NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Ideal cattle starter breeds  (Read 8205 times)

Shropshirelass

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • South Shropshire
  • A country lass who loves it all!
Ideal cattle starter breeds
« on: July 22, 2012, 11:59:23 pm »
Hi all any ideas on a certain ideally dual purpose starter breed of cattle to begin working with & to get into showing - I only want a few cattle ideally a few cows & possibly a bull but he would probably end up in the main beef herd which I don't really want so I'd probably start with maybe a trio of cows / heifers. I like the horned breeds - especially Longhorns which we now have 2 lovely girls in the main herd because they were cheap  ::) so they probably wont be to keen to being handled despite them being a lovely quiet pair along with our whole herd of around 90, another breed I like are Herefords & Gloucesters - please no1 suggest Dexters as I do want a propper sized cow :farmer:

Ideally I'm after a quiet traditional British breed - That I can keep a few in calf girls on the farm all year round away from our main herd & to take to a few shows x
Voss Electric Fence

robert waddell

  • Guest
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2012, 08:39:40 am »
what breed is the 90 made up from              hereford is your only one from your writing    but you could try Angus  or any of the Galloway cows    they all fit into a suckler herd and you can show them as well :farmer:

Shropshirelass

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • South Shropshire
  • A country lass who loves it all!
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2012, 08:52:04 am »
The main 90 Beef herd is mixed with a Charolais bull - I'd say there's a few Hereford X's the 2 Longhorns & then mainly Charolais or Limousin X's.

Yeah I do like the Galloways - Especially the belted ones, however I've heard they can be really aggressive & hard to handle, & I don't want a bunch of wild cows on the farm (This is coming from someone who likes lims  :D) - I want dual purpose as the poor quality bull calves would go for slaughter, & the others sold as bulls & I don't want something I have to milk every single day as I don't have time, even though I love the dairy breeds, would it be worth starting off with heifer calves instead? x

robert waddell

  • Guest
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2012, 09:01:36 am »
all the continental breeds can be flighty but they are breeding that out of them now the worst was the Charolais     the mmb had a bull called ecran at stud they had to shoot it as it was so wild and its offspring was the same    hopefully there will be no tracing back to to that one
i think it is Morrison's that is paying a premium for traditional British cattle :farmer:

Shropshirelass

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • South Shropshire
  • A country lass who loves it all!
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2012, 09:14:13 am »
Yes but what do you know of the Galloways themselves - trust me our rare breeds would not be going for sale in markets or the meat in supermarkets, as we have quite a few well known rare breed butchers by us - who we trade direct to, with the majority of our beef & lamb & they own their own small abbotoirs, which are only about 20 mins away give or take & they don't take huge amounts of stock in at a time, which I believe, although the slaughter is not a nice process for anyone it is a necessary one & should be done with as little stress as possible for everyone/thing involved & the lads we use are brill & we've used them for probably 50-60 years, plus taking 2-3 bullocks to market at a time, isn't really worth it & you've got to wait for the rare breed markets to come up as its no good shoving them in a general if you want to get premium prices - basically we make things simple - sell direct to slaughter & cut out the middle man x     

lachlanandmarcus

  • Joined Aug 2010
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2012, 10:32:17 am »
another one to maybe consider is Shorthorn - thats the breed Morrisons have started paying a premium for.

Fronhaul

  • Joined Jun 2011
    • Fronhaul Farm
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2012, 06:56:03 pm »
Don't forget the yellow elephants, South Devons, if temperament is what you are looking for.  Originally dual purpose although now considered a beef breed.  Our first South Devon lived until she was 19 and was an absolute delight to handle.  You will find the odd one with a poor temperament, particularly if someone has slipped some Limousin blood into the mix but generally they are a lovely breed to handle.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2012, 08:34:17 pm »
another one to maybe consider is Shorthorn - thats the breed Morrisons have started paying a premium for.
They pay 20p/kg premium for Shorthorns and 10p/kg premium for Angus and Hereford.

Shropshirelass being in the Welsh Borders (I assume), Hereford might be a good breed to look at.
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Shropshirelass

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • South Shropshire
  • A country lass who loves it all!
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2012, 09:30:18 am »
No south devons & anguses are too big & bulky for me, although we had a nice SD bull years ago & he was one of the calmest & best bulls we had, I do like the shorthorns but its very hard to find animals that are not polled, But I have worked with these & hand milked them & they are very quiet animals & fell in love with them  :farmer: I also do like the herefords as their sooo nice & quiet & we've had a few cows & calves before but never a Bull but often considered them as their really nice & quiet & not too big - so a bull would fit in ideal as we're due to replace our charolais so he could be moved from the pure herd over to the herefords every now & again - any idea on what the shorthorn bulls are like? I've only worked with the cows & calves x

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2012, 10:33:49 am »
Another thought - what about having a small herd of Whitebred Shorthorn?  They're a very rare breed (Critical - category 1; only 60 females were registered in 2011), highly isolated geographically and absolutely delightful.
http://www.whitebredshorthorn.com/breed/index.html

The Blue-Grey cow is the result of a Whitebred Shorthorn bull on a Galloway cow, and she owes her placid nature and milkiness to her dad.  Both parents contribute beefiness and thriftiness.  We keep Blue Greys on our fell.  Two of last year's calves (Angus crosses) fetched £700 recently.  Costs - purchase cost of cow (up to £700 for a bulling heifer) and a daily small bale of hay between eight cows and their followers through the worst of the winter.  Their calves don't fetch the top prices, but in terms of return, these stocky, hairy little sweetnesses are about the best performers on the farm!  :D

Officially the Whitebred Shorthorn cow is a suckler cow, but I know them to be placid and milky so, given the endangered status of the breed, I had considered the Whitebred Shorthorn for my house cow, but then realised that I would hardly be helping the geographical isolation of the breed as the two most active registered breeders are within 5 miles of me!

They'd be something different for you, Shropshirelass, give good beefy calves and rear them well; if you bred pure, you'd qualify for the Morrisons' 20p/kg uplift - and you'd really be helping an endangered breed.

Just a thought.
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Shropshirelass

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • South Shropshire
  • A country lass who loves it all!
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #10 on: July 24, 2012, 11:40:45 am »
Mmm their nice looking but I tend to like mixed color breeds  like the herefords, longhorns, shorthorns, Belted  Galloways ect - sorry I'm being awkward (what about Irish moiled? )x

HappyHippy

  • Guest
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #11 on: July 24, 2012, 01:00:02 pm »
What about Shetland cows ? I know they're a little smaller, but not as wee as Dexters  ;)
Irish Moiled are gorgeous too  :love: :cow: I think Ruth from the RBST keeps them, I'm sure she'd love to tell you all about them if you email her ruth@rbst.org.uk
SO many choices though eh?! Keep us posted  :thumbsup:

mark@farmhouse

  • Joined Mar 2012
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #12 on: July 24, 2012, 09:48:57 pm »
why not try highlander they are a very attreactive breed

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2012, 09:30:42 am »
Hi all any ideas on a certain ideally dual purpose starter breed of cattle to begin working with & to get into showing.
Ideally I'm after a quiet traditional British breed - That I can keep a few in calf girls on the farm all year round away from our main herd & to take to a few shows x

I'm not really sure what you mean by dual purpose - to me that means for milk and beef, but the rest of your post doesn't seem to support that.

We have Shetlands and we love them - they are true dual purpose animal, being the original crofter's house cow. However, that doesn't sound like what you are looking for - sounds like you want a traditional beef animal.

If you want to breed and show, then look around your local show classes - there are never classes for Shetlands, so the only shows we can go to are those with "any other breed" or, better, "any other native breed". If your local shows don't have these, and showing is important, you'd be better to go for a breed that does have classes. Round here, most shows have classes for Highlands, AA and the continentals but it varies from show to show.

We saw some lovely traditional Herefords at the Welsh Smallholder Show, but again, you probably wouldn't want to show these against the more modern Canadian / American type Herefords.

Fronhaul

  • Joined Jun 2011
    • Fronhaul Farm
Re: Ideal cattle starter breeds
« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2012, 10:54:09 am »
Doesn't the Stinking Bishop cheese man (is it Charles Martell?) have Gloucesters?  They are a lovely looking breed and presumably there would be classes for you to show in not too far away/

 

Cattle breeds

Started by Loobylou

Replies: 12
Views: 3035
Last post August 13, 2015, 07:40:48 am
by Backinwellies
Tell me about native red cattle breeds...

Started by Harebell

Replies: 5
Views: 2105
Last post June 06, 2016, 03:18:24 pm
by Harebell
RWAS Smallholder and Garden Traditional Rare & Native Cattle Breeds competition

Started by Rosemary

Replies: 22
Views: 9278
Last post April 08, 2011, 09:28:37 am
by jacquip
1st time cattle - steer or heifer? Breeds? Which time of year to get?

Started by Tina Turkey

Replies: 8
Views: 6343
Last post December 07, 2010, 07:10:45 pm
by Rosemary
Starter intake - group penning

Started by abc123

Replies: 1
Views: 302
Last post July 14, 2019, 06:28:14 pm
by Buttermilk

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Little Peckers

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2020. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS