The decision you make today, will determine where you are tomorrow
We have a very good friend who always refers to Breeders and Multipliers. It’s always a hard question to ask oneself… which are you? Where do you place yourself? I think it is important to know that a Breeder will always try and improve each generation where a Multiplier just wants a calf on the ground. So, the hard Question to ask as a commercial cattle farmer is: Are you improving every generation?
One popular way to do this is with Crossbreeding. Crossbreeding claims to better your herd or production without spending a lot of many, BUT using the wrong approach will cost you dearly in the long run. We said it before and will say it again in the future, this will only be true if you invest in quality Performance tested bulls. ~To measure is to know~
Crossbreeding: a word that implies simplicity, but the true definition is complex, complicated and just difficult to do… that is if you want to do it right… profitable.
Like with all farming operations, planning and goals are very important when you want to do crossbreeding. Research shows that crossbreeding can be very successful, but if a crossbreeding program isn’t planned to the Tee, you aren’t moving forward. When we crossbreed animals, we need to know exactly what we want to do with the offspring. Cross breeding is a very difficult type of breeding to do, especially because offspring does not necessary meet the required results, especially from the 3rd generation. This is because we use “unknown” animals. We just don’t know what they are “made’ of. Most experts tell us that the success of crossbreeding is determined by the genetic potential of the parents. Ask any Breeder and he will say that this is the absolute truth.
That is exactly where the Bonsmara comes in handy. By Buying a B-Branded Bonsmara Bull, you can select for specific desired traits. Because Performance testing was compulsory from the very beginning of the Bonsmara breed, there are more than 1.5 million Bonsmaras with complete Breeding values on record. When you use a B-Branded Bonsmara bull, you have all the traits you need in the offspring, you can use Bonsmara bulls again and again without compromising growth and fertility. We stick to our guns when we say, investing in a proper Performance tested bull is the cheapest component of your operation but with the largest effect.
Interesting fact I read about Crossbreeding a Brahman and Bonsmara, is that most farmers believe that either a Bonsmara or a Brahman should be the mother line, but they underestimate crossing the two.
Years ago, we had a commercial Brahman x Bonsmara herd, where the mother line was Brahman and we used our young Phase D bulls on them.
But it’s not only Bonsmara Bulls that work well in a crossbreeding system, but also the cows.
So, you’ve been crossbreeding for a while now. You used bulls from different breeds and now you have some all sorts and kinds in your mother line. The easiest way to better the next generation will be to invest in a Bonsmara B-branded bull. And you stick with a Bonsmara bull for the next generations. You won’t believe the improvement of your cattle in traits like growth, fertility, conformation, mothering ability, milk, carcass quality, early maturing and disposition (temperament) Maybe we should write something about this next time.
Remember pure bred animals fetch much higher prices then cross breed animals, and they are uniform in color, so try and breed at least a small part of your herd as pure as possible.
Measure and know
We hear so often here in Mozambique farmers wanting to develop a breed for Mozambique… and it is so unnecessary, and costly while you can just let science do the work for you. By incorporating the scientific breed (Bonsmara) into your breeding program, you are developing a type of cattle adapted to your unique farming situation and yet, it’s got all the economic traits of the Bonsmara genetics.
Bonsmara cattle have been used with huge success in crossbreeding programs all over the world. The proof is in the progeny.