George and I started to take an interest in genetics and the major effect that the cow has on the calf and hence the herd, so we turned our sights to breeding stud cattle and following the genetic lines.
We purchased 3 cows PTIC 2 heifers a bull calf and a bull at the Hollywood Dispersal sale in 2003. George and I then spent some time researching their lines and decided to try embryo transfer. With this in mind we then bought 18 heifers, putting them through an embryo program last year flushing two cows to Newfield's Masterpiece which resulted in 9 embryos. George and I found we really enjoyed this side of things and seemed to have a knack for it. We had now achieved seven calves on the ground from an outstanding heifer that was not yet old enough to be mated, pretty exciting! The vet was very impressed with the way we prepared the cattle, so we decided to continue along this path and we were very motivated.
George and I set about finding good females and attended the Mt Barker sale in January 2005 where we were impressed with the way the cattle were presented.
They were doing it tough in that area at the time but great effort had been put in to have the cattle looking their best possible for the sale. George, Domini (my youngest Daughter) and I arrived at the sale early, catalogue in hand with the cattle we liked marked for interest. We wanted to be sure we had a chance to check out all the cattle we were interested in prior to the sale.
Angus sold first and as the sale continued there didn't seem to be a lot of Grey activity, so with the prices good we ended up buying the first pen we were interested in.
From then on there was no stopping us.
We had set off for the sale intending to purchase around 20 heifers but ended up purchasing 78 in total, all PTIC. We had in fact purchased ALL the pens we had marked for interest in the catalogue.
After a few transport problems and a night spent at Albany, Domini, George and I got the 78 heifers home to Donnybrook the next day.
The Heifers calved down and those calves were sold and the Heifers have now had their second calves, some of who are embryo transfers and the others sired by our Champion Bulls.
In October 2005 I attended the World Congress at Albany Western Australia ( I also took my 87 year young Mother who was involved in the day trips and thoroughly enjoyed the whole affair).
At the special Heifer auction held inside the Albany Golf Club I purchased the top Heifer Southend Z Urban Jewel for $13,500.00c +GST - we believe setting a new record for and unmated Heifer.
Urban Jewel went straight into a flushing program and we have two embryos implanted from her and sired to Pandora Reflection.
We will bring her home now and let her have a calf to Hollywood Dunedin who pumps out very special calves at an average of 29kg. Dunedin has Temperament, Feet, Shoulder and perfect confirmation and is a two time Perth Royal ribbon holder. A very special Silver Bull and son of Pandora Legend.
In January 2006 we purchased five stud cows and calves PTIC from Monterey Stud at the annual sale.
Following Monterey in February we purchased another eight cows and calves PTIC from the Southend Stud annual sale which included the 2003 Perth Royal Show winner and the Grand-dam to the Congress Heifer Southend Z Urban Jewel.
All are calving down nicely and we certainly have some champions amongst them.
Following this in April 2006 George and I attended the National Murray Grey Show and Sale at Albury Wodonga Victoria where we purchased for $8,250.00c + GST the overall Supreme Champion an unmated Heifer named Rogialyn Flirt Z7 (AI) whose Grand Dam we are told was a $5,000.00c embryo with a very interesting story that I was told whist bidding for Flirt...
We also managed to acquire the Senior Champion Cow and calf unit Gratloe Jennifer W35 (who was 1st at the Melbourne Royal 2002) and has a superb bull Calf at foot.
We now have a continual embryo program in place through Richard Hall of Precision Transfers Busselton and are building up numbers.
By gee Richard certainly gets around the Country and if you get the chance to talk cattle with him you will certainly learn from him.
Flirt as we have come to call her will join Jewel in the flushing program at Richards.
As a result of new friendships made at the World Congress I have managed to purchase 40 straws from Yamba Werewolf , 100 straws from Hollywood Casablanca, initially 3 straws then a further 120 straws from Newfield's Masterpiece, 132 straws from Thologong Mortlock, 90 straws from Pandora Reflection, 31 straws from Pandora Legend the father of our much loved and prize winning bull Hollywood Dunedin, 50 straws from Southend Vice Chairman and 20 straws from Southend Ondiong Columbo.
Richard will continue to flush and use semen in preparation for this year using 2nd calver heifers, now numbering 114 to carry embryo transfers.
We believe that temperament is paramount followed by feet so we look there first and no matter what the rest of the animal is like if those first two don't stand out it's off to the butcher.
Once this has been established we look at the pelvic structure and have the animal vet checked for internal correctness and outstanding pelvic conformation then we work our way through the rest, back, shoulder, legs and so on.