and animals. Thus, I am ok with the results published by Cundiff, Gregory, Jenkins and Ferrell on their work at MARC. I believe they expanded our knowledge considerably. Others think all of the MARC data is flawed and prefer the work of Lush and Wright which is 75-100 years old.

billions of dollars may very well have been wasted as far as cattle breeding is concerned...

Bonsma's work was not found to be repeatable. It might have some value but I won't spend any time on it when I can't repeat his work. If it can't be repeated, then the original results should be questioned.

By a group of graduate students no less; not cattle breeders...surprise, surprise!! I think you best start citing YOUR references df...


I would think the data from Gerrish should be as good or better than Viosin's. I would hope the work by Kallenbach will be very valuable as well. I have read Viosin's book; I don't know that I gained much from it compared to reading some of Gerrish's work, which was on fescue, basically in my environment.

Gerrish is a forage man...and now, considering the clan he has taken up with to feather his nest, I wouldn`t trust his forage expertise too far...
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Bob H



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:24 pm

df my father was born in 1922 was orphaned in 1933 and raised himself with the help of an uncle. He had a small herd of angus cow's put together by 1943 when he was drafted had to sell in 10 days and get on with life started over in spring of 1946. Your question about was he profitable before 1960 is interesting he has always placed sustainability way above short term profiability. The reason for the bb cows was an expeiment in cross-breeding. At that time you had to work fairly hard at buying junk genetics. If you used average cattle they stayed average. It was always fasinating to me that I could not reproduce the great angus cow's that we had as I was growing up, never a bad udder, never a bad mother, always bred we just took it for granite. I am sure that there were exceptions but not many. Then came the 70's Mass A.I. and mass transit of genepools and crossing of same and here we are today. With the help of Larry Leonhardt I have been able to unscramble what happened to our good black cow's and can reproduce them with out much input cost's and quite frequently. We are now going to use these factory's to produce a product of higher quality that will return more profit without any more input cost's. yes it is a terminal cross. We will continue to let our cowherd reproduce themselves for the maternal side.
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df



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:35 pm

MKeeney wrote:
df wrote:
No, because the genetic evaluation we have today is repeatable and structured in that BW are taken within 24 hrs, WW are taken at 205 days, YW are taken at 365 days (plus or minus). I can weigh a calf and you can weigh the same calf and we should get similar weights. However, you can explain and show pictures of different animals and claim some endocrine function is responsible (which, of course, the endocrine system is responsible for basically everything), yet even after some training, most people will not be able to duplicate what you think you see. Case in point; MKeeney thinks JimL's bull looks like Esso. I say no way. We have both been on judging teams and "trained". However, we don't see those bulls the same.

I guess you best explain the differing characteristics of the two...muscle, overall conformation, masculinity...I don`t clkaim anything; here`s a type I like, I`ve made a living with it, you might too...if you need more, there`s lots of places to go...among them, where the cattle are supported with tax dollars or tax breaks..

The second reason is that I believe we have made progress in science. If we haven't, then billions of dollars have been wasted in any effort to improve the lives of people and animals. Thus, I am ok with the results published by Cundiff, Gregory, Jenkins and Ferrell on their work at MARC. I believe they expanded our knowledge considerably. Others think all of the MARC data is flawed and prefer the work of Lush and Wright which is 75-100 years old.

billions of dollars may very well have been wasted as far as cattle breeding is concerned...

Bonsma's work was not found to be repeatable. It might have some value but I won't spend any time on it when I can't repeat his work. If it can't be repeated, then the original results should be questioned.

By a group of graduate students no less; not cattle breeders...surprise, surprise!! I think you best start citing YOUR references df...


I would think the data from Gerrish should be as good or better than Viosin's. I would hope the work by Kallenbach will be very valuable as well. I have read Viosin's book; I don't know that I gained much from it compared to reading some of Gerrish's work, which was on fescue, basically in my environment.

Gerrish is a forage man...and now, considering the clan he has taken up with to feather his nest, I wouldn`t trust his forage expertise too far...

http://www.bonsmara.co.za/breedstandards.php

It appears the "scientific" method of breeding includes taking weights as well as visual appraisal. Does anybody know what the current breed standards are for Bonsmara?

Have you seen Jim Gerrish write anything that you disagree with or is it just that it appears in the SGF?
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:37 pm

Bob H wrote:
df my father was born in 1922 was orphaned in 1933 and raised himself with the help of an uncle. He had a small herd of angus cow's put together by 1943 when he was drafted had to sell in 10 days and get on with life started over in spring of 1946. Your question about was he profitable before 1960 is interesting he has always placed sustainability way above short term profiability. The reason for the bb cows was an expeiment in cross-breeding. At that time you had to work fairly hard at buying junk genetics. If you used average cattle they stayed average. It was always fasinating to me that I could not reproduce the great angus cow's that we had as I was growing up, never a bad udder, never a bad mother, always bred we just took it for granite. I am sure that there were exceptions but not many. Then came the 70's Mass A.I. and mass transit of genepools and crossing of same and here we are today. With the help of Larry Leonhardt I have been able to unscramble what happened to our good black cow's and can reproduce them with out much input cost's and quite frequently. We are now going to use these factory's to produce a product of higher quality that will return more profit without any more input cost's. yes it is a terminal cross. We will continue to let our cowherd reproduce themselves for the maternal side.

Just wondering how the sustainable, profitable cowherd declined.
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df



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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:40 pm

http://www.bonsmara.co.za/rejectioncodes.php

Found the rejection codes. MKeeney, were you taught any of these when you went to college?
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:15 pm

df wrote:
http://www.bonsmara.co.za/rejectioncodes.php

Found the rejection codes. MKeeney, were you taught any of these when you went to college?
one point at a time... I don`t know a single cattle producer that does not take weights
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:39 pm

df wrote:
http://www.bonsmara.co.za/rejectioncodes.php

Found the rejection codes. MKeeney, were you taught any of these when you went to college?

I seemed to have been taught most all of them before I went to college...
on Gerrish, I have never seen him comment on genetics; which would include refute the miracle recommendations of the crowd he keeps company with...
on Cundiff and Gregory...what famous herd were they most likely to give testimonials for? how did optimum mainstrean crossing work out anyway?

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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:45 pm

df wrote:
http://www.bonsmara.co.za/rejectioncodes.php

Found the rejection codes. MKeeney, were you taught any of these when you went to college?

An evaluation of visual assessment for fertility in Brahman cross cows using the Bonsma technique

G. Fordyce, N.J. Cooper


Received 21 June 1994; accepted 18 November 1994.

Abstract
A technique of visual assessment of cattle for reproductive efficiency, described by Professor Jan Bonsma of South Africa, was evaluated in two well-managed large herds of to Brahman cross heifers and cows located in the dry tropics of north Australia. Individual lifetime performance records were available for all animals. Experienced cattlemen carried out the assessments. Higher scores were previously claimed to indicate higher fertility.

The technique had high repeatability (0.7) and was quickly learned by the assessors. Scores from visual assessment had no useful predictive value for either heifer or cow fertility or for growth rate up to 27 mo of age, although 2.5-yr-old heifers which were scored as subfertile matured into 4% smaller cows than heifers which had scored higher. Scores decreased as fatness increased (P < 0.05).

Some biases in visual assessment occurred. Lactating cows scored higher than nonlactating cows (P < 0.05), independently of their reproductive record. Red and grey cows scored higher than brindle and black/brown cows (P < 0.05). Bonsma scores were not influenced by the percentage of Brahman in the genotype. Significant, but apparently random, age effects on scores also occurred.

It was concluded that the visual assessment criteria described by Bonsma were of no practical value in assessing potential productivity of breeding animals in well-managed Brahman cross cattle in the dry tropics.

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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:52 pm

df wrote:
Bonsma's work was not found to be repeatable.
Could you expand on this?

Mike, some of us take our weights a little unorthodox...I have found that some calves that might not be acceptable to some at weaning and yearling, catch up at 24 month and hang a profitable carcass.
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:04 pm

RobertMac wrote:
df wrote:
Bonsma's work was not found to be repeatable.
Could you expand on this?

Mike, some of us take our weights a little unorthodox...I have found that some calves that might not be acceptable to some at weaning and yearling, catch up at 24 month and hang a profitable carcass.

repeatable and wrong are two different things...


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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:14 pm

df
I am not sure of the question but will answer about my father. He has been as successful as he deemed necessary He is now 88 years old and still owns a few cows. He has killed every big game animal in North America without a guide. He has a 15 year old son yes my half brother. As far as I know has never been unprofitable in any year. We turned in the mid to late 70's to purchasing 4 year old bred cows that were cross-bred because we could not figure out what had happened to the genetics from the past and had to get on with business. We tried several times after that to use some of the genetics of the day and were sadly disappointed. We have been in the commercial cattle business continually since 1946 it has been a huge breath of fresh air to finally get back those good average Angus cow's of my youth.
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:07 pm

http://www.rccgenes.com/

click on Bulls
click on loyal customers

I kinda like these bulls.
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:14 pm

Bob H wrote:
df
I am not sure of the question but will answer about my father. He has been as successful as he deemed necessary He is now 88 years old and still owns a few cows. He has killed every big game animal in North America without a guide. He has a 15 year old son yes my half brother. As far as I know has never been unprofitable in any year. We turned in the mid to late 70's to purchasing 4 year old bred cows that were cross-bred because we could not figure out what had happened to the genetics from the past and had to get on with business. We tried several times after that to use some of the genetics of the day and were sadly disappointed. We have been in the commercial cattle business continually since 1946 it has been a huge breath of fresh air to finally get back those good average Angus cow's of my youth.

Thanks Bob, the story continues to clarify where you are coming from. So if I have this right, you had really good straightbred Angus until the mid-1970's but then started buying crossbred cows. While I would guess some of them were ok, most were not working as they were too big, had too much milk, bad udders, etc and were less functional compared to the straightbred Angus. The Angus you used to improve the function were no better than what you had in the crossbreds and certainly not as good as the Angus from the 1950s and 1960's. LL was able to solve the problem because his Angus truely are functional and fit your environment.

I don't know if I have the whole thing right so please correct me if that doesn't do the story justice.
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:16 pm

MKeeney wrote:
RobertMac wrote:
df wrote:
Bonsma's work was not found to be repeatable.
Could you expand on this?

Mike, some of us take our weights a little unorthodox...I have found that some calves that might not be acceptable to some at weaning and yearling, catch up at 24 month and hang a profitable carcass.

repeatable and wrong are two different things...



My bad. Surprised
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:22 pm

df wrote:
MKeeney wrote:
RobertMac wrote:
df wrote:
Bonsma's work was not found to be repeatable.
Could you expand on this?

Mike, some of us take our weights a little unorthodox...I have found that some calves that might not be acceptable to some at weaning and yearling, catch up at 24 month and hang a profitable carcass.

repeatable and wrong are two different things...



My bad. Surprised
df, you are not wrong, but quite repeatable Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Breeding Program   Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:25 pm

df wrote:
http://www.rccgenes.com/

click on Bulls
click on loyal customers

I kinda like these bulls.
first page...bad science...scrotal =dau fertility
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