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A love-a-bull dad

Ray and Sandra Hocking with Simon Worth from LIC [centre] recognising Beamer’s contribution to the New Zealand dairy industry. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

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Imagine celebrating Father’s Day with your 170,000 daughters.

That’s the reality that faced one of LIC’s [Livestock Improvement Corporation] longest-serving bulls at the weekend who just reached the landmark achievement of selling one million semen straws.

Holstein-Friesian bull San Ray FM Beamer ET S2F –  better known as Beamer – reached the milestone just in time for this weekend, having already sired about 170,000 of New Zealand’s dairy cows.

Beamer was born 10 years ago to Carterton couple and pedigree-breeders Ray and Sandra Hocking, who have been breeding bulls since 1973.

Ray said he was very proud of Beamer.

“He’s one of only four bulls in New Zealand who’s done that. That’s quite an achievement.”

Beamer was one of three full brothers that were the result of an embryo transfer from the elite dam ‘Bust’ owned by Stewart and Kathryn Anderson of Otorohanga and ended up being the pick of the litter.

LIC livestock selection manager Simon Worth, who has seen Beamer grow up throughout the years, said his contribution to the dairy industry was significant.

“Not only is he siring impressive daughters that farmers love to milk, but there is no doubt a number of his sons will follow in his footsteps.

“It really is rewarding to see one of the industry’s highest indexing bulls contribute so much. And to be recognised further through the likes of Holstein Friesian New Zealand’s award system is just a feather in the cap.”

Beamer comes from an era where new bulls are superseding older bulls in LIC’s Premier Sires teams at a faster rate than ever before, mainly due to the co-op’s continued investment into genomic technology.

Worth said because of this, Beamer would likely be one of the last bulls to reach the million-straw milestone.

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