Whitebred Shorthorn cross Simmental Cattle
Roddy Macleod, farm manager for The Firm of Moy Farm, Banavie,
Fort-William borrowed a Whitebred Shorthorn bull to use on
some Simmental X heifers.
He tells us of his experience;
The heifers all calved unaided,
The male calves were sold at Fort-William Auction Mart on May
30th 2008 at around 8 months old. They weighed 337kgs and made £550, that is £1.63/kg.
They weighed around 30kg less than Charolais calves of the
same age and around 10p/kg less. I intend keeping the heifer
calves as replacements for the herd, but I was asked if I had
heifers of a similar breeding and were they for sale. I said
no, not even when offered over £600 each.
Moy extends to 680 hectares of which 45 are ploughable, 25
are permanent grass and the rest is hill rising to 2800 feet.
Situated 7 miles from the foot of Ben Nevis, the farm is split
by the Caledonian Canal with access by a 200 year old hand
operated swing bridge.
The farm carries 480 Blackface ewes on the hill with no supplementary
feeding. Scanned twins are run on grass with silage only until
end June then put to hill. 70% lambs reared all sold store.
Ewe hoggs are wintered at home on grass.
60 Simmental cross cows are put to the Charolais bull, with
half calving late September/October, these calves sold locally
in May. Cows are then are put to the hill until calving. The
spring calves are born late April/May, run on old pasture and
sold in October. All cattle are housed for up to 7 months at
After trying AI, I borrowed a Whitebred Shorthorn bull to
run with heifers. 14 have now calved, all unaided. All females
are to be kept for breeding. My aim is to produce a more economical
suckler cow, i.e. smaller, milkier and docile, these Whitebred
Shorthorn cross calves seem to fit the bill. In the future
I may consider using a Whitebred Shorthorn to produce replacements
The Firm of Moy Farm