Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Family Traditions.

Exhibiting cattle has been a part of our lives for over 40 years.  Rob first began showing in the Junior Hereford Shows and myself in the YCS - Junior Simmental shows as well as showing for my dad in the early years of the Simmental breed to promote these "exotic" cattle.

Then came the years of junior and 4H shows for our girls along with them helping also at the fall shows, Farm Fair and Agribition.
Stay and her heifer.
 Now as the fall of 2013 approaches we are only attending one fall show, the National Simmental Show will be held at Farm Fair International in Edmonton, AB  during the 40th Anniversary of Farmfair.  We may be only going to one show but this will be one of the biggest strings we have exhibited in the past few years.  9 calendar year calves are getting ready.  5 bulls that will represent the group of bulls that will sell on February 24, 2014 in the Simmental Bull Summit and 4 heifers.  One that is selling at the Headliner Sale at Farmfair

RJY Sweet Satin 30A - sells November 8, 2013
and 2 that will sell on December 14 in Red Deer at Checkers.  The fourth one is owned by Double R Farms - Stacy (Young) Romanyk and her husband Dan.  
 We see the exhibitions as a place to display our program, connect with past and future customers, and educate those that do not have a direct connection to the farm about where their food comes from.

Entries for Farmfair close on October 1st .  Why not join us at this great show.  It will be an exciting time. Hope to see you there.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Weaning Time

Fall has arrived and with it the ritual of weaning.  Several years ago we started to use quiet weans.  The have worked really well for us.  For our bull calves we put them in when we weigh them and leave them in for a couple of weeks.  During that time we also put a creep feeder in the pasture so they can start to get used to grain.  They are content to be with their mommas and the cows are only in discomfort for a couple of days while their milk starts to dry up.  Then when we bring the bull calves home we take them out and they are started on feed.

For our replacement heifers we do the same thing only they stay in until we bring the cows home from grass.  This year we are hoping that will be in November as we had a good year for grass.  The replacements don't need to be on feed before that.  We also find that we have less sickness with them out on grass instead of in dusty pens.

This fall also meant a different sort of weaning for Rob.....our daughter Stacy was married a week ago and I think this picture says it all.

She has a wonderful husband in Dan and we are excited to see what the future holds for them.  She may be married but I think she will always be daddy's little girl,  just like her sister Crystal.

Rob and Crystal - April 2012
I hope that your fall is going well.  We continue to hear of bumper crops and high selling calves at the markets across the Prairies.

Friday, September 20, 2013

A new partnership with an old friend

Several years ago the decision was made for a number of reasons for the Canadian Simmental Association to go back to having their EPD's with information from only our herd book.  We had been incorporated with the American Simmental Association  having North American EPD's previous to that.

Due to some conversations by both board of directors and staff and we are please that as of this fall the EPD's that all breeders are able to use as one of their selections tools will again be North American EPD's incorporating data from both the Canadian and American Simmental Associations herd books.

This will make comparisons of EPD numbers much easier for everyone.  Whether you are looking to purchase an animal in one country or the other their numbers will still be the same when you import them.  When selecting A.I. sires you will also have an idea what the resulting progeny's EPD's will be.  We see this as a positive move for our breed.  The cattle listed on our  website www.highcountrycattle have been updated with the CSA Fall 2013 EPD numbers.  If you would like more information on this check out the CSA's web page.

Fall 2013 CSA Genetic Evaluation
Breed Average
CE   BW    WW    YW    MCE    Milk     MWW    SC    CWT    REA    Fat      Marb
5.5    4.1      66.4     93.7    9.0       26.3       59.4         0.17  31.3      0.55     -0.073   -0.06
Current Population – all calves born in the last 2 ½ years (20112013)
Active Sire – any sire with a calf reported in the last 2 ½ years (20112013)
Active Dam – any dam with a calf reported in the last 2 ½ years (20112013)

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Welcome Back

First of all sorry that it has been months since we have wrote a blog.  It seems like life has gotten in the way. That doesn't mean that things haven't been good just busy.  Here are a few things that have happened in the last 7 months.
  • The first Bull Summit held with Beechinor Bros. and Eagle Ridge Simmentals was a huge success.  Thank you to everyone that attended (standing room only).  Our bulls were very well received averaging over $5500. 
  • Calving went really well, we had a 104% calf crop due to a few sets of twins.  No death losses. We were excited to get the new calves out of The Fleck 59Y
  • We were saddened by the loss of our good friend Lyle Peterson of Bar L7 Simmentals. Just a reminder to all of our farming and ranching friends to be careful each and every moment on the farm.  Take the time that you need.  We miss your phone calls and visits Lyle and your enthusiasm for cattle and in particular the Simmental breed.

  • The spring was late, cold and the feed yard was completely empty when the cows finally went to pasture.  We are thankful for great weather this summer, rain when we needed it lots of sunshine and tons of grass.
  • We golfed lots in the early summer.  Rob tried a few new courses.  He really enjoyed the Sundre Golf Course, and the Black Bull.  Wished we had been able to do more in July and August.
  • We enjoyed many visitors over the summer.  Many from Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and Iowa with Jon and Crystal home twice.
  • I had the opportunity to visit Colombia and the Congress of the Americas.  It was a wonderful trip to see Simmentals working in Colombia and meet some wonderful Simmental breeders.

  • We enjoyed celebrating our youngest daughter Stacy`s wedding just last week. Thank you to all of our friends and family that took the time out of their busy schedule to celebrate with us.  We are so pleased to welcome Dan in to our family and look forward to them developing their herd under Double R Farms.
The next few months will be equally as busy with  us getting fall work done, taking a trip to Illinois and Iowa,  the fall meetings of the Canadian Simmental Association, Rob judging at the Winter Fair in BC and the Toronto Royal, preparing for the National Simmental Show at Farmfair, and getting 6 head ready for the Checkers sale.  Stay tuned we will try to blog about these events.  Until then we wish you a great fall, huge yields on your crops and calves and look forward to visiting soon.