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Big bull comes with big price tag

A Carterton farm has welcomed the arrival of an exceptional $34,000 sire.

The McFadzean Cattle Company bought the two-year-old Simmental bull, advertised as having “phenomenal early growth” and a scrotal circumference of 44cm from Kerrah, a Wairoa-based farm.

What convinced Johnie McFadzean – manager of the 4500-acre family farm – to make the investment was the “massive impact” the bull would have due to being “very well put together”.

“He’s the type we are after, which is a moderate, well-muscled, deep-bodied, very quiet bull that is going to produce good females.”

The bull has perfect feet and a great temperament, he said

“We have bought a lot of Kerrah bulls over the years, and they are really good bulls – durable and last forever.”

McFadzean said he plans to enter the sire, which has an “excellent set of genetic traits”, into the farm’s meat maker programme early “to get a good chance” with the cows.

He predicts that about 50 calves will be produced annually over the next five years.

“I think he’ll have an immediate impact, particularly when crossed with Kerrah Euro offspring, which we’ve used heavily the past four years through our meat maker cattle,” he said.

McFadzean said the Simmental Bull was the top-priced for its breed in the country for this year.

He added that despite bull auctions being “back a little bit,” they are continuing to sell.

“Times are tight, and you need the best bang for your buck.”

McFadzean Cattle Company owner John McFadzean began 45 years of crossbreeding between Simmentals and Angus.

Both breeds are strong maternally, whereas Simmentals have more growth, and Angus are medium-framed.

“I thought that these two breeds would complement each other,” he said.

The McFadzean herd continues to evolve, with numbers increasing to 2000 females calving this coming spring.

PGG Wrightson sheep and beef representative Andrew Jennings said bulls were bought during this season to join the cows in spring and summer.

“It’s a whole novel of what you look for in an animal that makes it superior to the next,” Jennings said.

“It’s fitness, spring of rib, it’s rump good bone, head carriage, flank, heart room, neckline muscling.

“Some are genetically proven to have a higher intermuscular fat content or external fat content.”

Jennings also explained that bulls with a larger testicle circumference are desirable because they are able to service more cows.

The McFadzean Cattle Company’s yearling Angus Bull open day is on August 28, and the auction will be held on September 13.

Both will include three types of Angus, including the McFadzean Meat Maker, Super Angus Bulls, and McFadzean Cruizy Calves.

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