Keeney`s Corner

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 Reflections Condensed

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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Tue Jul 15, 2014 3:46 pm

written by Larry 2 Jun 2011

Spring has been very slow in coming and like many others around here, we're about 3 weeks behind normal in getting our crops in.   During these days of flooding rivers and much below normal temps, there are many more important short term things to think about than arguing about long term  breeding philosophies..... but when Mike started the "closebred nubbins" topic with an animal I bred,  this post is my reaction since I don't consider that 850# yearling bull calf to be a "nubbin" altho many of the mainstream performance breeders may consider him to be one  : )  The last comments under my reflections were when DF and Mike debated the low heritability of fertility in mice....and of course while fertility/reproduction rate is an economic prerequisite to the cowman, it matters little to the feeder, packer or the debates go on while the mainstream seems bent on trying to breed and market one best type to serve all segments....which Dylan described as "jack of all and master of none".

MKeeney wrote:
Doesn`t almost everyone think in terms of the best production stock becoming the parent stock of the next generation?
Dylan wrote:
Mike an exceptionaly simple concept, yet so foriegn to the predominant breeding paradigm. It has taken me a while to grasp. The hard part is letting go of habitual engrained ideas/paradigms.  
MKeeney responded:
Dylan, simple but very difficult for me...we like parents to be big stout ears of corn, not little nubbins...I gotta get some nubbins pictured soon to get folks to the proper prospective by Red Lodge gathering time...

Mean Spirit wrote:
So if an inbred nubbin whose toes are a little long produces an inbred 400 lb calf every 15 months, and those little calves go on to produce wonderful smokey babies, she's a successful parent stock cow nubbin. Even though she is almost certainly not profitable as a beef producer.    I swear, this is a hard story to tell.   Re: cull vs unknown. In an inbred herd, what's the difference between a cull a seedstock?
Bootheel wrote:
No doubt we will always have nubbins, but, what percentage of them are culls, no accounts......ah the real question, maybe?.......

MKeeney responded:
what if this cow was the grandma...twice?

MS, this isn't such a hard story to tell, genetic reality is a much harder story to sell Smile     As MK said, most people measure the parent stock and expect what they see is what they'll get.   I don't know what people's expectations will be by Red Lodge and Two Dot gathering time but firstly, I want to clarify that the TruLine concept is not about producing or marketing "inbred nubbins" who "produce a 400 lb. calf every 15 months" .    

It is more about how we need to accept the natural form that follows FUNCTIONAL selection for better utilization;  the end objective of the concept is how we need many different distinct types;  and why Wright said a successful breeder establishs a type by isolating and fixing a useful functional type with careful selection and close breeding, bringing inferior stock up by consistent use of PREPOTENT sires of the SAME TYPE.     It is more about breeding sustainable functional CERTIFIED strains rather than unsustainable REGISTERED multiple outcrosses or COMPOSITE hybrids    It is about breeders using all available tools including inbreeding to IDENTIFY and improve the elite and innovative parent stock to ensure the key traits that commercial producers need are fixed (instilled) in order to more assuredly produce an optimal or more profitable hybrid within an environment.  

It is about taking advantage of natural trait antagonisms rather than suffering from them.    In this regard Dylan wrote an excellent post on the 5barx website May 30 under the topic "When will average be good enough".   The term "average" is a great misnomer in this business often used to describe things for comparative purposes .....It's like asking "when will normal be preferred over the abnormal" : )

I want to reiterate that the basic objective of harnessing hybrid power to improve production is simple but understandably it is not a quick and easy task.    It is a formidable proposition which requires many generations and intimate breeder familiarity with the germ plasm pools to fix (instill) key traits.    To be successful, breeders must not only make sure genes that improve a given trait don't inadvertently cause a negative response or reaction that weakens another important trait, they must also ensure that the results can be replicated over many years.

I do  like the heading of the Pinebank home page - "There is no end to the improvement in anything biological. It will slow down, but it will go on."  I was disappointed that there were no comments in response to the pictures I posted of the Waigroup cattle.    Too many of us seem to be critical of what certain types of cattle can't do rather than utilize them for what they can do.....the challenges of life would be rather boring if we all agreed with each other. : )    Many years ago I grew weary of all the common debates over this or that mortal individual bull or I moved beyond that to the immortality of population genetics as practiced by Gavin with the Waigroup objectives to improve that closed population of cattle, allowing Nature to determine the type that best converted the NZ grass to beef..

In his last post, Gavin mentions how complex biological structures are thought to be controlled by clusters of many genes.... and geneticists tell us there is only so much room on a chromosome and when we try to add more favorable genes, I think about how often have we observed that these favorable genes must be linked on the chromosome to negative genes for other essential traits.   Therein lies our dilemma, we observe these exceptional individuals and as MK says, we use the best producers as the parent stock of the next generation but we all know we don't live happily ever after.    We get that random half of the genotype and we sort, and sort, and sort.   I've often wondered how can we ever cause that preferred random half to be more consistent if we keep mating/selecting those cattle with the most expected progeny differences......and in reality if improving the consistency of a type is not the objective, there is no real economic purpose to improve "purity" in parent stock......registered so called "purebred multipliers"  mating everyone's bulls to everyone's daughters are just fooling themselves along with many of their customers on down the line.

When we enter the world of population genetics beyond any exceptional individual, as the genes wage these invisible battles for predominance, as in all wars, there seems to be a cost to selection for each trait and that cost impacts how much progress we can make in a selection direction.   From these observations, I formed the opinion that too much of a good thing often becomes detrimental disrupting our good intentions which ultimately leads to the continuous cycles of correctional changes that we have observed over time in this industry.....or what some might call genetic compromises seeking to restore an overall "balance"....... or what others might call stagnation of the quantitative traits with emphasis on improving the qualitative or other economic traits deemed more overall improvement is painfully slow.   While some industry figures suggest there has been a 20% increase in cow size since 1990, Oldtimer posted the KSU article which warned of  creeping stocking rates which may or may not offset the increased production on a given amount of resources......thus it is that we go round and round searching for the next quick miracle bull or cow.  

While DF insists on specific academic research data, what  better proof do we have than to learn from the consequences of industrywide historical selection via the evaluation of the entire population trends.   The sire summaries offer genetic trends from extreme selecton for change, yet the data suggests the cowman has made little economic progress between input and output over the long term.    To alleviate some of his woes, I do believe the TruLine concept does offer some solutions if properly applied to address these tradeoffs.    For example, Gavin has told us that his production consists of bulls, beef and cull cows, selling his cull cows for slaughter rather than to others for breeding purposes.    As we move on, I am trying to learn from Gavin's unique experiences how to get a better genetic handle on the hidden costs of "maintaining a lactating cow herd that routinely weans 65% of the cow weight in calf."  This feat was in evidence when I posted Leroy's pictures of the Waigroup cows nursing their calves, so I wondered if the heifer calf replacements are inititially selected with the same criteria as the next generation of replacement bull calves, and I wondered what the hidden or underlying costs might actually be.    

When something sounds too good to be totally true without costs, to reaffirm the economic need for a TruLine concept, from strictly a genetic distribution standpoint rather than any criticism,  I would be very interested in seeing the phenotypic pictures of the heifer calf replacements that didn't make the standards of the Waigroup cow herds, especially those two heifer progeny of the outliner cow 72/74 who failed to conceive as yearlings and were Gavin stated "how good was this cow".     It was no surprise when Gavin described the 72/74 cow's type to me, and I laughed in agreement with Bootheel when he recently posted "..... If you think buying lean, mean, breeding machine, maternal bulls is a difficult task, just go and try to find some boars. Surely there is a lesson to be learned in there somewhere, for someone, if the blinders of more can be pulled to the side for just a moment."  

For a moment, I thought about Jack's story of his so descrobed "tail end heifers" who produced his highest selling bulls, I thought of all my own many disappointing experiences and was reminded how the old timers have all told me their biggest heifer calves seldom made the most productive cows, and how in my beginning days the top show heifers seldom made a productive cow while blaming it on too much fat in the udder when actually it was the selection for the type of heifers that had a predisposition to fatten, a type that was the fashion of the day for the end market.    Doesn't anyone ever wonder about the real reasons why these kind of events happen beyond random chance ?

The moderate work and wear cow that Mike pictured above would not be the type that everyone would prefer and I wonder if she would be a survivor of the standards of the Waigroup Angus herd.?    When we discuss the differences between "inbred nubbins" and/or close breeding, based on my breeding experiences I have come to believe that Nature turns genes on and off in order to sustain variation for adaptabilty to ensure a survival of the fittest, therefore, we cannot properly measure any progress made by more intense closebreeding until any  suppressed genes are reactivated.  

Since Mike posted the picture of the above cow with my brand on her hip, without going into all the intricate genetic values,  I would like to use this example of establishing a type where we determine what is the most fit for our own purpose whenever any of us can finally decide when "enough is good enough"...... what I would rather call stabilizing or FIXING CERTAIN TRAITS by reducing the variables.  In this regard, I believe an excerpt from the 1926 article on "Permanency in Stock Breeding"  is applicable here.... previously posted on page 23, Dec 30, 2010  of my reflections.

n]]"The business of stock breeding in America lacks stability and permanency.   Few farms are the homes of a single breed throughout many succeeding generations.  The typical livestock owner in this country is too fickle in his breed affilliations to be strongly bound to any one.   He fails to study deeply into pedigrees, and to set his heart on fundamental accomplishment with particular blood-lines.   Success in stock breeding is NOT attained in a season.   While spectacular results may appear sporadically, to be established with sufficient certaintity to justify the application to a herd-owner of that greatly desired title "breeder" requires that enough generations shall be produced and considered to determine that the qualities sought ARE DEFINITELY FIXED......through an intelligent, continued study of a particular family and through an uninterrupted services of matings with definite objects and ideals in mind.......They are permanent sound anchorages for beginners, and stabilizers for the whole industry."[/b]

Reducing variables.....when Mike mentions "inbred corn nubbins", the number of generations it takes plant  breeders to fix certain traits in its' parent lines has been reduced from about 8 to 2 with the latest DNA technology of mapping the entire genome.     The picture of the above cow is the newly freshened 63/77 cow Joe Dunkum recently purchased from me.....she was born on 3/31/03 and represents the 11th generation of one of the cow families in my herd, a herd closed to outside females since 1971.   This particular cow is a member of my "63" cow family that descends from the original purchased cow born on 1/12/68, among the last group I purchased on an individual basis in 1971.   The pictured cow is not necessarily a great cow NOR do I consider her a "closebred nubbin", Joe simply wants cattle that he can enjoy raising with pride without alot of problems and seeks no aspirations for extraordinary monetary rewards.    

When I decided to change my selection emphasis from increasing performance to that of establishing a type in 1979, from that date forward there have been 627 female descendants born in the Shoshone herd from the original cow #63 over a period of 31 years to the present date.....from which I have gained intimate familiarity with their characteristics.   For those who think I'm breeding "blue sky" cattle without any public registration papers or records, please know the original cow's AAA"numbers" are as follows  - linking her direct descendants in chronological order to the 63/77 cow pictured.    I have also gathered structured carcass evaluation of the nucleus of the bulls used to determine which type has the higher beef quality for complementarity in hybrid production systems, an inherent value to be preserved which contributes to the popularity of the Angus cow without going to extremes which would likely disrupt her basic maternal function.

Cow Tag #63, born 1/12/68 - has an AAA  $W value of 1.90
Production Maternal
BW..... -3.2
WW.... -16
YW..... -23
SC..... +.18
CEM..... +0
Milk..... +3

Cow Tag #E63, born 3/7/74
Cow Tag #GE63, born 1/27/76
Cow Tag #63/01, born 3/19/79 = the beginning of my new direction to establish a preferred type
Cow Tag #63/11, born 3/27/81
Cow Tag #63/20, born 3/20/83
Cow Tag #63/33, born 3/3/85
Cow Tag #63/57, born 5/28/88 = this cow sold to Monte Howry in 2000 and lived to be about 20 years old
Cow Tag #63/12, born 3/19/93
Cow Tag #63/76, born 3/20/00 = the last cow born that has AAA interim number values available with a $W of 19.92

BW..... +2.1
WW....  23
YW.....  30
CEM..... +7
Milk..... +8

Cow Tag #63/77, born 3/31/03 = the pictured cow has no official AAA "numbers" since I began using multiple close bred sires of similar geno types, consequently the "numbers" have not changed significantly over the last several generations.   From the initial base cow, the measured economic numbers say on average I exchanged about $14.66 in increased $EN requirements to gain about $18.00 in $W, an insignificant amount over a period of about 40 years, the hidden significant improvement lies in the unmeasured essential key traits that commercial producers need.   Hopefully some day DNA technology will reduce the number of generations required to fix these improved key traits by the absence of the variables..

Joe Dunkum previously bought the 63/10 cow (Encore's dam) from me as a 10 year old cow along with the 63/54 and 63/77 cows (both Encore daus. born in 1988)  back in 1991, and I hope Joe enjoys the virtues of this more recent model, the newer 2003 model 63/77 cow.    The bull calf Joe also purchased, the 850# yearling Mike pictured to begin his topic of "close bred nubbins",  is out of a dau of the 2003 son of the 1996 63/74 cow, also the sire of the cow #A724 that Craig Hilman selected for his objectives.     Close breeding is a double edged sword and I must admit that the topic "closebred nubbins" is giving me an inferiority complex, I surely would feel much more at ease if Mike would've entitled the topic "close bred nubbins AND NUGGETS' : )     While the Jim L's of the mainstream world (who measure success by arbitrary monetary values) may consider Mike and Joe losers for using Shoshone bred cattle, the tradeoffs of being a loser is a less stressful life, Joe fishes and Mike golfs by day while King guards the Two Dot bridge by day and has sex all night rather than needing to watch his first calf heifers learn to become good productive mothers  : )

Here are a couple more pictures that I previously posted of close bred nubbins or nuggets from  the "63" cow familiy.....whether you like them or not, please notice the great similarity in characteristics, the cow below is 63/40 from 63/74 - I have two more two year old first calf nubbins or nuggets that Monte sent me as part of a joint transaction that look just exactly like her sired by the 6340's 2004 son out of the 1996 63/74 cow....... perhaps we can find them on Red Lodge Gathering day, I doubt they are the result of a ramdomized genetic event.

Monte Howry's #64, from 63/40's 2004 son x 63/83, the dam of the 63/74 cow

No one is more amazed than I at the similarity in types whether anyone considers them nubbins or nuggets, whatever they are, for me they are precious and rare genetic examples of FIXING A FUNCTIONAL TYPE.  Someone once asked me why I wouldn't want to increase the production level of my cows.....the answer is simply because I would begin to exchange the values of what I have and would lose any stabilization I may have gained.   Someone else can increase their production via complementary hybridization, that is not my role.    

I do want DF to know that numbers and breeders can fool some of the people some of the time, but we cannot fool Mother Nature......ultimately what you see is what you'll  get, all the needed proof is in the pudding....but perhaps only after a 100 years of sustainable improvement with "definite objects and ideals in mind with particular blood lines". : )   As we make our own choices in life, I need no association or academic organization to authenticate any  values of their ancestry, the cattle must do that  themselves by the measures of their progeny, anything else is strictly nostalgic.  

I certainly don't have a herd of identical cattle, but it is becoming a herd that is more similar in type, there are no miracle cattle here for everyone since Dylan described those kind as "jack of all and master of none” .. Ultimately we each must decide for ourselves whether in the pursuit of harnessing hybrid power, the end justifies the means.   I just wish someone else would do it for me, but as Hilly once told me, we probably couldn't afford to buy it so we just do what we can while we can one step at a time.     I can well imagine all the trials and tribulations our forefathers endured when establishing the breeds trying to fix certain characters, and I am grateful for what they yes Gavin, I'm sure we all agree that there is no end to improvement in anything biological......or anything else for that matter.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Fri Jul 18, 2014 6:47 am

June 10, 2011

instead of more Reflections from LL this are pictures from BobH showing the Ramifications of using closebred Shoshone stock...

what better landscape than cattle in the tags are 3/4 to "full" Shoshone; green tags are 1/2 Shoshone...

awww...the complementarity of breeds...

competition for the role of Longhorn alternative...I think you get a lot of questions about these bulls at the Gathering

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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Fri Jul 18, 2014 7:07 am

from Larry on June 11, 2011

If a picture is worth a thousand words, I want to offer Bob Howard a special thank you for demonstrating the power of prepotency of purpose with affordable population genetics.and for taking the time and having the patient faith in applying the Tru Line concept = the cheaper easier way of producing more from less....when good is more than good enough . LL in the vicinity of happy satisfaction.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Fri Jul 18, 2014 7:09 am

from Larry on June 12, 2011

Eddie M wrote:

......Larry, A big family of females from the 63 cow spread out over a number of decades. If a young guy was going to create a "True-line herd" and was wise beyond his years, what advice would you give him on number of females to start and what is a guess of how many would be left after natures sorts them (and would be minimally needed) to build his herd? I guess that I am interested in your number history.

You mentioned the pictures of the Falloon cattle and a disappointment over no responses. I did not want to be a "mean person" and say bad things! But one thing that struck me was type was fixed but "show ring qualities" or "college judging team points" were not a guide to the cattle as far as toplines. I think in the same way, I guess. If they work and there are some general faults then it really does not matter. It is something that I hear from what little discussion I've heard on some of the Wye cattle over the years: concerns over top lines, pinched behind the shoulders, dips, etc. Not all but some. Yet the herd keeps plugging along. Thanks for posting and keeping us in the pondering mode.

Any young guy who was going to create a "TruLine herd", if he "was wise beyond his years", he would have done a thorough and intensive study of history and wouldn't need any advice from me on the number of females to start with, or my number history ....he would already know there's safety in numbers, and how many would be left after his sorts would depend on how high his standards were and the germ plasm he'd be working with.

Before embarking on such an endeavor, any young man wise beyond his years would also be aware of the costs/risks and would not jeopardize his otherwise diversified livelihood by putting all his eggs in one basket. He would also know that the "show ring qualities" or "college judging team points" were relatively useless in his endeavor and would not be influenced by mainstream registered monetary values.....that pursuits of perfection, fame and fortune could not be his primary objective.

How surprised I was when I met one such rare young man by the name of Craig Hilman who one day a coupla years ago just happened to show up on my doorstep during one of his ongoing humble searches for genetic truths while MK was here. Without mentioning all their names, I have met several other young men with a passionate interest in cattle breeding and I am always happy to sit down with them on a one to one basis to talk about genetic realities, managing general faults vs. high expectations in the Garden of Eden. One of the more memorable comments Craig made to me was that he knows in today's world, breeders cannot afford to breed the kind of cattle he needs to systematically produce beef more efficiently, that some of his neighbors are going broke chasing higher and higher performing cattle....he knows imputs are as important as output.

So Eddie, when you mention general faults, I have been in a pondering mode most of my life and like the Wye herd, most of us just keep plugging along. I went back and reviewed the pictures I posted of the Waigroup cattle and I ponder whether or not our peceptions of certain "toplines" are in fact a general fault. If goodness has a pattern, what you describe as being pinched behind the shoulders, dips, etc., I have noticed this seems to be fairly common among some "prolific" cows - being the normal rather than the abnormal.....I don't want to be a mean person saying bad things either, however, the show jocks might want to inject some mineral oil , feed special rations or other manipulations to fill out their "dips, etc."

To offer a few examples of common toplines, below is a picture of the Pinebank cow featured on their homepage...... featured I suppose because of her functional ATTRIBUTES, similar to the other Waigroup cows. Mike posted her individual prolific production records on which includes NZ comparative data.....two of her sons (Pinebank Waigroup 152/04 & 14/02) , with limited AAA progeny outcross records in the USA, have a combined low accuracy EPD average as follows:
CED +4.5
BW -1.9
WW +29
YW +36
CEM +3.5
Milk +4
MH +2
$EN +30.92
$W +25.09.

Pinebank 86/96 with bull calf 152/04 at 6 months of age.
Pinebank 152/04 now being collected from, and is in the Pinebank Semen Team

In regards to the "63" cow family, below is a picture and pedigree of Shoshone 6357 when she was a young cow, who's functional attributes allowed her to live to be about 20 despite being somewhat "closebred" with a topline of dips, etc. often considered "general faults":

And while there are exceptions to most any rule, I just happen to have this old picture of the 6310 cow when she was a first calf heifer, born in 1981 sired by Laveron of Wye ....perhaps her dips, etc. are a little more exaggerated in this picture but despite them, she is Shoshone Encore's dam and I believe Mike told me he sold Encore when he was about 10 or 11 years of age...... and 6310 was also the dam of Mike and Joe's FELIX bull, who was an active sound bull until about 11 years of age, Mike can confirm these things more accurately than I, including the age of 6310 when she was disposed {17-mk}. So I tend to like females with pretty heads, hips, dips, curves and tidy udders rather than the boxy, easy fleshing types

The sire of Felix, Shoshone Eric 1701 was an intensification of the cow pictured below, Quija of Wye as a young cow, who was one of Wye's most fertile and long living cows despite some men's perception of an improper "topline", pinched heartgirth or lack of natural "thickness"..... Mike used ERIC by natural service to flush his full sister ( Shoshone Erica Tag #1702) when he was about 10 years of age. These and other relatives are pictured on my prior posts.....and of course, Mike and I are somewhat biased, none of us like to be crtiqued on what we're doing lest we walk in other's shoes ......and Bootheel don't like velcro shoes

The picture below is Shoshone A724 as a six year old taken by Craig on one of her "fleshier" better looking days when feed was in abundance, a cow Craig purchased despite her lack of squared straight topline favored by show standards.....what on earth can Craig be thinking about as he continues building his TruLine concept herd.....perhaps he will explain it all on "gathering day":

Needless to say I was elated when Craig just told me he successfully flushed this cow recently to his Banjo bull who carries the below cow's major influence. I suppose I get as excited over building an ancestoral pedigree full of fertile, long living prolific cows as the mainstream gets over building peidigrees with the highest numbers, or as others get when building pedigrees of trophy winners or selling very high priced cattle.....different strokes for different folks ..

Banjo of Wye Umf 6413
Reg: AAA 11216396
BUILDING PEDIGREES TO INCREASE GENE FREQUENCIES.....Qualton and Banjo were both sired by Lonestar. As the Wye herd "keeps plugging along", Dwight Riggleman spent over 10 years building pedigrees with some of the most prolific and long living cows produced over 40 years from 1938 to 1978 within the Wye herd......Banjo was one of his more successful attempts who today has one of the highest $EN (32.84) saving values combined with $W (32.89) values in the very top percentiles of the breed. Lonestar and Leonid were not among Wye's highest performing individuals, Leonid's dam Leah was a daughter of Luria. Just some incidental factual data for DF.

Birth Date: 02/01/1989 Tattoo: 6413

Parentage: Blood type, Microsatellite, SNP
Genomic: IG384

Breeder: 371945 - Univ of Maryland Fdn Inc, Queenstown MD

Owner(s): 185855 - David A Freeman, Marshall NC
1027753 - Diamond D Angus Inc, Valier MT

.......Fabron of Wye AAA 2467117
...Corbin of Wye AAA 4613484
.......Colleen of Wye AAA 1559908
Lonestar of Wye AAA 7478224
.......Prince of Malpas AAA 2776941
Luria of Wye AAA #4020176
.......Lolita of Wye AAA 3323316

.......Perseus of Wye AAA 9207175
...Leonid of Wye AAA #9899946
.......Leah of Wye AAA 6026220
Blackbird of Wye Umf 5362 AAA #10319253
.......Father of Wye AAA 5221331
...Babine of Wye AAA 9911895
.......Babs of Wye AAA #9493700
# Pathfinder

EPD Percentiles
As of 06/02/2011 Production Maternal
Acc BW__.67 -1.0
Acc WW_.84 +25
Acc YW_.78 +34
Acc YH__.12 -.5
Acc SC__.69 -.33
Acc Doc__.72 +21
Acc CEM__.10 +4
Acc Milk___.72 +11
Acc MkH___115 27
MkD MW__.71 -45
Acc MH___.71 -.9
Acc $EN__ +32.84

And lest we forget, let's take another look at the type of the ole cow Blythe was as we study history pondering about the relationship between form and efficient maternal function.

GOODNESS HAS A PATTERN.....a Lingle Wyism.

Under the topic "closebred nubbins", Tom D wrote:
Thanks MS. For this discussion, let's consider "fertile" to be the natural condition, present unless somehow selected against. Let's consider "infertility" to be caused by something(s). This is why I don't consider the 29% and the 10% as related to each other. I will try to explain my thinking further later, as I currently have two little boys wanting to play and a roast in the oven.
When Tom said ...."unless somehow selected against", I could certainly appreciate Dennis Voss's response when he said:

I like your priorities Tom D, My only point on the inbred 6807 cattle that I worked with had to do with the internal fat surrounding the reproductive tracts, but some exhibited masculine looking necks and overall appearance also. Then a frail "Jersey" type would always breed up. Shoshone cattle are the most fertile cattle I have had experience with, what makes this so? DV


For more points to ponder, please know I am not promoting Waigroup, Wye or Shoshone cattle either with or without their "general faults", nor do I believe it is economically feasible to throw out the baby with the bathwater, I simply would like to think that if in fact "Shoshone cattle are the most fertile" of the many cattle Dennis has worked with, that it stems from the selection of the accumulated ancestry for that purpose rather than from selection against it, "caused by something(s)"....I'm merely presenting what I perceive as being we reap what we can each decide whether or not cows are just incubators for the next great bull .

Smile Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Tue Jul 22, 2014 7:13 am

MK wrote on 6-14-2011

Charles and I happened across the facsimile below Saturday complete with low behind the shoulder and a slopping only took the son of the top cow twice to recreate mom...

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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Tue Jul 22, 2014 7:18 am


This begins several pics from Bob Howard;
starting with this note from Bob...
Mike here are some more pictures; this is just random photos of about 120 head of mixed age Shoshone bred females and bulls. The calves with white tags are Wagyu, the black ballies were the experiment with line one Hereford x, The charolais are all out of Eaton bulls and the black calves are Shoshone 3/4 or more. We have made a ranch decision to change directions a few degrees. We are now breeding all of our Shoshone Females back to Shoshone with our sight on the grass-fed business. Will visit more later Bob

what`s a registered breeder to do if all the commercial men start breeding/keeping their own bulls?

Wagyu heifer calf...

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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Tue Jul 22, 2014 7:19 am

0N 6-19-2011 Larry wrote

Hilly wrote:

......"I appreciate the attempt of the charts but I am more interested in the joules and the cost of those joules in a given plate of beef.

Fertility does take a hit during fixation as do other economically important traits... Nothing is free.

But to me if I attempt to step back as Larry has and look for a more overall efficient way to " more regularly produce beef animals which at the lowest possible cost and expenditure of labour give the highest possible and longest lasting net returns .......... "

Thank you for your common sense and logic Craig, and to Bob Howard for the pictures as an example of this basic objective......building a practical "work and wear" cow herd via population genetics in tune within an environment outside the complicated and expensive registered mainstream the simple preg test after breeding season determines the basic type to systematically produce the "seedless fruit" with year by year economic product flexibility. Over the years, I learned to appreciate Tom Lasater's statement - "Cattle breeding is a relative simple endeavor, the only difficult part is to keep it simple".......and Bob has learned how simple and easy it can be while enjoying life raising beef cattle for his livelihood, MikeK says as simple as ABC ......if we have X, Y and Z : ) LL in the vicinity of producing work and wear cattle at the lowest possible cost and expenditure of labour......not too sure about the rest of "it" : )
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Tue Jul 22, 2014 7:42 am

Larry wrote on 6-21-2011

The pictures and several pages of comments of Dylan's topic "A Reflective Post" are all very interesting to me ....... two of his posted pictures looked kinda familiar to me, kinda like deja vu, I think MikeK would've made a similar observation : )
6 yr old 42R with "a magical touch of Jersey" A Jim Leachman quote.

and including this 6 yr old 97R, touched with Jersey again

Dylan said:

I have been and will continue to be a habitual experimenter. That is what got me started with line breeding my Angus cattle.
Some wrecks along the way, keeps life interesting though.
The Jersey deal was a result of a heifer breeding experiment in the mid 80's.
The astounding thing about the Jersey influence is the amazing fertility in spite of the milk and thin appearance.
Made me re evaluate fertility in a number of different contexts.
Guaranteed the milking ability udder size and depth in most of the 1/2 bloods with calving on green grass was over the top.
So I don't want a whole herd of Jerseys, 1/2 Jerseys or a herd of Angus cows that look and produce like Jerseys, but a 1/4 or even an 1/8 has never proven a liability in our commercial cocktail cows, to the contrary actually.
My previous oldest producing cow ever here was a half Jersey, 16 and had been put through the ringer.

"Over the top"......Jersey, Wagyu, Longhorn or whatever crosses, I realize that these two animals with Jersey influence pictured above may be Dylan's survivors, only he knows how many others bred like them may have failed, but the only point I want to make here is that I find it simply amazing how form follows functional selection regardless of breed (s) : ) I had to smile when Dylan said he is a habitual experimenter......we all are when it comes to breeding cattle and have our own share of wrecks along the way but we usually have enough good happen as Eddie M says to "keep us plugging along".....maintaining a sense of humor always helps as we stumble around : )
As I viewed your interesting post Dylan, my thoughts went back to when I started my own unique experimental project, how I told Mike at that time that lacking for a better description, that I referred to my yellow tagged Angus as my "beef jerseys", an unknown prophecy which was destined to become somewhat true as we intensified the influence of Qualton of Wye within that narrow initial nucleus- milk increased rather than the expected decrease from closer breeding. So, if Braunvieh has its Brown Swiss, Shorthorn its milk and beef breeds, Beef Fresian or Amerifax its Holsteins, Brahma its Santa Gertrudis, Brangus or Beefmaster derivatives, with all the diversity in the Angus population, I suppose one end of the spectrum could be described as "beef jerseys" if some describe the other end as "beef simmi's" rather than when someone labeled the original Simmentals as a dual purpose breed, then Fleckvich and Gelbvich must also be "dual purpose" ..... yet today one could rightfully describe Angus as being an "all-purpose" breed. : )

I am ashamed to admit it took me several decades to finally recognize that maintaining "breed purity" by AAA registered public pedigree was actually a sloppy perpetrated hoax by its diverse membership, especially since science has created across breed EPD based on averages. I have spent many hours here on my reflections describing the public history of my experiments working within an "all-purpose" breed. But one of my more fascinating experiments was in dealing with human nature when I stopped making everything I do regarding the breeding of my cattle public information. I quickly grew to understand DF's insistence on substantiated scientific data based soley on averages and Jim's opinion that some of us are just breeding "blue sky" cattle without all those demanding public measures. And we're all familiar with the established systems and how we scour our or others pastures looking for the "better" individuals.....the perpetual pursuits of the outliers for whatever all our different reasons might be.

Folks, some of the ill conceived notions in this business leads me to my phone conversation with Mike a few days ago about how to handle the growing number of logistics during the upcoming "August Gathering". I have no idea what any expectations will be, but this non-promotional gathering will be DIFFERENT. Please know beforehand that I will not be sorting my cattle for any specific displays, a common practice during cattle tours.....rather the cattle will be scattered on 500 acres for viewing either on foot, 4-wheelers or in pickups. ..... as Bob Howard said, "Just good average cattle for just good average people thanks LL." Like anyone, I too have my favorite individuals, but they too, like everyone, also have their genotypic faults or shortcomings. Some attending may have had some experience with the consequential epistatic effects of close breeding but going into specific pedigrees or my private records would serve no useful purpose other than maybe help you understand what you might not want to do in your own breeding ventures.

Some of these general pro and con things of my objectives will be open for discussion to broaden any viewpoints for those interested in "what and how things happened" in my own particular circumstances. There have been many thought provoking questions evolving by posters under the KC topic of "Direct vs maternal calving ease". I certainly cannot provide answers to many of those questions beyond the theoretical based on examples from my limited observations. I am aware that those attending the gathering have "inquiring minds who want to know", and so am I......I am quite sure that most of you will all leave with more questions than answers as we "dissect the parts of the whole" : )

It is indeed an honor to have so many interested in coming and I have assured Mike that I will try to help him make your visit a comfortable and relaxing one..........BS (and Blue Sky) will not be on the menu, as MS stated "ya'll come" and just enjoy yourselves, Mike is responsible for that part of it  Smile  LL
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Thu Aug 07, 2014 7:53 am

from LL... Subject: the gathering Wed 10 Aug 2011

I want to express my sincerest gratitude to all who attended the "Keeney 's Corner Gathering"
and thank you all for just being the special extra ordinary people who you all are. I must admit
that when Mike started talking about this event, I was, to say the least, quite apprehensive.
I must also admit after it was over, driving back to Cowley yesterday as we all returned to the
day by day routines of our lives, it became crystal clear that certainly this gathering was not the
ending of one of the greater highlights of my life, but the beginning.

It was recently implied on 5barx in a negative way that my close association with Dennis, Mike
and Brian will be my legacy......I do hope that prophesy is fulfilled......I wish everyone could know
what all Dennis, Mike and so many others have done along the way to help guide me down the
road less traveled, helping me build bridges over obstacles seeking a better pathway leading to this
new frontier.....dreaming what some might call an impossible dream, better known on these
web pages as "blue sky".

I was so proud of Ben, leaning forward sitting there on his horse talking with the crowd about the
ordinary things of ranch life with his extra-ordinary wonderful family in the the background......
I hope Hollywood doesn't steal him from us.

I've forewarned some of you what wonderful people Dennis and Erica are, now you all know.
I had to laugh at Dennis's post yesterday, that he denied my request to be more tolerant of some the poem submitted on KC yesterday tells how most of us spend our lives chopping
away at the leaves of evil....... DV and MK go after the roots. Of course poems have also been
banned from 5barx, so welcome to KC Ralph......and I did find out Tom D also uses alias names when
posting, something about a "red headed stranger" : )

And then there is Bill Byars, who I've been acquainted with from the beginning, now physically
handicapped, who's son Chris brought him all the way out from Missouri. Sitting in the car while at
the Frostee Freeze in Big Timber, he told me now that he has an autographed copy of the surprise book
that Brian so generously put together and distributed during the gathering, that now he would have to
contact his home fire insurance agent to increase the valuation of the contents.

As usual with his creativity, nothing surprised Betty and I more than when MK had Kristina present Betty
with the "Cattle Breeder Wife of the Year" award. Betty has complained over the years that she is a non-person,
my maid she is finally my maiden of honor after 55 years of marriage......and I couldn't have
picked a better mother. Speaking of mothers, August 5th was my mother's 95th birthday. She is now
in a nursing home and when I told her I couldn't be there for her 95th birthday, she said "Oh my gosh, am I really
going to be that old", so I just told her of all the mothers in the world, I was so lucky that I got the best one.
Not many of you know that Linda and Kristina are each others best friends, the only mistake besides me driving right
on past our destinations was when I had to correct Mike on Kristina's last name, it is not Keeney now, it is MRS. SAUER,
school teacher. I had a dinner date with Mrs. Sauer when Betty was still in Cowley, but it was a one night stand once
all the younger good looking men started arriving.

Folks, it isn't any wonder that I breed maternal, I am a victim of my environment. Maternal values are not only
the backbone of the cattle industry, they are the backbone of the world. And I cannot thank Dennis enough for
the most vivid demonstration that was left unsaid. And that is I didn't hear anyone talking about or critiquing the
quality of the 12 Longhorn bulls Dennis had with his yearling heifers, only the comments about the surprisingly
goodness and uniformity of the F1 yearling heifers...... I wondered if anyone realized those F1 females were all
out of first calf heifers while the black heifers were most likely out of cows, the backbones of the herd. Yet when
we got to the purebred Angus cows, we circled and circled for those who wanted to find and see a particular Angus
bull sired by a NZ Pinebank bull. Someone asked me if the Horse Butte bull Ben Dimond brought to display was
the type of bull that sired good females.......I would rather have seen his progeny since I never could see the "X"
chromosome in a bull, but knowing his ancestry, he certainly displayed their calm intelligent temperment, not too big,
not too little, not too fat or muscular, not too skinny or flat muscled, and most importantly, likely not a bull that
would cause more problems than benefits.

In my current emotional state of mind, at this time I just want to mention a couple of things. While we were all in
my garage when I asked Sam why he went back to using old bulls, if I remember right, he implied that he thought
the men of that era were better breeders. Not necessarily in agreement, this could have evolved into a
time wasted discussion..... we cannot change the past nor present......we can only change our futures from what
we have learned from any mistakes of the past. I don't know what is/was so good about "pure old line Scotch Angus"
since our present day cattle descend from them. And someone recently reminded us of the fallacy of doing the same
things over and over again expecting a different result. I have talked at length over the years about harnessing
hybrid power and it certainly won't happen if all we do is to continue going around ooohing and aaahhing looking for
those perfect bulls......or an imperfect yet perfect world. As Wright said a 100 years ago, the principles
are exceedingly simple, the difficulty is in the application.

That single "difficulty" seems to be our individual obsession with time. Someday we will quit mating 3's to 5's
to get a 4 by the numbers, someday we might mate 3's to 3's to get a 6 in value, so thanks Dennis and Bob H. for
demonstrating the beginnings of that direction as we improve the "purity" of the COMPLIMENTARITY of the parents.......
working together rather than in bitter competition with one another while Dennis and Mike continue chopping away at
the roots that forestall this progressive movement. : )
Thanks again for sharing your lives with me in one small spot in the world, for I consider this group to be among
the richest people on the face of this earth. LL
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Thu Aug 07, 2014 7:58 am

from LL...Wed 17 Aug 2011

Tom D wrote:

Sometimes poor quality camera phone photos can look like beautiful paintings.
And Tom, after talking with you until the wee hours of the morning, I'm guessing that your point was that sometimes poor quality animals can produce animals that look like beautiful specimans. My recent reflections have been particularly focused on the topic of "closebred nubbins", and I laughed when Keystone described this industry as one of "bobble heads" Smile Kent finished his post with:

".......I have now reached the point that I am almost out of stupid answers. How about some stupid questions, just for the effect of repitition and to perhaps reinvigorate this discussion?

1. How do you produce maternal cattle with from cows that produce the poorest performing calf when they get around to breeding?

1A. How do you produce maternal cattle from cows that produce the highest performing calf when they get around to RE-breeding ?

2. How can a shaggy brown cow produce early shedding, slick haired, fescue adapted cattle?
2A. How can early shedding, slick haired, fescue adapted cattle produce a shaggy brown cow?

3 . What will be the fertility effect in Nubbin`s daughters? ......."
3A. What will be the fertility effect on the Biggest bull's daughters?

MK answered:
Kent, the reason Nubbin`s mom is still here is NOT because I think she offers significant contribution to the gene pool...but to see if I could arrive at some sort of answers for myself to the very questions you ask above, to complicate things a bit more; the two year old pictured above is Shoshone, not outcrossed..

Nor necessarily highly INBRED.

RobertMac asked:

You going to breed Nubbin back to his mom?

Bob Howard took a stab at some answers .... saying in part:

I thought that MARC research center was the future and had tried to breed cattle with their thoughts in my head and failed miserably. We were replacing 25% of our cowherd a year. ....that breeding cattle was not a trick, it is due diligence.....and find that it alleviates allot of problems. You can use these cows to get any end product that you wish to make........these are lifetime decisions and it is going to take time and the more you jump around, the longer it will take.

Another observation that I made at Red Lodge was that all of you folks from the Southeast had problems with heat on your cattle. My thought is that I would not fight a black hide; I would find and make a maternal line of white hided cattle.....

From black to white we tend to go with no "in between". Smile While color may help, I think we all know that the functional type is much more important. Bob H also said "when I asked Larry how much Inbred regression he sees when he uses multiple sires and his answer was that it has flat lined for now."......which is due to my selection criterion in order to sustain current acceptance (marketability). We all use multiple sires but not necessarily in the same pasture at the same time. Firstly, I want to reiterate that phenotypic performance selection seems to self govern the degree of inbreeding regression.....And secondly, until evaluation, I don't know if the shaggy brown cow is shaggy because of natural epistatic conditions (gene shutdowns) within the genome, or a matching of "detrimental holes in the two sheets of paper", or both.

So Kent, in regard to your questions based solely on the picture of her two year old daughter and the fact that her daughter settled on first service AI, it suggests to me that it is the former rather than the of nature's automatic population control mechanisms. I don't know how that works, so, Mike would certainly be fishing for a phenotypic miracle if he could successfully mate Nubbin back to his mom before he is thoroughly evaluated either over a specific or a randomized populaton......little doubt the offspring of that mating would be more prepotent, but prepotent for what? But, most of us like to fish hoping to catch that big one : )

I like Bob Howards words, "IT IS DUE DILIGENCE". It would be interesting to see the results of mating the "inbred nubbins" of MS mated to the "inbred nubbins" of Outside the Box for complementarity.....surely they were initially inbred because of the visual qualities expressed by some of their ancestry, so I would not necessarily be surprised at the results of the "restoration process". It seems the only way to measure any positive progress made by inbreeding is to measure the "restoration" along with any non-additive illusionary benefits of heterosis.....but, then the next question is always now what do we do with "it"? Inbreeding is just a tool to reduce the variables of selection quicker.

So, along this line of thought relative to linebreeding/inbreeding the very "best" and getting the very "worst", during our discussions at the RL gathering, someone asked if I would use the bull "Clark of Wye" after Eddie Draper told everyone Clark always fell over backwards from mounting while being collected...... they have semen in storage on him but Eddie says the UMF herd has never used any. Lest we can only breed AI like the large breasted turkey breeders do, most commercial beef cow herds need to be functionally reproductive under natural conditions, whatever that means. I would like to offer just as an example from a 70 year old herd with factual public history learning from our selection directions using Clark's pedigree taken from the "business breed's records"...... and tell the story behind him: Since old men can't do much anymore, our favorite pastime is to tell stories, so perhaps this example will also help Morgan Hartman better understand why I formed the opinion that we need both reproduction (maternal) and production (paternal) types of seedstock to improve beef production, period.

Clark of Wye Umf 6116Reg: AAA 10916527
Birth Date: 02/18/1987 Tattoo: 6116

Parentage: SNP
Genomic: IG384

Breeder: 371945 - Univ of Maryland Fdn Inc, Queenstown MD

Owner(s): 371945 - Univ of Maryland Fdn Inc, Queenstown MD

............................. Lundell of Wye AAA #9635771
............. Landrover of Wye Umf 5234 AAA 10319331
............................ Lavonne of Wye AAA #6754980
Landark of Wye Umf 5766 AAA 10635360
............................ Pastor of Wye AAA 6418155
............ Loanda of Wye (Lundell's dam) AAA 7226501
........................... Loania of Wye AAA 6418011

........................... Lundell of Wye AAA #9635771
........... Landrover of Wye Umf 5234 AAA 10319331
.......................... Lavonne of Wye AAA #6754980
Clova of Wye Umf 5638 AAA 10635257
......................... Lundell of Wye AAA #9635771
...........Clova of Wye Umf 5275 AAA #10319328
......................... Candida of Wye AAA 6026206

Lundell was born in 1980 during the beginning of my transition years and I was one of eight others with whom Dick Beck established a purchase value at $250,000.00, my share of 1/8 of 1/2 of the bull cost me $9,375.00....surely a bull that couldn't miss the target, the best of the best. Clark was born 6 years later, one of Dwight's sincere efforts to restore the maternal values which had been declining in the Wye herd, by concentrating the PRODUCTION and overall goodness of Lundell's dam and ancestry, so named out of his admiration and respect of Mr. K. A. Clark......J.B. Lingle's cohort during the importation of those pure Scottish Angus bulls. While hindsight can be 20/20, Clark was created by projected pedigree merit. Six years was hardly long enough to actually evaluate Lundell's maternal attributes, note that this common ancestor was already back in the third generation. This was one of the lessons I learned that so often haste makes waste.

However, there was also a special bull calf born in 1979, so appropriately named Legacy of Wye, who was sired by Lucan of Wye, another top performer also produced by Lundell's dam. I think Eddie could reaffirm that Legacy never left any worthwhile remants in the Wye herd. And today I don't have any remnants of Lundell or Lucan left in the herd, even after naming one of the "best" sons a derivative of my own name....."Shoshone Laurent" who was out of my high producing Lass cows.....and after the failure of "Shoshone Laredo", a Midland tested high performance bull leased to ABS, I later became skeptical about naming bulls after myself for fear of it predicting their suredom of maternal failure. I've observed that most of the "top" performing bulls tend to come from good, smaller productive cows.

I doubt anyone has made more selection errors than I have, suffering from all my high expectations, which is so common among registered breeders. Yet we persist, so when LARkota (not an alias for me & Brian) posted that Mr. Jim Wilson told him that "all them semen pushers should be jailed for what they have done to the American cow herd.", rather than try to "straighten out" Jim L, I would rather think that "they" have just been fullfilling a demand for those of us who have an ID ten T-post problem......our time would be better spent in rehabilitating those of us who just can't seem to get over this common help is available at Jack's clinic near Miles City ......only those younger than 50 qualify for entrance, which is better explained by a blue sky email I received the other day:

As we "Silver Surfers" (older folks on the Internet) know, sometimes we have trouble with our computers handicapped by our inability to teach an old dog new tricks.

I had a problem yesterday, so I called Eric , the eleven year old next door, whose bedroom looks like Mission Control and asked him to come over .

Eric clicked a couple of buttons and solved the proble m .

As he was walking away, I called after him, 'So, what was wr on g?

He replied, 'It was an “ID ten T err o r”.

I didn't want to appear stupid, but nonetheless inqu i red,

'An, ID ten T error? What's that? In case I need to fix it a g ain.'

Eric grinned.... 'Haven't you ever heard of an ID ten T error b efore?

'No,' I r eplied.

'Write it down,' he said, 'and I think you'll figure it out.'

So I w rot e it dow n.


I used to like Eric , that little shit.

I wouldn't mind if he's a little shit, I'd love to have him live in my house!

What's in a name.....well, I once had a bull named Shoshone Eric, a littler sh*t born in 1983 who clicked a couple more buttons in my brain to help me solve my own ID ten T- post problems......and Dennis just happens to have a wife named Erica who also knows how to click the right buttons..... so I had to laugh when Dennis recently wrote Mike and said, "......Thanks for posting a wonderful picture of Erica. This ranch should actually be called the Spirit of Erica ranch. I'm just her Japanese geneticist/hired man.." Mr. Falloon's geneticist is Chinese with deep black eyes who could see the light, but not what type it would be at the end of the curving tunnel : ).

So here we are Kent trying to find answers to how ugly can produce pretty and I end up describing how pretty can produce ugly. We don't need to know precisely how it works, we only need to know the cause and effect. Please know that Mike was pleasantly surprised when that littler "Eric" bull sired "Felix" born 10 years later in 1993 - out of Encore's dam from natural service and most of you here know the rest of Mike's story. So, in this land of bobble heads using the extremes of both ends of the distributions, where close bred nubbins tend to breed up from what they are, and beautiful individuals tend to breed down from what they are, is it any wonder that my herd is "flat lined" for now by using multiple sire pastures.....the only difference is just that the herd has smaller zigs and zags than it had before.

Dennis has noticed that the individuals in the Horse Butte antelope herd don't keep getting larger or smaller but stay in TUNE with their environment........I sometimes call that "stablization", if what you see is what you get. In the bobble head business we measure differences, not sameness; we measure output, not input; we measure ratios and half our herd is always below average, there don't seem to be many average cattle and so it goes with human comparisons..

So, I kinda like the nickname of MS's "Longhorn type" Charolais white cow "Toony" and especially the unique and likeable look on her face in the picture ......there you go for you southeast guys concerned about heat.....I'd bet she doesn't have the heat and coming in heat problems of the fattest Kent, I hope these things I've mentioned give us enough to reinvigorate the discussion, and where will that leave us while looking for answers in all the right places ? Smile

LL in the vicinity of being back in the Cowley saddle again watching my skinny oversexed young bulls ride each other, stuck in between a R & HP still trying to click on the right buttons so people like Bob H can use these bulls to produce contented functional cows who can produce any kind of product they want from much easier...... as he's said before, it's not rocket science, just simply "mate the boys to the girls to get little ones", no tricks or fanfare, just due diligence.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:00 pm

MKeeney wrote on Aug 25, 2011...

ok, so it seems know that you can`t inbreed Father/Lundell etc and get acceptable phenotype in the offspring...but don`t you think, that Wye, as a research institution would do us all a benefit if they used a few straws of Clark semen...just to see...isn`t that what we often do at our own expense?
just because the inbred offspring are poor phenotypically, does that mean they will not outcross ok?

part of my reference is below...Unwanted`s dam seems prepotent for the type I want...
two year old springing ddaughter

three year old with calf

BUTTTTTTT, bred back to herself, as close as I can get anyways, things might go to heck in a hurry...because of gene alignment not being complimentary? just stabbing in the can stab back... Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:02 pm

Larry Leonhardt wrote on Aug 25, 2011

Mike asked:

how much forethought went into making Balboa? years, or between? what did you not like about Laurent daughters.....I thought they were sure ok here...

"How much" ......MANY YEARS, watching many bulls and cows come and go making their splashes each creating their own waves in circular  directions that soon disappear in the imaginary sea of tranquility.    "Forethought into making Balboa" do we cause that random half of the genotype to be more consistent to give us the preferred type more often;    what useful type is economically sustainable...nearly any type is sustainable at a price;   and finally from generation to generation, most important is how do we transfer that type intact to the commercial beef producer?    Whew, this takes alot of deep thinking over the years to simplify the complex questions.

Obviously, like most Balboa was an experimental  bull, who was my first step going down this road filled with obstacles, some foreseen, most not yet known.    It was not a matter of which comes first, the chicken or the egg nor which is more important, the male or the female....... one cannot exist without the other.    So when talking about the importance of a bull, I had to laugh when Gavin jokingly said a cow is nothing more than an incubator......but don't tell that to your mother, wife or daughter.    We often talk about how we must work with Mother Nature, providing parental stock without reference to the female gender, maternal motherhood is more about Mother Nurture  Smile .

In my previous posts I've used individual animals  as examples of my zigs and zags trying to establish a useful maternal type......while populations consist of individuals, I am more interested in the population as a whole, and that is why I became so interested in Gavin Falloon's similar approach....when 41/97 died, he stated the bull was just another individual who helped move the population towards his objective.    So when you asked about an individual, what I "did not like about Laurent daughters..I thought they were sure ok here...", without going into specific details, most importantly was the fact that they deviated somewhat from my primary long term objective.    It is kind of like the topic "Feet by Dennis Voss" where it is an attempt to establish a type of preferred foot structure without disrupting too much else, admittedly a time consuming yet admirable process.   I suppose that is what most of us all try to do, but few are successful without disrupting "something else", fixing one thing while bringing in two more things to fix later on.  Smile

After all is said and done, we are in the "beef" business, and I had to make the choice of whether I wanted a functional maternal type who's one half of her genetic contribution to the production of "beef" enhanced either quality.... or quantity enmasse.....or some compromise in between........ involving many compatible traits while still learning to avoid many disruptive ones.....and in the meantime I got my turn to be the old man who got a little wiser too late.

I would like everyone to consider the time frame in 1984 when Laurent was born and the movement of the industry at that time towards leaner, faster growing, bigger beef animals.     That was back before the advent of CAB and carcass EPD's.    For those who prefer data, subjective or not, you can look up the downward generational trend of carcass quality on Laurent's AAA pedigree values (#10564700).   As of now, compared to his maternal grandmother, his $G dropped from 16.77 to 5.95 and his $QG droppped from 15.47 to 1.66.......compared to Balboa's $G of 29.08 and $QG of 21.69.     I don't know how significant these numbers are to any of you, but they do indicate a subtle trend and this was one of my major reasons for evaluating carcass merits along with other differences in the smaller, medium and larger framed individual bulls of similar ancestry from the distributions during the 80's.......which incidently coincided with the general trends of the breed during that era.

And of course, too much emphasis on carcass values will disrupt other essential values     I am often amused that we want cattle that are rough and tuff survivors in any environment and yet we want them to eat "tender and tasty".     So Mike, I hope this provides you with some partial answers to your questions.....I'm glad the Laurent daughters were "OK" for you, I just didn't want to compound my zigs or zags in the distributions since I've been told a straight line is the shortest distance between two points....... which reminded me of Tom B's remarks sometime back last fall about the breeds many "crossroads", or my putting the Aberdeen back into Angus when I'm still trying to figure out what year it was that we lost  "Aberdeen".    Smile

I do prefer driving down a straight flat road where I can see for miles ahead  in the daylight rather than the twisting and winding up and down hilly road that Tom D. drove for me from Fishtail back to Red Lodge, in the dark never knowing what lurked ahead.    I want to thank Tom and Rod, both very careful drivers and I also want to thank you Mike for all you do and especially how you posted Kendra's pictures and comments under the topic of "Ben's place, human perspectives"..... being teachers these two "K"s, Kendra and Kristina (Mrs. Sauer), have one of the most responsible occupations in the world and to brighten our days,  their smiles are priceless assets.....just what Mr. Sauer needed.....and I did find out Mean Spirit isn't mean at all.......tis a mystery how in the world all these nice bright people appeared out of the dark side of Keeneys Corner.....kinda like poor animals producing good ones, just Nature preserving a balance,  I guess   Smile

LL in the vicinity of KC or KK turning frowning attitudes into smiles ..... my wish that everyone leave the KC Gathering happy and content in their own circumstances was granted ...... overwhelmingly!   Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:08 pm

Larry Leonhardt wrote an Anniversary post on Oct 10, 2011

MK previously wrote:

twas thinking the other day, what and how a cattleman breeds is his private business, but when he sells it publicly, it becomes everyone`s business -

"..........I'm searching though I don't succeed
breed stability, there's a growing need
If all is looks, there's no place for beginning
All that's left is an unhappy ending........."

MK later wrote:

today Oct 7, just so happens to be the one year anniversary of this topic...21,664 views, or about 60 per day...
Stay hungry Larry...and stay foolish  Smile  

When you tell me to "stay foolish", I hope you are referring to its synonym of "simple" rather than its more common usage of being stupid or ridiculous.    As I've learned from the fooleries on KC for a year now,  I want to thank you Mike for inspiring the topics expounding on the foolishness in this business.   My foolhardy nature is a search to succeed with a foolproof plan, so here is my anniversary post for those who thrive on fool's gold who choose to live in a fool's paradise   Smile

First in regards to the KC topic "Larry's writings", the other day by way of mail from Brian,  I received a few copies of the "book" you two renegades put together; and now that they've been sold publicly, I would like everyone to know the "shoshone collection"  is nothing more than a partial chronicle of my trials and tribulations while "searching though I don't succeed".......perhaps it might have been more appropriately entitled "What Not to Do"........Incidently,  there was no invoice or note in the box, so I wondered if they were my share of the royalties  .   And in regards to that part of your depressing poem, "all that's left is an unhappy ending", I would rather think that "there are no endings, only new beginnings" during the ordinary events in each of our own personal lives.

Ordinary events and uninteresting trivia....our silage chopping  happily "ended" the last day of  Sept (our winter grass for the cattle) and it was one of the warmer and most pleasant  Septembers I can recall.    The "beginning" of  a new beet harvest has been delayed because of the above normal  temperatures, the beets won't store in large piles until their root temperatures are below 55 degrees.....but the weather has changed dramatically.    To help OT keep us current on local conditions,  last Thursday it rained alot all night and continued thru the next day..... the surrounding mountains including Ben's Pryor's are white with new snow.     This will cause another delay and a much more difficult muddy struggle to get the sugarbeets harvested in this sticky, heavy clay soil before ole man winter sets in.     So during this interim peiod, last Sunday afternoon Betty and I went to Red Lodge to check on the cattle, I haven't been up to check on them for over a month, which is about normal ......and the good news is that I haven't heard any complaints from the neighbors up there yet that my cattle were out on the road or somewhere where they shouldn't be, which is a pleasant deviation from the normal.    

I'm glad  Bootheel has now decided he prefers to describe things as "medium" rather than "average", which is about as obscure as "normal".     Last Sunday was not one of my more busier normal days, rather it was more like a normal day for MK   .  Smile   We all have our good and not so good days and while driving thru the cows on my Gator putting out some salt blocks,  I began thinking about the content of some of the more recent comments on KC and a few private emails from people involved with a few of the cattle who just happened by circumstances to be born here, thus carrying the "shoshone" prefix.      If selling them publicly becomes everyone's business in the traditional mainstream of things, then what and how I breed these cattle is no longer my private business.   I also thought about what Keeney Angus, Horse Butte and others have done with some of these so called "shoshone cattle", some of them seemed good at the time and some turned out not to be so good......which seems "normal'.    Culling the bad and ugly..... I thought about how lucky I have been that there are a few other people like Dennis and Mike who have actually paid me with real money to help do my evaluation work for me.  Smile

Some people are like that...... I vividly recalled a visit from John Dockweiler back in the forepart of a different September in 2003.    I had met John at Red Lodge, he had been walking thru the cattle prior to my arrival, it was snowing and his papers with ear tag numbers were getting wet.    That was another decisive "new beginning" for JAD Angus when John purchased a group of "shoshone cows".that he had selected.     While our seasonal weather patterns may differ year by year,   I thought about how my cattle remain about the same as when John was here, the newer generations are simply a continuum of the "measureable progress" at all.... some would call this stagnation since I'm foolishly not trying to make the good ones better, but merely trying to make the not so good ones be more like the good ones......and that too is a universal struggle which some might call sustainability.

Now eight years later, when I reviewed John's JAD Angus public web page this Sunday morning,  my mind  became fixated on John's blog message with new descriptions about his experiences with those "shoshone cattle", wherein he wrote:  ..... "There is a softness throughout in these cows.  In their eyes, in their hair coats, in their skeletal design; they are soft like a white tail doe.......She is soft in her demeanor also, kind, gentle, nurturing.  She is the essence of maternal.  Does it matter?  Does it contribute to ranch profitability?   Is it highly heritable?  I guess everyone has to answer these questions for themselves.  I will tell you that I like it and I like range calving cows with these characteristics.....".  

Now we all know that not everyone likes "soft cattle" or their skeletal design or type.....and John has told me a few things about his struggles with the what's and how's of his breeding directions during the renewal processes.....John holds onto the strong belief in maintaining public registration papers rather than private, I suppose in order to provide some sort of legitimacy to his breeding directions, which are of course then subjected to open public scrutiny.     When John guesses that everyone has to answer these questions for themselves,  ultimately the public determines their comparative monetary value.    

This year I am 77 and I got tired.   I got tired of trying to breed cattle that please everyone for every reason.    I got tired of all the increasing demand for more and more trait by trait individual measures .   I got tired of all the other literally useless rules and regulations.    I got tired of the ever changing correctional selection directions.   I got tired of all the improbable high expectations seeking non-renewable perfection.    And boy oh boy, did I ever get tired of people measuring "success" by some monetary value.....and I got tired of  lots of other things too numerous to mention .  Smile    

Now as a tired old man, it took a lifetime to learn that the more important things in life are priceless.    Separating the wheat from the trash, if there's a growing need for stability , I get immeasureable satisfaction from greater understanding in order to simplify the complexity of genetics.    For example, on John's web page when I looked at the cow pictured below taken July 4, 2011, I immediately recognized my preferred characteristics she displayed from the ancestry including the trivial "soft brownish" tone between the calf's rear legs rather than being as "jet black as a crow".......and I can become very excited watching how the simple transfer of genes from generation to generation are repeated when selection fixes certain positive traits at an increased rate or frequency.

For me,  this picture is a priceless event when I look at the phenotypic replication of the "softness" of John's cow's as she displays her sire's dam and other closely related relatives who just happened to graze in my pastures.    And when I saw the picture John posted of the cow shown below that he recently purchased from Gary Funk, who for 30 years has been a user of some of the cattle under my custody, I got another of my priceless rewards.....especially since while at Red Lodge last Sunday, I just happened to bump into cow #6113, the dam of the sire of John's new cow who is a phenotypic "clone" of the 6113 cow.....and if I had Mike's camera, I could've posted it here as proof for DF   Smile .     So thank you John for giving me a coupla more priceless gifts raised in different environments.

And from Mike's handy camera, last week he sent me the pictures shown below of the #2966 cow born in 2000 and purchased from me last winter, her recent calf and one of her sons that he purchased at a very nominal price a few years ago.....another example where he pays me to do my evaluation work for me.......I kinda like these arrangements  .  Smile  


the orginal 2966x6343 Frank son

her calf..maybe by Porter

The 2966 cow just happens to be a "phenotypic clone" of her two maternal great grandams, 6345 and 2944 (typical paternal half sisters) and at first glance, I thought the picture Mike took of her calf born this year in KY was a reversed photo of the calf from John's Shoshone Prudence 6157 that I took born back in 2001 (shown below).    We all know  I don't create these cattle, all I merely do is select and concentrate my preferred genetic arrangements and it simply increases the heritability of the gene frequencies for their specific characteristics without all the other things we're supposed to do.    I cannot measure how much these kind of cattle can contribute to any ranch profitability but I doubt they will be the cause of any ranch going broke.


So, the primary purpose of this anniversary post is just to provide a little more fodder for contemplation while waiting for the beet fields to dry out.

LL in the vicinity of staying mentally tired and going to bed to dream about some more of my ongoing priceless projects......
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:56 am

MKeeney wrote:
Larry said
And when I saw the picture John posted of the cow shown below that he recently purchased from Gary Funk, who for 30 years has been a user of some of the cattle under my custody, I got another of my priceless rewards.....especially since while at Red Lodge last Sunday, I just happened to bump into cow #6113, the dam of the sire of John's new cow who is a phenotypic "clone" of the 6113 cow.....and if I had Mike's camera, I could've posted it here as proof for DF Smile .

A really wonderful thing about Mike`s camera is that is can go back in time to 2004, to when 6113 was nursing Shoshone Porter, her first calf...

Yeah, LL is getting old; I like those few months when he`s 12 years instead of 11 years older than I...Mike is just a kid compared to LL, and never more so, than when in LL`s presence in person or phone conversation...I think it`s not so much the age difference, as it the maturity level...combined with a difference in intellect and insight...that`s ok with me; Edison had Watson, Abbott had Costello, and Dick Smothers had Tom...Tom, that`s me, ...Tom the Doubter... the kid that would have taken the dollar... a dollar in my hand worth ten quarters in the barber`s pocket Smile
I`m going to post several pictures on this thread, with my doubts at the time I took them...the good thing about being immature is that I don`t mind admitting being foolish in the wrong way...being foolish is made easier knowing I`m not alone in that department; in fact, I`m in the company of some pretty good people who have erred from time to time...Let me retrace some of these things in hopes someone might avoid the same fate as I...
I remember 6113`s image in my mind as well as the camera does on paper...I really liked her; perfect cow I thought...BUT I wasn`t so sure about her calf I never bothered to ask a price...just as well, I know Funk would have paid a lot more than I; and LL wasn`t selling anyway...

...this perfect cow`s calf wasn`t deep and soggy enough to make cows like his mother...not the lack of depth and capacity in the daughter John bought Rolling Eyes Rolling Eyes Smile pretty hard for me to wrap my mind around that the calf might breed his ancestry, the look of his dam perhaps, instead of his own "look"...
and besides a little time, and these calves can change...get that deep soggy look later with a little feed to make`m belly down, get some flesh on that structure and some hair on that skin to stand those cold winters better that OT is here`s Porter as a yearling, just what everyone wants in the look of a yearling bull...right?

how would the judging team like him Norcal? kinda fine-boned in that picture Smile
but of course bulls do grow up...and they oughta be thick, deep, and heavy to sire those good cows...right?
like this bull?

but Porter grew up to look like this at three years of age...

no capacity; probably a two star fay-row bull?
now a quick comparison that occurred a year later...the heavy bull and Porter were running in the same pasture {someone might ask Larry why? given the differences in type}
the heavy bull, 6374, was nearby to a couple cows in heat, when Porter 300 yards away, noticed them too...while the 6374 meandered up to breed those cows, Porter came striding across the field with the speed of a hyped up, athletic there first, and bred the the power type where the profit lies? you certain of that?

Mike I have seen the same thing in multiple sire breeding groups. This is one of the major benefits of multi sire breeding, identification of the bulls with better servicing ability. My observations anecdotal as they are leads me to believe that libido trumps type or structure, I have witnessed the trimmer more athleic looking bulls be the top breeders and also the shorter coupled deeper bodied bulls. The best breeders in multi sire breeding groups seem to vary structurally in terms of type, but for sure the top breeders always have the libido, combined with an acute awareness of their surroundings and the intelligence to get the job done while avoiding conflict. Which is why I agree with Dennis with regards to observations of intelligence especially when it is demonstrated by the ability to compete in the breeding pasture very successfully. I will never forget a Red Angus bull I bred and used multi sire. He was on a dugout mind about 2/3's of a mile away from the west fence, he was busy keeping track of some cows by the water, when he noticed a cow being ridden over on the west fence. He covered that distance at very fast trot got there bred the standing cow even though another bull was there and trotted back to the dug out mound to continue monitoring the cows there. He happened to be a trimmer, tighter flanked type bull.
The Red Angus bull below was a superstar breeder till the age of 11, a tighter coupled pud type bull. As a yearling when he was dropped off in NR's pasture he was a forage developed 900 lb 14 month old bull. There was a large framed simmental cow in standing heat right by the trailer, I thought to myself, this bulls going to need a stool. Well he didn't he trotted right up to that cow and jumped right off the groung, both hind feet off the ground and bred her and fell off of her right on to his back.

Dylan Biggs, thinking that multi sire breeding is a good way to prove the breeding ability of bulls.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Wed Aug 20, 2014 8:01 am

Larry wrote on 10-12-2011

I wondered why you edited out DF's response to my last post......{mk note...I did not edit it; df did}

I don't need much proof; if your cattle breeding program results in a higher percent of females that make fertile cows with longevity, then your phenotypic selection must be working.

Then again, if you're convinced the parent stock should not be measured, only the offspring, then there does not seem to be much use to discuss the parents.

Then on another topic DF said:

                  I have often wondered what the beef industry would look like if the first EPD was Stayability instead of Weaning Weight.

When did I ever say or infer that parent stock should not be measured?.  What am I missing, I thought EPD measured "only the offspring"......the EXPECTED PROGENY difference?    Haven't cattle always been selected for STAYABILITY by culling those with functional problems...... long before weaning weight ?    How did numerical EPD affect the look of the beef industry, isn't it just another tool to measure trait differences?   So Mike, when you posted the anonymous quote:

The more refined I get in my views, the shorter my conversations with others seem to become. Those who are P.O'd at the failures of the current system want promises from an alternative. I am leery that genetics are not necessarily the source of their problems.

AMEN   Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Wed Aug 20, 2014 8:05 am

Larry wrote on 10-18-2011

Mark Day asked:

Do you have a 2nd most favorite look in cattle?

Not really......being a strong believer in form following functional selection for whatever purpose, beyond that, I have no sequential list of my favorite looks in cattle.....what is, is.....whatever will be, will be  

Dylan wrote:

Larry, what is, and or why is, "the trivial "soft brownish" tone between the calf's rear legs rather than being as "jet black as a crow"" preferred? What correlations with other positive functional traits have you observed, if any?

Beyond John D's description of his experience with his particular group of "shoshone cattle", "the trivial soft brownish" tone is just another  characteristic I've observed as becoming much more common in this isolated population.    When I was "searching" in Canada back in the early 70's, Angus purity was questionable if the cattle were not completely black as a crow.....which was contrary to when the breed was formed and "mossy black" was often preferred.....and  if Angus didn't have white long hairs intermixed in their tail, they were suspected of being mixed with Galloway, reputed to be a breed that had "lesser beef quality" than what was preferred in Angus.     I have no idea whether or not some of my more favored characters are correlated with shades of color, or whether it just happens by circumstance... or if black is a color or an absence of color.    I have been told by my elders and also observed that "fineness" on the outside is highly correlated with "fineness of flesh on the inside", for whatever that is opposed to large boned "coarse" types.....of any color.

This cow below to me appears very functional, as well I find her very aesthetically appealing.

When you say, " I got tired of all the improbable high expectations seeking non-renewable perfection.", am I correct in assuming that now your expectations of renewal of the above cow for example are probable due to the predictability of your breeding system and or approach? Or are your expectations simply more probable because they have been reduced regardless of the breeding system? Or is it a combination of the two? If I was able to expect to renew the cow above with probable expectation I would be ecstatic.  


Still expecting to get south for a visit.

I would be ecstatic too if I could reproduce "this cow" with unerred regularity.....but then again if they became so common, we would likely become bored just taking them for granted, however, the aesthetic symmetry of a very functional female is always very appealing to the eye .....and I suppose that is one of several reasons why John purchased this cow.      The historic track record of the registered industry's parent selection for near overall perfection with  subsequent high expectation speaks for itself.

As you know, establishing certain characteristic "genetic truths" to inprove the repeatability of those characters in a population is a time consuming proposition "regardless of the breeding system".    Trying to fill the holes, it is common to expect more than we get......and I expect that during our visit we would likely spend 95% of our time discussing examples of what I envision rather than looking at my cattle, many of whom would likely be disappointing to you.   Nevertheless, I would greatly enjoy visiting with you about the possibilities to improve the economics of the beef  business rather than the impossible dreams tradition tends to be addicted to......  

LL in the vicinity of a more simple world dealing with reality, where this troublesome beet harvest has again been delayed for several days since it rained on my parade...... again.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:09 pm

Jeff Mundrof wrote on 11/2/2011

As reticent as I am to join the cast of characters here at KC, now that corn harvest is done here I will venture out to ask Larry a question or two about the future. I hope he has his crystal ball warmed up. His latest post left me with mixed emotions. I have a great hope for the future of beef production, but as usual the future is simultaneously coming too fast and too slow. I am embarking on a journey to build two closed populations and test the crosses myself, and then I read "no way Jose".

Fortunately I am not developing my own strain on the maternal strain, I am trying my best to replicate Shoshone. On the terminal side I do hope to kick the can a little further down the road in a positive way. I want to pump the most product and efficiency into the seedless fruit that I can and I think that to do it neither strain will look like the ideal seedless fruit.

I want to find out how much a functional well adapted yellow can really produce on the terminal side, can she raise oranges, or maybe even grapefruit, and still remain functional and how much will this cost in a world where nothing is free? How far out of balance will a lemon bred to a pomelo be and how hard will it be on the tree?

Hilly wrote:
I see this as a big gut check and pride crippling challenge for me going forward, will I give in and contaminate the pool or will I hold the independent line long enough for other independents to come along with the right piece of paper to complement a need and move the front forward.

I see this as well, and I hope there are enough of us willing to experiment long enough to answer the questions I have, and ones I don't now know enough to ask. I think that in order to make this work we will have to be like Thomas Edison when he said:

Results? Why, man, I have gotten lots of results! If I find 10,000 ways something won't work, I haven't failed. I am not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is often a step forward....

Jeff, just north of the show me state, really glad I grew into my pants
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:13 pm

Ben Loyning wrote on 11/2/2011

Larry, I just got home from preg testing for a neighbor of ours who is also a big bull customer of yours. What struck me all day was how many of the "great" cows from the Shoshone strain came through the chute. Hell I bet 6157, 6357, and 3116 came through 30 times a piece. While they weren't the originals I bet they weren't to much different in actual commercial production value. I have been fortunate to be able to watch what your genetics have done for this herd, the transformation that has taken place has been absolutely amazing. The prepotency is incredible, your bulls have changed the type of this herd within just a couple of generations. Watching this transformation is what drove me seek you out in the first place. These days I spend preg checking, my visits to you, and the results in my herd keep me going strong. I was tickled when the fellow that owns the cattle told me that "we bought some bulls from ____ _____ and they were alright but those Shoshone bulls out bred them I'll bet five to one. They are horny little sonsabitches." They are happy customers.

Ben Loyning, In the vicinity of being in awe of what prepotent genetics can do.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Sat Aug 30, 2014 3:44 am

Larry wrote on 11/1/2011

Dylan commented:
Larry, thank you,
I will always be a sucker for the aesthetic symmetry of a very functional female.
Re, improving the economics of the beef business, that answer will vary depending on which segment of the industry one is referring to. Unfortunenately the predatory segmented nature of the beef chain almost inevitably has one segment prospering at the expense of another relatively speaking. The cowcalf producer as a perpetual price taker has very limited financial leverage other than what is afforded by occasional favorable market conditions, if it could even be qualified as such. By default, control of expenses and overall production efficiency are the primary areas in which to improve enterprise viability. Given this production reality the question that strikes me is the relative importance of the genetic component of a cowcalf enterprise. In my experience most seedstock producers exaggerate the role of genetics, and at the same time this exaggerated claim is contrasted by the disastorous results like Bootheel shared with the "Show Me" heifers. Over the years I have had similar results with supposed quality stock. This begs the question is it simply poor genetics or is it simply a function of being maladapted. Is adaptation of genetics more imporatant then the gentics themselves when it comes to producing under differing environmental and or management environments. Put another way, how much of succesful adaptation is genetic and how much is simply a function of time?

MVCatt asked:
A question for Larry...
From Tru-Line pg 11. From Tru-Line pg 11. I was wondering what your personal observations have been over the last 28 years as far as hybrid vigor in the maternal units being necessary?
"In the near future, a single specific cross using extreme pure line strains as diverse parentage, both maternally and paternally, may be the most efficient as shown in Exhibit 5. However, ongoing research relative to overall basic maintenance comparisions along with the hardiness of these kinds of maternal units first needs to be thoroughly evaluated. This will determine if hybrid vigor is necessary in the cow to compliment her functioning ability."

On my birthday, the crux of Mark Day's post quoting Seth Godin's Form and Function is:
"When the form changes, so does the underlying business model, which of course changes the function as well"......"The question that gets asked about technology, the one that is almost always precisely the wrong question is, "How does this advance help our business?" The correct question is, "how does this advance undermine our business model and require us/enable us to build a new one?".......When a change in form comes to your industry, the first thing to discover is how it will change the function." [/b][/i]

As reiterated by Dylan's comments, we have so many controversial questions, so few black & white solutions for each individual operation. Our first concern is always how any change may affect our own business. what works for one environment may not work in another. The modern day technology of the internet expands our topsy turvy cattle breeding world and here on KC, the focus is often aimed at undermining the tradional business models. Consequently, the battles of wit and quip ensue, some fight fire with fire rather than with water, some battle nonsense with nonsense rather than with common sense....but whatever we do, keeping things in perspective while maintaining a sense of humor always relieves stress.

The cast of characters on KC have more than their fair share of intertwined creative humor, sick or otherwise.....Jack confesses to lookin for giant pansies in all the wrong places and a couple of other self-appointed fearless and bold leaders of this movement to build a new business model are a modern day Michigan farmer and a Missouri cowboy......both short-haired wannabe cattle breeders, and from their classic picture consorting together, I wondered if Bootheels unique coiled looking trouser bottoms are a new trendy fashion .....or a functional protective device against snake/dog bites and whatever else lurks in the swamps of Missouri.....or an aid to to keep him from slipping off his horse.....or to cushion the buttings from his goats......or just plain ole leg supports.

Among my legacy of associates there is also Hilly and DV and from pictures I noticed how they changed from childhood to manhood. We all enjoy pictures..... I imagined the Canadian Giant Pansy's curly golden locks were similar to those of the Guardian of the Two Dot Bridge whilst he lived in Kentucky.....likely kicked out of Nebraska when it was fashionable for cowboys to go from battling Indians to hippy' as a Montanan riding his Texas Longhorn, environmental forces have advanced his selection from "4 legs, 2 nuts, a stick and a nose" to developing a fetish for feet in his bulls, changing function with serious inquiries about going from black, multi-colored, and now to is the wrong question to ask DV, "how does this selection for UNEDIBLE characters help you in the BEEF business?".....and since DV was once focused on carcass values, is the correct question to ask DV "are you making progress or are you regressing to start anew from the ground up rather than traditionally working from the top down?" Smile

Hilly seems to be a BTO, and from the pool picture, I see he now favors a shaven head and swimming in crystal clear tropical blue waters while Bootheel jumps from trees into the murky waters of his environment, "trying really hard to think about cattle", confessing to sleepless nights while DV and Jack have finally matured into contented cowboys who can sleep anytime,, the dog cozying up to DV is not the artists rendition of Jack without his hat, and I don't know whether Bootheel's head sees things upside down or not.. ....artists always see things a little differently than the "medium" of us.

And of course, there is the head of this group, Kentucky Colonel Fescue Whiskers, who is more concerned about the hair on his cattle than on his head, who has often changed his favorite "look" of cattle now confesses:

I photographed her below in 2006 at 6 years of age; still not crazy about her "type", brought the bull home to use.Crossed on my "beefier" types, the daughters are feminine, perfect udder/teat , and not overly milky. I`m going to make more of her to have more of him to "cross" on beefier types, though on their own, I`m not overly fond of them

now I`ve been very honest; now admit it, don`t you like the cow pictured below "better" ...taken the same year, in the same pasture?
Are they different "type" cows...or the same type of differing degrees?


Bootheel, still trying really hard to think about cattle, in one of his rare more serious moments, responded:

Pictture judging is a booger Mike. I am not that picky, but yeah I like the last PICTURE the best. I don't believe either one of them would be too problematic for commercial profit, whether bred to their respective equal, or crossed to FIX. I am still reeling from the udder quality some 3 months later. I thought I had some good uddered cows, but the forudder attachment(yes for not 4) is unparalleled by any herd or line of Angus cattle I have seen. Is it neccessary to have such udder? Maybe not, but I would like the whole cow to wear out at the same time, rather than cull for feet, or udders, legs, empty bellies, etc.

I think Bootheel may be hanging around the troll too much as of late with his culling criteria based on unedible characters. Having the distinct advantage of being around these two cows for several years, about the only functional difference I could actually scientifically measure is that one cow gives more to her calf. Like Dylan, most of us are suckers "for the aesthetic symmetry of a very functional female", it all becomes a matter of personal preference where beauty in the eye of the beholder overules economic significance.

I'm trying really hard to keep up with the Kentucky Colonel's crossing adventures.... he recently informed me that Gavin told him that what he is doing in a small way "is the aim of us doing our population genetics".....that the "ultimate is to have a number of closed herds all selecting intensively for a single characteristics ( you can make faster progress doing that ) then we cross them and sell to the commercial rancher. How about twice as much meat per lbs of drymatter, all with 4 allels of tenderness gene, calving 98% and vigorous. It is possible and one day will be achieved".
These high ambitions come from an old man (guided by Confucius) with a closed herd encompassing about 800 cows from 3 herds whose production for 40+ years consists of bulls, beef and cull cows .....who also confesses that it cost him alot in many ways.....those damn dams confound economics in our continual search for that elusive more efficient cow.....I am only aware of two proclaimed by Gavin.

So to partially answer your question Dylan of how much is genetic and a function of time, I do believe the correct question is "how would this advanced system undermine our current business model and require us/enable us to build a new one?"......"When a change in form comes to your industry, the first thing to discover is how it will change the function." The second question asked by MVCatt wondering what my personal obnservations have been over the last 28 years as far as hybrid vigor in the maternal units being necessary.....that seems to be more of an economic question that is both genetic and a function of time in an industry that has become dependent on short term hybrid vigor as opposed to long term built in vigor......a simple but very costly survival of the fittest to instill natural vigor would overcome any "maladapted genetics". To enjoy the benefits of hybrid vigor, the question arises "do we sell the crosses to the commercial rancher per Gavins approach; which is actually no different than what is done now, or do we sell the parts. And the final question is whether or not the end justifies the means.

In order to produce beef with more reliable specificity, the difference would be in the breeding of populations of functional strains developed more exclusively for "crossing"...... a massive undertaking of coordination which one day will be achieved with advanced technolog which never comes free. The dawn of this new era in beef production is just beginning, for better or worse, and change is inevitable. As a simple example Gavin implied all crosses will have 4 allels of tenderness for assurance of outcome, and the holes in one sheet of paper will cover the holes of anothers, not for perfection but for managed complimentarity. When young and ambitious, having no willing cooperators, like Mike in my own small way I tried to do it all within my own herd way Jose'......due to the very nature of genetics, ya just can't stay small and effectively do it all .....and that is why Gavin said the ultimate is to have a number of closed herds.......I would change that to a number of closed populations.

Since the Kentucky Colonel's post stimulated this diatribe of true confessions, I narrowed down my ambitions to start with "the cow". The most difficult decision from my observations over the years was to determine "how much" cow do I want and what do I want her to do and then allow the functional form to evolve.....this would be the opposite of starting with the traditional end product and working backwards trying to please the predatory segmented nature of the beef chain that Dylan alluded to.....isn't that so Dennis?.....just checkin to see if you were payin attention. I never was ambitious enough to want to go into the meat business similar to what Jorgensens and others have done or continue to do.....I think it is a trendy thing called vertical integration, from conception to consumer, from pasture to plate, from generic to niche marketing of organic natural beef....or whatever.....these things complicated my simple mind and much more importantly my life.....but conversely I have observed that most of the failures of any of these "niche" systems stem from the lack of consistency in the end product.....we can do much better with seedless fruit.

While large packing plants can sort our variation accordingly, I evolved to prefer the pace and longevity of a turtle with little regard to whatever the hare does, or how hair and grooming can improve ones looks by watching the show crowd with mist sprayers to grow hair on their cattle during the summer months, and all there other bags of tricks. It's not what's on the outside, it is whats on the inside of the DNA that ultimately counts.

I have noticed, however, a commonality among cattle people, we all want more than we get and the renegades on KC for the most part have very short hair and a deep admiration for the artistry of nature. With beauty in the eye of the beholder, I wanted a cow where her beauty was in her functionality, an unselfish, lower maintenance cow with fewer problems, kinda like Bootheel wanting the whole cow's parts to wear out at the same time.....only for a longer time. I guess I was lucky to sustain vigor in the original nucleus I worked with, but it is a myth to think we can only "fix" the good parts without also "fixing" the not so good parts, yet I didn't want to sacrifice renewability or repeatability....for without that everything else is temporary. My carcass evaluations in the mid 80's helped me to establish an acceptable growth rate and size without sacrificing my other wants I am amazed at how so many people fail to recognize genetic tradeoffs with or without the impact of economics.....that we can sustain a little bit of alot of things, or alot of a few things, but never alot of everything, so pick your poison..... very carefully

LL back in the saddle again taking a short break after completing a muddy beet harvest with only two trucks left still running, the others are in the hospital awaiting their transplants.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Sun Aug 31, 2014 9:30 am

Larry wrote on 11-11-2011

From the comments following my last post, sometimes I feel like a nut, sometimes I don't, I always like dark chocolate, with or without nuts Very Happy

Keeping up with my summaries of KC so Bootheel doesn't have to study so much.....says he's still in need of improvement however we do it. Bob and Ben as commercial men are happy using prepotency. Tee Dee posted his picture of Mack Jacknamee to keep Laree from getting grumpee if he thinks no one is listening to me. Dennis has stalled the stampede, his dog Grover is waiting for him to decide what the hell to do next watching Dennis wonder who to listen to. Being south of Dennis, my wife's dog Mister, learning from his female master, tells me when and what he wants me to took awhile but I finally learned who to listen to. Being north of Dennis, Hilly living in his own world infers that this listening thing is completely optional. Jeff's going to raise pomelos from lemon trees while Heath brings mutations into the mix. From Mike and Dylans extensive picture galleries in their gardens of Eden, I can't tell who's a pud and who isn't, or which would be the better place to live.....north or southeast of me. To the south, Kent and CC are struggling near the center of a drougth. Mark's primary concern is miles of fence per cow, having trouble deciding which cows to eat and which to breed.

A rose by any other name is still a rose so Dennis is temporarily sidetracked interpreting the alias names of who are real people and who are other things over on 4.9. Grassfarmer, the red headed Scotsmen who moved to westerm Canada breeding red cattle with an eastern Chinese sounding name formed in the British Isles from F1's in the 1940's, understands English but is misunderstood by some 'Mericans who don't listen very carefully, has a real name of Iian which sounds like Eeon in modern 'Merican.....being a grass farmer, he straightened out OT on the real reason why washy green grass doesn't have the OOOOMMPF, but confesses to some genetic confusion when he signed off with:

"......WESTERN neighbor of Hilly, suffering some inbred depression of my own for getting beat up by a beet farmer, misunderstood by some more 'mericans and hoping that Kendra will clarify it all Smile

Lots to comment on here on KC. Firstly, I can't beat up anybody and I must apologize for not knowing where east and west starts or stops in a round world, just like I don't know where inbreeding depression and hybrid vigor starts and stops; nor do I know where cross breeding and pure breeding stops or starts. Someone once drew a line called the equator to separate the north from the south so I'm guessing progression and regression is from wherever we draw a line from wherever we are at the moment. Bob's has all his ducks in a row with his priorities of life and knows it's all a percentage thing with cattle. I'm still waitin for someone to draw the lines where the "medium" is where all the different genetic trade-offs start and stop. Perhaps DF could clarify these things with data but haven't heard from him lately, so I'm leaving it to Kendra to help me clarify all the foregoing.

Secondly, some of you 'Mericans may have become aware of my own personal problem with trade-offs. I discovered I have this mutative sixth sense telepathic gene that enables me to also listen to what cows tell me to do and to see things before they happen.. However, the trade-off is that this telepathic gene dominates my latent communicative genes. Therefore, I readily admit that I need Kendra to complement my shortcomings, commonly referred to here as covering the holes with each others sheets of paper.

During my sleep last night, I received a telepathic message. I think it must've been from Kendra.. The message was that my sentences are way too long, that I try to say too much at one time; and my thought processes lack proper sequence which result in jumbled double talk to people who only have the five common senses....who only see things as they happen. OK Kendra, I'm gonna start over with Eeon's genetic confusion with shorter sentences from whence he said:

Problem is some of us guys, or at least me, are way behind in this game. I don't have the prepotent strain of cattle that would make it "easy", there isn't anywhere to go to buy it either because it doesn't exist in our breed.

OHMIGOSH, in my confusion, I would've thought that Eeon was way ahead in the game. His direction from the beginning in the 1940's is at least towards establishing a type he likes. Eeon says his confusion began with Gosey's “Crossbreeding: The Forgotten Tool”. Dennis, isn't that title one of the greater misnomers of all time? With a name like Gosey, without a pedigree I have no idea which genes he inherited. I'm fairly certain he didn't inherit the genes that provide hindsight and foresight. Seein things only as they happen, Gosey must've forgotten that for the last fifty or so years the 'merican beef industry has been crossing this with that. Lacking foresight Dr. Gosey clearly cannot see what happens after mongrelization. To clarify this paragraph, I'm asking DV to interpret the alias names of our breeds and the things they really represent for these scientific reasearch clubs. I don't know if they don't know how crossbreeding changes as breeds change.

Enough on that. To move on , let's analyze how the Kentucky Colonel's crossing adventures evolved to his current status. He simply named his new breeds A, B, & C, starting over at the beginning of the alphabet. Gavin from down under either in the far east or west told Mike that what he is doing in a small way "is the aim of us doing our population genetics".....that the "ultimate is to have a number of closed herds all selecting intensively for a single characteristics ( you can make faster progress doing that ) then we cross them and sell to the commercial rancher. How about twice as much meat per lbs of drymatter, all with 4 allels of tenderness gene, calving 98% and vigorous. It is possible and one day will be achieved".

Obviously Gavin inherited his sixth sense gene from a different tribe. His communications are short and lack detail. Gavin uses "Y" to make a new Zealander. I use "X" cause everyone knows "X" comes before "Y" to produce Z seedless fruit at the very end of the entire alphabet. Because the Kentucky Colonel was the first member of his tribe to be college educated, he followed the learned. He jumbled up all the letters of the alphabet striving to be First making an F1, then an F2, F3, F4, F5, F6, F7, F8, F9 and finally to an F10. To achieve the maximum heterosis in a single lifetime using all the letters of the alphabet, using this scale, a perfect F10 would be the peak of success.

Not having a college eduction, I lack the capability to draw a line to see where the medium of each of us all starts and stops in this range of 1 to 10. However, having this inherited sixth sense to see what happens before it happens, unlike Mike, I don't want to start all over again. Mike simply used his five common senses to look back and see why breeds were Formed from mongrelization centuries ago.

Enough on that. I already know Kendra will grade me a "B" for brevity. a "C" for clarity but those "A's" require a lot of disciplined effort, don't they Mike? Smile

LL, needin stilts to keep up with Bootheel while just searching for switches to lighten and brighten Tom's craving for illumination....guessin` so he can see when Jack cometh for revenge.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Mon Sep 01, 2014 5:14 am

Larry wrote on 11-13-2011

GF wrote:

On the name thing Larry it's actually Iain so maybe that should be Eoen in 'merican? It's confusing I know - Iain is said to be an anglisised version of the Scottish Gaelic for "John". But most people spell my name Ian as that is the more common spelling and is the modern English version of Iain. Leading me to wonder why the English feel the need to use Ian as an anglisised version of Iain which is already an anglisised version of the Gaelic John. Why don't the English just use John? Smile

Thanks Iain, Eoen, Jon or Juan for helping me keep the letters of your birth name in the proper sequence. I'll associate the "I" with the "E" sound like in cattlemania /ma-ne-a, nya/ per my English dictionary. I was taught "I" comes before "E" except after "C". In beliEF the "F" comes after "E". The deCEIt is when "P" precedes "F", like in the famous Angus bull named Pfred. This made me wonder if MK's Felix bull would've become infamous if he'd spelled his name "Phealyx" in proper 'merican..... but he's not a "P" bull (not to be confused with Pharo which sounds like Farrow), he's one of Mikes restored model "A" north A-mericanized bulls. I was once confused about my mexican 'merican friend's name "Haysoose" until he spelled it for me.... J-e-s-u-s. I hope you can plainly see and understand why a jumbled up alphabet with different sounds confuses me. Luing (if that's the correct spelling) still sounds Chinese to me. I'm guessin the reason DV can interpret names so well is because he can understand the native north or south AmerCIAn tongue.....dang, with my mind still on Ian, my fingers automatically typed the "i" in the wrong sequence......maybe I ought to use Webster's pronunciation - / A 'MER-A-KAN /.

I'm sure ya'll recognize that the above paragraph is a word for word transcript of the telepathic message relayed to me by Bootheel.....I'm just the messenger.....yep, he definitely needs some self-improvement.

DF wrote:

I think I am periodically guilty of making assumptions of a person after reading one article they wrote. Without the proper context, I am incline to think they have a certain mindset when in fact, the one article may not give the complete story. Do any of you feel this way?

Jim Gosey, now retired from UNL, is highly respected for his work. Nebraska cattlemen did get upset with him over two issues, both of which were rooted in the data from MARC. The first was the value of a crossbred cow and the second was the increased costs of maintaining large cows vs small and medium cows. The MARC data supported a crossbred cow over straightbred cows in commercial setting and favored the 1200 lb cows over the larger 1400 lb cows.

I suspect Gosey knows a fair amount about planned crossbreeding program and is no fan of mongrolization. As a geneticist but also as a cattleman, he understands the value of a simple breeding program and the wreck that occured in the 70's and 80's (and even 90's) when the breeding program lacked focus and "reality".

I believe his own personal herd reflects that as he has crossbred cows that are small in comparison to modern crossbred cows. (The SimAngus herd he built at UNL sells bulls into the research herd in the Sandhills to Rick Funston, where the mature size is much less than some other famous herds in that area, except for Deserets cows.)

I don't know of any geneticist that are big fans of 3-breed rotations. They are too complicated and unmanagable. The most common breeding programs are probably straightbreeding, 2-breed rotation, 2-breed hybrids (such as continual use of SimAngus) and buying (maternal?) females and using terminal breeds. There is certainly a fair amount of mongrolization but it is not approved by any geneticist that I know.

It will be interesting if Angus becomes the only breed in the US...........

Excellent post DF, thank you for providing me with the opportunity to undo some things I've done. My comments were meant to be directed at the title & contents of the article, not to demean or reflect the complete story of the author. My wife continually reprimands me for my exaggerated teasing, blowing things up way out of proportion or context to a point of ridiculousness. She gives me that "look" telling me people never know if I'm serious or not......I'd rather just think of it as stretching the truth with sick or humiliating humor....just doin what seems to come naturally on KC. : )

I honestly and sincerely do have two Jim's (not to be confused with the two JIMMERS) who are among my very favorite and respected academics with practical minds, Dr. Jim Gosey of UNL and Dr. Jim Brinks of CSU. When I first met Brinks years ago, he was closely involved with the development of the Hereford Prospector Line......later abandoned from genetic problems. I studied his research paper analysis of the Line One Herefords and spent a few years of association with him when he was on TAD analyzing the data of the Wye herd at UMF. The work of these two Jim's along with that at MARC helped to reaffirm my directional thought processes, not how to make the best with what is, but what could be.
Your igniting statement "It will be interesting if Angus becomes the only breed in the US..........." blew my mind beyond the point of ridiculousness, surely you jest. From an academia standpoint, please help me put the bits and pieces back together again.

What is a genetic mongrel?
What is a breed?
What is the genetic difference between a crossbred/straightbred cow?
What is the genetic difference between n a small or modern crossbred cow?
What is the genetic difference between a registered and a commercial cow?
What is a MARC composite, are they all still active and are they registered breeds?
What is the genetic difference between MARC composites and other composites?
Wlhat is the genetic difference between a closed herd , a closed population, and an isolated breed?

I have many more "What is's" to start with, these are a few that inquisitive minds would like to know before we start with the "What if's".

LL, just searching for help to put Humpty Dumpty back together again.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Mon Sep 01, 2014 5:18 am

Larry wrote on 11-16-2011

Life is full of disappointments. Kendra sent me my mid-term report card. At first glance I thought I did very well getting one star in each category, without any "R's, I expected at least two stars in the three "P's", none for Brevity......but then I read what a star meant.

Advanced Shop Skills *
Phonics *
Parapsychology *
Geography *
Spelling *
Nursery Rhymes *
Brevity *
Perseverance *

*Due to No Child Left Behind mandates, the validity of any grades will be determined by the "level of understanding" demonstrated by your students.

Uh ohhhhh, I think I'm in trouble, perplexed at how I'm gonna determine this overall level of understanding. So, my focus will be towards improving "understanding". Not knowing where understanding starts and stops, I was going to begin anew with the answers to my first few "what is" questions.... clarifying the terms could help me determine the overall validity of research data from an ACADEMIC G-E-N-E-T-I-C viewpoint. I had another disappointing moment when all I got was a tiny little smiley from their spokesman on KC, better known as DF. Lacking a PHD, it's perplexing to know just where to start if academia doesn't understand that nothing has changed much since DF mentioned "the wrecks that occured in the 70's and 80's (and even 90's) when the breeding program lacked focus and 'reality' ". I didn't understand why he didn't include the wrecks of the 50's and 60's when academia supported "little & fat", the same ones who later helped initiate the change to "bigger mean lean machines" and the subsequent wrecks. But now I understand DF was just too young to have first hand experience with those wrecks.

Kent offered some understanding for these continuous wrecks when he said, his Ag professor said, that 50% of everything currently taught will be wrong. That's the flippin' odds of a coin that we must all deal with. Assuming AP is 100% right, my sixth sense sees that the academic research data in 2020 will mention the wrecks of the first decade of the 2000's when the breeding programs lacked focus and "reality". This natural phenomena of history repeating itself in a round world that keeps on a turnin' seems understandable. What's more difficult to understand is whether all the research data helps, hinders or adds to our continuity of wrecks.

During these interim periods, for some measured assurance of progress, I understand why the registered industry needed to focus on standardized defect warranty's, offer optional insurance policies and replace functional phenotypic rankings with EPD. We simply just couldn't get what we see. Focusing on that stuff, we all understand the "reality" that the costs for these "policy's" must be built into the system which are ultimately passed on down to the beef producers. Beef producers have no one to pass down these prices of progress onto. So, it is one of my intentions here to improve the overall understanding of why academia is now beating the drums for more efficiency in the cow/calf sector.

MK says a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. The question is do we make the weakest link stronger or the stronger links weaker if we're mandated to leave no child behind. The race to littler cows is underway, little Jimmer says Mr. P says we need to cull all our cows who wean over 600# of calf.....that ranches were paid for with 400-450 pounders and are going broke today with 600-700 pounders. Hilly says his neighbors say they are going broke with bigger and bigger cattle. Even OT says he's going to sell all his 1400# cows while they still have some value, keeping those productive 1100 pounders. Seems eze e'nuff to understand how independent minds can be "crossed" with short-sighted lemming eyes. I'm hoping you now better understand how all these trade-off things work.

Please understand I'm not blaming academia for our wrecks or for what is, just pointing out how their 20/20 hindsight data collection lacks the foresight to progressively improve the overall level of understanding. So far at least, we're still free to choose our own livelihoods. Bootheel has a shorter handle on these kinds of things than I do with diversification , but I didn't lose any goats today. In one of his more cantankerous moods, he says "some days I wonder why anyone would read all the crap here, but some of us enjoy it for varying reasons....". What is the difference between crap and enjoyment? Enjoyment sometimes comes from debating controversial topics about all the crap measuring this and that, critiquing pedigrees and bulls or cows, always about things that have already happened, of things we cannot wish or wash away under the Two Dot bridge.

Presuming most of the crowd on KC are reading the same book, I can understand why some just can't get past the old testament and move onto the new that shows us another more ceremonial sacrificial offerings required to please our Gods. While it has a noble intent, if we follow the mandate of No Child Left Behind, that means "we cannot travel until the others are ready, a man that travels alone can start anytime". MK talks about building bridges for others to follow.

Kendra says the KC posts are from intelligent, passionate, and “hungry” people, who intellectually know better, but can’t seem to “pull the trigger”......that self-preservation can be very demanding.....that we struggle, barren to insatiable....that independent thought is not encouraged or rewarded, as it does not produce an answer concise enough in the allotted answer space.....that it is often discredited and depicted as inferior.....that conformity is rewarded, praised, and recognized as being superior.....that collaboration indirectly is discouraged as it threatens the sharing of the coveted "prized pupil" position.

Jack is in the vicinity of no calf left behind. Some days I am in DV's vicinity of wondering what the hell to do next, why do I do what I do, what does it matter, who really cares.....and then I see a group of nice cows; a group of nice heifers in Hilly's pasture he says are peas in a pod; a message from Bob, Ben, Joe, Tom, Perry, Gary, Bill, John and everyone; and so when all is said and done, these things fill me with "pride and fulfillment, putting big smiles in my heart"...not like the tiny one DF gave me. Many to thank. Ken Clark, not to be confused with KC, said something like joy rises in him like a summer mornin' when he is in the company of his cattle and friends.

We all have a different purpose in life. and I owe a special thank you to Kendra for her inspirational thoughts that I've borrowed from her for this post. Maybe we could cross her insight with hindsight and foresight to make a better 3-way composite even though DF says these multi-crosses are not approved by any geneticists that he knows of : ). Then as CC says, like Baxter Black says, we'll leave this mongrel on MK's unwanted driveway to take care of after that. Eddie says he'd like to keep the "what is" discussions going....I don't think we'll ever have to worry about that on KC Smile

Over time we all observe some of the same things. Most of us concur with the generality of the ND article submitted by OT - Size Matters in the Cow Calf Business. We all know there is a hell've lot more to this business then just buying a good set of scales. What is always lacking in these kind of periodicals is the intricate details of how to get to where we want to go. With our independent mindsets, I suppose we do want concise answers for whatever our alloted space allows. And OT is partially right, I have been an advocate of stabilizing a certain TYPE of cow, but the size of that cow is a matter of personal preference for whatever number of them he can run in his alloted space.

So, to reach some better overall understanding, I'll defer to what MK wrote:

This a bit reflective, a bit futuristic, and all hypothetical...
LL, you did a trait relationship chart on 4 herds that were for the most part closed at the time...1988 maybe, or before....not long after the first published AAA sire summary

My trait relationship study consisted of sires from the entire sire summary. The individual herd study was to reaffirm the relationships in smaller populations, closed herds vs. open herds etc...which also involved distributions and these things continue to be ongoing projects whether public or private.

Had those four herds formed a Tru-Line co-op, what do you suppose it would, or could , look like today? You had 3 lines/colors in mind, with Cragie, maybe 4? One performance herd had Angus and Chars, maybe Simmy, ...the other had Herefords and Angus, would soon add was Wye..

I hadn't discovered my sixth sense yet so I couldn't even venture a good guess what those four herds might look like today since I had no intimate familiarity with others stock Smile I wasn't thinking about just those few particular herds, I was thinking it would consist of more like 500 partial herds expecting about a 5% success rate over idealistic collaborated effort, with a central point to authenticate the results for credibility.....lots of intricate details in the application, one step at a time over time......

Given your greater understanding of human nature today, do you think Tru-line could exist in democratic co-operative fashion, or would it need to be controlled by one person; hopefully, with a means of succession?

Human nature hasn't changed, I changed to become more tolerant Smile Any business venture, co-operative public or private, has a CEO with its board of directors and membership, minority and majority stockholders etc. in conjunction with the established by-laws. Even the universal Catholic church has it's Pope, some better or worse than others, who have followed the same basic doctrine for over 2000 years. It seems to be natural human nature to split off into separate branches to grow pomelos on a lemon tree. Enduring partnerships are rare, marriage has a 50% divorce rate for better or worse, in sickness and in health....... Smile

LL in the vicinity of the insatiable evolving with an affinity for small business with big smiles.....whether we understand the reasons why or not.
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Mon Sep 22, 2014 7:18 am

Larry wrote on 11-17-2011

MKeeney wrote:

I was thinking it would consist of more like 500 partial herds expecting about a 5% success rate over time

I don`t like those odds; maybe it wasn`t human nature that prevented Tru-Line formation; maybe it was satistics...but of course, 500 partial herds with a 5% success rate over 500 years would create a lot of good cattle  but the same question arises, if it takes 95% milk to make the cream, who drinks the milk?

Geez Mike, now your asking me to explain my explanations. Smile     In that stream where you go a fishing for time, I wondered if you spent those coupla hours you caught reading very slowly and thoroughly Kent's ENTIRE post, .   Did you also read between the lines, or,  did you just skim through it?    For those like CC who want "my reflections" to be a learning place, I'd suggest any serious minded cattle breeder spend more than a few hours not just reading, but digesting the content of that Wagyu website history to contemplate the effects over time of inbreeding, incrossing, outcrossing & crossbreeding;  selection methodology to fix traits;  and time.   It is somewhat correlated to  MK's concerns.

"Reflections by LL" is by no means a "how to" encyclopedia,  it is simply a public chronology sharing my own learning process.     I often use examples, quotes, statements or parables to compare common principles that can be applied to different situations.   Some might consider it to be an educational process, hence I plagiarized Kendra's words and I apologize if they were taken out of context.   I thought they were too worthy for only me to hear.   Now MK wants me to correlate milk and cream with beef  breeding.   Smile   MK's fishin' already taught him who drinks the milk and who makes the cream so I'll skip that and talk about his not liking the odds.

OK, first let's look at the odds of traditional methodology - of all the thousands of bulls born every year, of those hundreds that might be evaluated, how many end up in the "top" 5% of the breed in even just a single trait?   If your fishin' to catch the biggest fish in the stream,  the "cream of the crop", what percent is that of the ENTIRE crop?    What percent get trophies?   Wouldn't it be difficult to quantify or even be significant?

Of all the thousands or millions of cows alive today, what percent are chosen to be ET' cows?    Of those chosen, what percent are successfully improving themselves?

After 200 years of traditional selection,  compared to 500 years of traditional selection from now,  what will be the percentage of "good cattle" then compared to now?

Oh, I almost forgot  - MK, didn't  you remember once we learned how to HOMOgenize milk, whoever drinks it gets an equal amount of've gotta quit reverting back, just pull the trigger    Smile

LL wondering when genuine fair value exchange will be our first consideration
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Sun Oct 12, 2014 5:28 pm

on 11/18/2011 Larry wrote...

My many thanks go to Dennis for clearly clearing up the mystery behind Larkota's #190 cow's unusual capabilities.....beautifully structured, expecting her to be a little more emaciated. I'm amazed at what a little gene splicing here and there can do to speed up evolution. No doubt there will be some trial and error along the way. Brian saw what happened when he put the cart before the horse....putting his 190 cow's embryos into single uddered cows.

I guess whether things are done by gene splicing or otherwise, it takes time to organize the genetics and we all have to start somewhere, Remembering that a picture is worth a thousand words, a few years back my alter boy (alias Fescue Whiskers) and I were seriously considering the publishing of a revised edition of the TruLine booklet, especially designed for those still in kindergarden. It was planned to be a coloring book that came furnished with a free water color paint set with only the 3 or 4 basic primary colors and a mixing board. That way anyone could color the sketchs any color they preferred without the need to provide all the different shades of colors......thus reducing the cost while providing additional educational skills. This would provide a way to learn the special mixing skills to produce the color they wanted......not to mention that Fescue said this four uddered cow was especially made for mixing. I did notice we already have a chocolate and a white cow here on KC. And then Kent needn't wonder how many get it, this voluntary art school could help whomever wants to, to get it Smile Smile

It was my job to provide the visionaries from my sixth sense, Fescue was to provide the organizational skills from all his previous experiences ...... but the project was delayed since we lacked a creative and imaginary artist to sketch this evolutionary futuristic project. We wanted the cream of the crop, nothing less than that would do, and then we found Dennis. So, we've been buttering up to Dennis ever since...DV thinks its cause we like him.

Everyone already knows Fescue is well noted for his caginess and conservatism. So he created Keeneys Corner in order to extract the talents we needed without payin for 'em....kinda a sifting process. Fescue seems good at being able to separate the wheat from the trash. Layin out all the groundwork, my job now is to prepare the blueprint for the design to fulfill everyones needs, collecting and consolidating all this free information. For info purposes only, the "Shoshone collection" was one of Fescue's first experimental trial runs.....cleverly getting Brian to do the assemblying process (obviously Fescue still needs to work on his organizational skiills). I'm cleverly learning how to get others to do my work for me.

So, these collaborative efforts will require the continued efforts of many in order to cleverly extract many more of DV's rembrandts hidden deep inside him. In the meantime I've secured all of Dennis's works in my vault. I noticed in his revised renditions, Bootheel is evolving with his head right side up and Tom D is imitating Bootheel now tucking his pants inside his new cowboy boots....still difficult though to turn a farm boy into a cowboy. Someday, however, Bootheel will have to explain to Fescue how he needs to buy his pants several inches longer to account for shrinkage, hopin' they cover his whiskery, knobby, eastern citified lookin legs. I doubt the headless rabbit will scare the adults in kindergarden, at least a turtle can pull his head in and hide in his shell for protection.

To encourage complete participation, the first chapter is planned to consist of barely recognizable sketches of the participants, in order to remain incognito in public. I plagiarized this idea from Kit when he did this with his easily recognized members whereas the difference is we're goin' stealth like in an opposite direction. .....their goin' backwards and we're goin' forward. To avoid legal patent conflicts and promotion for self-interests, the other difference will be that there will be no story's about the participants, just their alias names. Of course this TruLine coloring book will be copywrited, limited to the KC staff members and commercial beef producers. Any reproduction or other use thereof will be strictly prohibited without the written consent of the artist.

My wife just called to wake me up for dinner, must've dozed off, opened my eyes and looked out the wind'a to see it snowing. She told me I must've been dreamin', heard me talkin' in my sleep. I keep havin' this repeat dream where I can't find my car after I parked it, look everywhere and its never there. Last nite I even dreamed it was just a dream that I couldn't find my car and I tried to wake myself up to prove it was just a dream.....and I couldn't.

LL stuck in MLK's dream land (Martin Luther King)
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PostSubject: Re: Reflections Condensed   Sun Oct 12, 2014 5:32 pm

on 11/20/2011 Larry wrote...

MK wrote:
DV, Larry and I laughed together today; 1800 miles apart, both sitting before our computers. It just like we were sitting at the discussion table in Red Lodge with one noticeable exception; the room was smoke free Smile
But then when things turned serious, I received considerable scolding for wasting too much time studying genetic AAAaaa and BbBbBB in college along with the mechanics of measuring change, when I should have applied myself more diligently in Creative Writing and Art I could understand what you are conceptualizing in pictures, and what he is saying figuratively in least he took time to explain why I`m wearing short pants...I`m hoping he is wrong

And I'm still laughing thinking a few courses in Anthropology would've also helped, figuratively speaking of course.....and if you weren't such a skimmin' know it all, you wood'a known why your pants shrunk Smile With pictures being the universal language ever since the cave dwellers, from stones and chisels, the modern computer has allowed today's Great Chief of the Cave Carvers to record for posterity today's work in progress; conceptually of course.

For now, we can move beyond the need for historic dream interpreters, however, in today's vacuous world along with DV's subjective conceptualitis, we may need some picture interpreters, not meant to be condescending of course. Configuratively though, I'm glad to see DV is trying out his free paint set. But Bootheel and Tom D, hankerin' to be the Corsican brothers, are takin' this artistic stuff way too personally..... both posin' as the new Mack Jacknamee, are plannin' some kind of conspiracy ..... on Tuesday better man your bridge DV......think DV is getting a little concerned, he didn't name the brother's on his last "pumpkin" rendition ....but I could still tell who was who by their pants

To keep this topic from being X-rated, back to art school, I never did like those paint by the number coloring books. DV doesn't either, says he has no sympathy for conformity, says they take away our individuality, our imaginative creativity, needed to utilize all this modern technology ..... properly, like he has...... Smile Exclamation

Three primary colors, MK's rile
Yellow shirt, cagy smile
Shrunken trousers colored in blue
Exposing the red inside of you
Interpretatin' is really, all that I do

Surfin' the waves in bell bottom trousers
Wearin' my ole USCG coat of navy blue
Scatterin' life jackets with all this clownin'
Specially designed to keep ya'll from drownin'
Explainin' the rest will best be done in jest

Surely the future will clarify
What's seen today with the naked eye
So happy my legacy is prophesied to be
Known for all my associates right here on KC
So Happy Thanksgiving everybody

LL in the vicinity of happiness with lots to be thankful for, especially for my recent "Smokin' Allowed" room complete with ceiling exhaust fan to clarify the atmosphere .... specially designed for Mike & Linda's visits here Smile
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