What makes a great breeder?
03 May 2016
Jim and Sue Webster are Taranaki farmers who have contributed two bulls to LIC’s Premier Sires teams marketed in 2015. The bulls are Waiau Max Tommo S3F and Taramont Hightide.
The Websters of Waiau Trust are among LIC’s top breeders being presented with a certificate from LIC thanking them for their contribution to these elite bull teams.
Jim says being a breeder is about having a passion for it, learning from others, keeping up with trends, attending NZAEL user group meetings and occasionally a bit of luck. “I go through all the catalogues pretty thoroughly before I decide which bulls I’m going to use over my cows,” he says.
“Sometimes it’s not an instant decision. You consider the traits of the cow the bull is going over and her parentage as well. As soon as I get a catalogue, I read it right through.”
Asked the traits of a great cow, Jim says it’s about her characteristics – efficient production, getting in calf early, good temperament, capacity and udders…as well as good legs and hooves. And a good bull? “A bull that leaves cows with those traits.”
Jim says it was definitely nice for he and his wife to be acknowledged for their work with LIC, who they enjoy working with.