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  #1  
Old 09/24/10, 08:29 AM
 
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Whats your opinion of Brangus cattle?

so I've been having a rough time of the cattle business~ short version my youngest heifers turned out to be freemartins, my favorite steer tried to kill me, I can't find buyers for the steers I'd like to process soon,

and the problem that actually has me here~ my older two heifers did not take AI, then my hay guy said he would come get them and take them to his bull, but three different times now I've caught them up because he was coming to get them and he never showed........So I've been trying to get these girls bred for a couple months now and there is just no action other than me doing a lot of sweating and worrying. So I went to the sale barn yesterday with the intent to buy just any old bull I could afford, put him on my heifers for a month or two and then eat him. (I know~ not a good plan but I was feeling desperate, I have a NEW plan now that I'm asking y'all about)

The auction is a very confusing place, and my friend and I were pretty much lost as soon as we stepped in. We sat there trying to understand the auctioneer and arguing about all the information going across the screens when finally I slid over and asked the man next to us what CBL meant (BTW it means CUT bull so it's a good thing we were not bidding!). So we got started talking to this man, and he started pointing out the "Good bulls" and the bad ones for us. We watched for a long time and I learned a lot. We also made a new friend out of the man who breeds Brangus Cattle. He's got a lot of bull calves this year and he's offered to let me come out and buy one that he'll help me pick out so I'll have a good bull of my own to use next year. He also offered to let me bring my heifers to him for his bull to breed but he is about 2 hours from me so we are going to keep trying to find a local bull that will get the job done for my girls this year. I asked about birth weight and he said his average was around 60lbs a calf and that my heifers (dairy cross) could handle that. I asked about temperament and he said the Brangus were very reasonably tempered, to be cautious as always around a bull but not to be paranoid.

What do y'all think?

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  #2  
Old 09/24/10, 10:16 AM
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My cattle are Brangus and brangus cross.
They have a reputation of being flighty and "mean"..this comes from people who arent used to handling them..they cant be cowboyed..you treat 'em with respect, you get respect...My fullblood Brangus cow is my money cow. She produces nice, growthy calves, no matter the bull, milks good and takes heat VERY well. "earred" cattle in my area sell very well. She was a wild range cow when I bought her, but with quiet, firm handling, she is now quite mellow and easy to work..with people she knows. I dont doubt if someone tried to steal her, we'd find a small grease spot in the dirt where she stomped him..LOL
This is her


and with her calf from this year sired by a Maine Anjou

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Old 09/24/10, 01:12 PM
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I don't have any purebred Brangus but my beef cattle are highly brangus influenced. I like their mothering ability, the milk ability, and their ability to gain weight. I just don't like the way one is heavily discounted at the sale barn for the ear and brisket flopping around.

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Old 09/24/10, 01:31 PM
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What's "ear"?

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  #5  
Old 09/24/10, 01:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by CrashTestRanch View Post
What's "ear"?
The larger ears that denote Brahman breeding.

In the hot, humid South some Brahman influence is good, but the Brahman cattle don't finish as well, and often breed later than other breeds. An individual with too much "ear", showing too much Brahman breeding will be discounted heavily.

In our area an animal with 1/4 to 3/8 Brahman will do pretty well. Once you get to half or more Brahman they don't sell well at all.
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  #6  
Old 09/24/10, 01:49 PM
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so you should look for smaller ears in cattle?

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  #7  
Old 09/24/10, 01:51 PM
 
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It has been my experience with Brahman and Brahman cross cattle that those that are left to themselves and handled rarely are very hard to control or do anything with. Those that are handled regularly and gently will usually be almost pets.

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  #8  
Old 09/24/10, 01:54 PM
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It has been my experience with Brahman and Brahman cross cattle that those that are left to themselves and handled rarely are very hard to control or do anything with. Those that are handled regularly and gently will usually be almost pets.
couldn't them same be said about most, if not all cattle?
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  #9  
Old 09/24/10, 01:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by CrashTestRanch View Post
so you should look for smaller ears in cattle?
If you're going to be selling at auctions you just don't want calves that show a lot of Brahman influence. They're discounted heavily.
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  #10  
Old 09/24/10, 01:56 PM
 
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Originally Posted by CrashTestRanch View Post
couldn't them same be said about most, if not all cattle?
You have a much wider swing in the pendulum with the Brahman than other breeds. Again, in my experience. Other's mileage may vary.
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  #11  
Old 09/24/10, 02:03 PM
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If you're going to be selling at auctions you just don't want calves that show a lot of Brahman influence. They're discounted heavily.
I was just wondering if the same is true in Angus as well as others like Murray Grey ...

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You have a much wider swing in the pendulum with the Brahman than other breeds. Again, in my experience. Other's mileage may vary.
ahhh, okay ...
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  #12  
Old 09/24/10, 02:04 PM
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Crash, here is some "ear":



Cattle have two sub-species, bos taurus and bos indicus. Bos taurus are the British/European breeds. You often hear bos indicus influence referred to as "eared" cattle. The American version of bos indicus is Brahman, which is also often referred to as Braymer or Brimmer.

If you live someplace extremely hot, humid and buggy, cattle with some "ear" will have some natural tolerance/resisitance and be more likely to thrive. I don't have any first hand experience with them so I'll leave it to someone who does to address their disposition.

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  #13  
Old 09/24/10, 02:04 PM
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In my area, they like 1/2 to 3/4 brangus..ear sells. While everyone else's cattle are panting in the shade on a 105 degree day, my cows are out grazing.

Brangus can, at times, be abit more growthy then the continental breeds. I witness this at alot of stock shows..American breeds just dont stack up well, at a young age, to the continentals..

Ive personaly not had problems with gain or not getting bred with my Brangus. that doesnt mean all will be that way..but I dont wonder if its abit genetics within the breed as well.

The brangus is ideal for my purpose, because you have the heat and insect tolerance of the brimmer and the gain of the angus. Ive heard that brangus crossed on Herfs (super baldies) are phenomenal.

The key when looking into types of cattle is, figuring out your market(where you will sell them) and if you will sell at a sale, what sells best in your area.

the further north you go, the less ear you want..as they wont sell as well.

I market my beef privately, but I still watch the sales and results.

friend of mine had a brangus cow who he said would walk off a cliff if he asked her too..they like respect, this same friend, who breeds registered Brangus, talks about them as being quite sure of themselves and confident in who and what they are...if that makes sense.

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  #14  
Old 09/24/10, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by MO_cows View Post
Crash, here is some "ear":



If you live someplace extremely hot, humid and buggy, cattle with some "ear" will have some natural tolerance/resisitance and be more likely to thrive.
That's a floppy eared dogs worth of "ear" I didn't know that ear length is related to their ability to dissipate heat better???

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Originally Posted by spinandslide View Post
In my area, they like 1/2 to 3/4 brangus..ear sells. While everyone else's cattle are panting in the shade on a 105 degree day, my cows are out grazing.
I wonder why that is ...
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  #15  
Old 09/24/10, 02:16 PM
 
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Well, I was at the sale yesterday looking at all the bulls and prices. The ones with more ear and longer legs~ the traits my friend said are differentiate the Brangus from the Angus were going for a slightly higher price. Rough average~ just numbers I recall~ the heavier black ones that looked more angus and brangus were going around .90 to .95 a lb. The one I actually bid on with my friends encouragement that it was a "Good one" got to 1.15lb before he told me to stop bidding cuz he could do much better in price for me. The ones he has are registered Brangus 5/8 Angus 3/8 Brahman. I'll ask him but I don't think the price he was telling me of 400-500 will be for a papered bull though. He's being nice to me and selling me a nice one without papers to breed to my dairy cross heifers and maybe a few beef I may pick up.....I think I can talk myself around needing at least 4 heifers to justify keeping a bull.

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  #16  
Old 09/24/10, 02:25 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrashTestRanch View Post
That's a floppy eared dogs worth of "ear" I didn't know that ear length is related to their ability to dissipate heat better???
It's not necessarily that the ears "dissipate" the heat, though they may help with that in some way, but that the Brahman have more tolerance for the heat.

As spinandslide said, cattle with a little Brahman breeding will be up eating with few flies on them, while other cattle will be lying in the shade swatting them.
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  #17  
Old 09/24/10, 03:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrashTestRanch View Post
That's a floppy eared dogs worth of "ear" I didn't know that ear length is related to their ability to dissipate heat better???



I wonder why that is ...
As Tyus said, it is the TYPE of cattle and their traits..Brimmer are extremly heat tolerant and resistant to bugs.

Some other American breeds that have the brimmer influence as well..Santa Gertrudis and Beefmaster are the two other to come to mind..both are extremly popular down here in texas..espc southern TX...and it comes down to their ability to cope with our horrendous bugs and heat. I personaly wouldnt mind having a beefmaster on my place..
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  #18  
Old 09/24/10, 04:23 PM
 
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I have had some brangus and I definitely never want another one. They are flighty and can jump a 6 foot fence. A momma cow is very defensive of her calf and will try to imitate an attack dog if you need to treat the calf in the pasture.

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  #19  
Old 09/26/10, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Cheryl aka JM View Post
so I've been having a rough time of the cattle business~ short version my youngest heifers turned out to be freemartins, my favorite steer tried to kill me, I can't find buyers for the steers I'd like to process soon,

and the problem that actually has me here~ my older two heifers did not take AI, then my hay guy said he would come get them and take them to his bull, but three different times now I've caught them up because he was coming to get them and he never showed........So I've been trying to get these girls bred for a couple months now and there is just no action other than me doing a lot of sweating and worrying. So I went to the sale barn yesterday with the intent to buy just any old bull I could afford, put him on my heifers for a month or two and then eat him. (I know~ not a good plan but I was feeling desperate, I have a NEW plan now that I'm asking y'all about)

The auction is a very confusing place, and my friend and I were pretty much lost as soon as we stepped in. We sat there trying to understand the auctioneer and arguing about all the information going across the screens when finally I slid over and asked the man next to us what CBL meant (BTW it means CUT bull so it's a good thing we were not bidding!). So we got started talking to this man, and he started pointing out the "Good bulls" and the bad ones for us. We watched for a long time and I learned a lot. We also made a new friend out of the man who breeds Brangus Cattle. He's got a lot of bull calves this year and he's offered to let me come out and buy one that he'll help me pick out so I'll have a good bull of my own to use next year. He also offered to let me bring my heifers to him for his bull to breed but he is about 2 hours from me so we are going to keep trying to find a local bull that will get the job done for my girls this year. I asked about birth weight and he said his average was around 60lbs a calf and that my heifers (dairy cross) could handle that. I asked about temperament and he said the Brangus were very reasonably tempered, to be cautious as always around a bull but not to be paranoid.

What do y'all think?

Really think hard about buying a bull at the sale barn. If he's diseased and infects your heifers with something, he could be a lot more expensive than you expect.

As I understand the situation, he's willing to sell you a young, breeding age Brangus bull for $4-500? That's very reasonable. The Brangus breed is 5/8 Angus 3/8 Brahman but there can be a lot of variety in the genetics. There is research from the Meat Animal Research Center (MARC) showing the more Brahman influence in a carcass, the more likely it will be tough. Of course, you'll not have much actual Brahman influence in the calves if you breed a Brangus bull to purebred dairy heifers. Frankly, I wouldn't worry about the Brahman influence at the sale barn. Dairy calves have their own reputation if you sell through a sale barn.

I'm convinced that disposition is greatly related to management. In our experience, having a bull on the place adds a new dimension to handling your cattle whatever his disposition. They're just a "different" critter than the cows.

It seems the man who has taken you under his wing is trying to help you out. I'd say go to his place, look over his cattle, talk about herd health, walk through the cattle to get a handle on disposition and if all seems well, get a bull. Just be sure he doesn't get you over there looking for a $500 bull and then try to sell you a $1,500 bull. If you need the heifers bred NOW, I just can't see where he could sell you a breeding age bull for $4-500. But maybe he's just being helpful????? Ask if the bull has been fertility tested or offer to do it at your own expense. You're not helping yourself if you bring a bull home that can't breed cows. Or one that won't be sexually mature for another six months. Good luck....
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  #20  
Old 09/26/10, 12:45 PM
 
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I'm convinced that disposition is greatly related to management. In our experience, having a bull on the place adds a new dimension to handling your cattle whatever his disposition. They're just a "different" critter than the cows.
This is an area that we strongly disagree. I have seen both bulls and cows seemingly be predictable day after day and then without obvious provocation turn mean, real mean! Most of those that I have observed had Brahma influence in their make up.
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Old 09/26/10, 02:04 PM
 
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It seems the man who has taken you under his wing is trying to help you out. I'd say go to his place, look over his cattle, talk about herd health, walk through the cattle to get a handle on disposition and if all seems well, get a bull. Just be sure he doesn't get you over there looking for a $500 bull and then try to sell you a $1,500 bull. If you need the heifers bred NOW, I just can't see where he could sell you a breeding age bull for $4-500. But maybe he's just being helpful????? Ask if the bull has been fertility tested or offer to do it at your own expense. You're not helping yourself if you bring a bull home that can't breed cows. Or one that won't be sexually mature for another six months. Good luck....
He's not offering me a breeding age bull. He's offering me a young bull that will be breeding age by next summer. I'm still looking for a bull to do my breeding this year. I may have a fellow who will let me use his red angus bull, that fellow also offered to sell me a bull~ a belted galloway for $800. I know buying from the sale barn is a bad idea~ I wasn't very serious about the idea to start with but Iwas a feeling a bit low. Now I'm hoping to use the red angus bull this year and I'm not sure what I want to do for next year. The brangus bull? The belted Galloway? Wait and try to borrow one again and hope it's not as much trouble as this year?
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  #22  
Old 09/26/10, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Cheryl aka JM View Post
He's not offering me a breeding age bull. He's offering me a young bull that will be breeding age by next summer. I'm still looking for a bull to do my breeding this year. I may have a fellow who will let me use his red angus bull, that fellow also offered to sell me a bull~ a belted galloway for $800. I know buying from the sale barn is a bad idea~ I wasn't very serious about the idea to start with but Iwas a feeling a bit low. Now I'm hoping to use the red angus bull this year and I'm not sure what I want to do for next year. The brangus bull? The belted Galloway? Wait and try to borrow one again and hope it's not as much trouble as this year?
That makes more sense to me. Sorry, guess I missed that the first time around.

I wouldn't do it. Young bulls are a pain. They tear stuff like you wouldn't believe. In some of our grazing paddocks, we hang plastic barrels up for mineral. I remember one young bull that when we turned him in there, he break into a run to that barrel. Then he'd treat it like a head punching bag until he had it on the ground and roll it all over the place, mineral going everywhere. They're like a rowdy teenage boy. Very rough on gates, fences, equipment, etc. Plus if you don't want to run him with the cows all time, that's a problem.

I've never used these folks:

http://www.profitmakerbulls.com/bull...g-program.html

but they've been around for quite a while. You lease a bull, they ship him. When your lease is up, you ship him back or buy him if you want him. They're guaranteed fertile and healthy.
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  #23  
Old 09/26/10, 02:25 PM
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This is an area that we strongly disagree. I have seen both bulls and cows seemingly be predictable day after day and then without obvious provocation turn mean, real mean! Most of those that I have observed had Brahma influence in their make up.
But not ALL of them, right? We can strongly disagree. It's ok with me.
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