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Contact Us:

Office: 585-798-4088
Fax: 585-798-2587
skherefordscattle@gmail.com

Dave Schubel:
Cell: 716-560-4482
Dcs1071@msn.com

Phil & Dawn Keppler:
Home: 585-798-4088
Cell: 716-560-4480
Dawnk585@gmail.com
pdkeppler@gmail.com

Alana Keppler
Cell: 585-721-0677
Alana.keppler@gmail.com

 

Data / Record Keeping

A brief explanation of the records we keep and how they are helping us breed more profitable cattle and most importantly taking away some of the risk and guess work in the product you are buying.

Spring (The Harvest; the new genetics hit the ground and the most data is recorded.)

Calving

· Birth Weight. We weigh all our calves at tagging, which is usually at a day old. Our birth weights are generally heavier than other parts of the country due to our weather and how we have to feed cows. It is not uncommon for us to have mostly 90-100 lbs calves. If we get a spring blizzard or a bitter cold snap Mother Nature will add another 10 lbs to those calves. We have noticed that the bigger calves have a higher survival rate, although if we get them too big that there is an increased occurrence of dystocia.

· Calving ease is recorded on all cows and heifers. We don’t hesitate to assist if a cow is taking too long. We don't want that cow in continued pain and we want to make sure that we get the calf out alive.

· Calf vigor. We still collect a calf vigor score which tells us if the calf got up right away and nursed like Mother Nature intended.

· Maternal Ability. We score the cows on how much maternal instinct they exhibit at calving and tagging.

· Udder score. We score every cow and heifer at calving. It is important for a cow to have a good udder so it is easy for a calf to nurse on her without any extra assistance.

· Dam BCS. We collect body condition scores to see how the cow faired the winter. It is also a good indicator of the cow's health and well-being.

Yearling Data

· Yearling weights. We will get YW on our entire calf crop, commercial and Hereford.

· Yearling Hip Ht. We will collect hip heights on all bulls and heifers. We use frame scores to help us predict genetics.

· Scrotal circumference. We provide scrotal measurements and semen testing. We put a lot selection pressure on large testicles on our bulls and will cull bulls if they don’t have enough scrotal circumference.

· Disposition. We place a high premium on a good disposition.

Summer

· Spring turnout. We weigh all the cows when we de-worm them and vaccinate them in the spring. With the fall weights we can see how much our cows gained or lost from spring to fall and look at historical data from year to year.

· Breeding Season. We use mostly Bull power to breed our cows and we watch breeding pastures very closely. We observe our Herd bulls breeding to make sure that they are “good breeders”. We feel bulls that are clumsy are more likely to hurt themselves. We can’t afford to be selling sons of these bulls to commercial men that expect their cows to get bred.

· Pasture Yields. We try and measure the yields of our pastures and since we know the number of head and the time they were out there we can apply consumption per head. We have used these records to compare the efficiencies of lbs of calf weaned between different groups of cows pastured at different farms. We use this data more to compare different pasture types and uses of different fertilizer then we do to compare genetics.

Fall

· Weaning weights. There is nothing like bringing in big calves in the fall. We put a lot of emphasis on lbs of calf weaned vs. lbs of cow. Since our main job is to produce lbs of beef, we have to have genetics that put on pounds as efficiently as possible. We usually wean our calves at 6-7 months of age and they are not given any creep.

· Cows Weights. We weight all our cows at weaning time and this gives us the ability to generate an lbs weaned/lbs of cow number.

· Cow BCS. Probably one of the most important measurements in regard to efficiency we have. The better the body condition score a cow has the better she can handle the winter, the more likely she is bred, the better condition her calf is in at weaning, and there is a higher chance she is going to have a healthier calf in the spring. We cannot over look fleshing ability.

Winter

· Feeding records. We keep track of the amount of feed each group gets during the winter so that we can apply those cost to individual cows. We are continually trying to determine what each one of our cows cost us through the year. This way we hopefully can continue to select for genetics that produce more from less.