Thursday 6 September, 2012
Last month I was fortunate to make a trip to Shetland with the Shetland Cattle Breeders’ Association. Over the three days, we attended Cunningsburgh Show, the biggest on the Islands, and visited a number of Shetland Cattle breeders there.
It was interesting to see the cattle in their native environment and to hear these breeders describe what they, as commercial crofters, are looking for. Some of it was practical – one breeder multisuckles, so a high milk yield is important. Another runs his as hill sucklers, so he only wants enough milk for one healthy calf. Too much may result in problems with mastitis. But some choices were personal – one looked for black feet, another for solid colours. ☺
I did see one heifer calf that I’d have brought home – a dun and white, naturally. Who knows, Santa may be listening. ☺
We also saw Beadies Comrade, a 2011 bull that’s a full brother to our Breeze. The likeness was incredible.
The hospitality of our island hosts was excellent and I think we all had a really good time. Next event is the AGM in October at breeder who is a commercial cattle farmer and keeps Shetlands both for pedigree and commercial breeding.