Kelly Angus hits the jackpot with industry leading siresSeptember 11, 2020
Over the past 6 years the Kelly Angus team have built a respected reputation as progressive and innovative seedstock producers, breeding quality Angus cattle who present with the ‘right mix’ of genetics that fit the stud’s core philosophy; to produce cattle that ultimately lead to profitable outcomes and a great eating experience.
This approach to ‘end game’ breeding sits at the heart of the type of cattle Kelly Angus are producing at the Murrindindi property in Victoria.
Stud Manager, Patrick Joyce said, “along with the seedstock side of the operation and as commercial producers ourselves, we wouldn’t sell what we wouldn’t want to buy”, and that includes being focused on the ‘eating factor’, as Pat describes it.
Comprehensive data evaluation, research and the sourcing of genetics from leading Angus sires both nationally and internationally has allowed the stud to introduce a ‘blend’ of genetics that reinforces the existing depth and quality in the stud herd and align with breeding goals.
“We are continually introducing a range of new sires, notably from the US, into our breeding program and mating decisions”, said Patrick.
Keeping the stud’s gene pool “tight” and being consistent enables the stud to turn cattle off year round who meet a wide range of demands from the market; and commercially productive cattle that deliver long term viability for clients.
Bulls from the renowned US Gardiner Angus Ranch feature heavily throughout the Kelly Angus sire program. Current AI sires, GAR Proactive and GAR Inertia are producing “very tidy calves with heaps of style, carcase and that are easy doing” said Patrick. “Weight pays and the GAR sires really fit with what we are doing”.
The introduction of GAR Surefire, Sunrise and Profit bulls into the female herd in previous years has proven the value of the GAR bloodlines. The genetic improvements these sires have added to the herd ensures the Kelly cows have good frame and capacity. The stud aims to breed cattle with frame scores of between 5.5 to 6.5 as an ideal size.
Producing maternal females with exceptional calving ease and high fertility, and cattle which are functional, efficient with longevity on their side rate highly in the stud’s breeding aims.
From our core breeding herd heavily influenced by highly proven sires, bringing leading industry sire, Hazeldean Jackpot and other Australian sires into the herd has introduced new genetics that focused on producing sure-footed animals with great EBV’s and good carcase traits.
Patrick said, “The Jackpot son” has exceptional feet and an even spread of EBV data, an excellent temperament, easy doing bull that is leaving his mark on the herd. “We are impressed with the even-line of progeny he has sired with the females set to be added to our core herd.”
He added, “His current 12 month old progeny look amazing, with plenty of capacity and presence”. This bull is producing a line of females that are easily achieving expected joining weights at 14 to15 months of age”. The yearling bulls are certainly holding their own against the leading AI sires progeny. His sons will be available in our March sale.
Kelly Angus are big believers in the benefits of collecting and analysing data to drive genetic improvements. The introduction of genomic testing has been a “gamechanger’ according to Patrick.
Testing for key traits along with DNA reporting is now firmly entrenched as part of the stud’s ongoing management of its breeding program. Genomic testing is used as a tool to complement decision making for herd development. “It enhances EBV accuracy” he said, and “the data is proving popular as it helps our clients be able to make better buying decisions.”
Carcase weight and carcase quality are sought after traits, and the Kelly Angus team work hard to produce cattle who present an even balance of carcase and ample marbling with minimal impact on growth and production.
“The more accurate the carcase data, the more we can equate the value of our cattle to $$ dollars” explains Pat. “We are working closely with our commercial clients to set our benchmarks in this area, and see it being of high importance to our ongoing program”.
Breeding recessive trait free cattle is another long-term goal. Select criteria for individual animal traits along with genomic testing and other evaluation tools including the $$ Index Values and its relationship to EBVS ultimately determine the ROI per animal at Kelly Angus, and influence breeding decisions.
All the above selection criteria combine to produce cattle that are well balanced, eye appealing, have great carcase’s, strong structure and can perform in grass fed commercial operations.
The recent addition of the powerhouse sire, Texas Powerplay P613, has cemented Kelly Angus’s position as a serious Angus breeder in the industry who are in it for the long game.
Bringing Texas Powerplay P613 home to the valley will assist the stud achieve the desired outcomes in the ongoing development of the herd. He is a “remarkable, well put together, good looking sire with a very even spread of EBVs combined with a strong pedigree” said Pat. “As producers are paid on meat and weight, Powerplay’s high carcase merit means commercially this bull will deliver the ROI we seek”.
Generating a lot of interest both nationally and internationally with strong enquiry from the UK, USA, Argentina and NZ, opens the door for Kelly Angus to expand into the semen sales market.
With the beef market holding up well, Kelly Angus offer high performing Angus bulls by private sale and at their annual Autumn on-property sale, to be held in March 2021. The March sale will also feature a line of joined heifers.