This Australian Hereford stud gets it right, time after time
What does it take to set up a successful Hereford cattle stud?
Hard work, guts and determination? The right piece of land? Clever and meticulous attention to cattle breeding and genetics? Or is it just a nice combination of all of these? Certainly, behind Amos-Vale Herefords you will find a family with a love for good quality cattle. Mark and Wendy Campion, along with sons Matthew and Bradyn continue the Hereford vision that Noel and Marie commenced from the original “Amos-Vale” property and testify to the versatility of the wonderful Hereford breed.
Fifty-one years after the purchase of carefully selected cows, Amos-Vale Hereford stud remains well-positioned to carry the breed into the future. From those foundation female cows, no further females have been introduced and the Campion family have bred a herd with a genetic pool that is strong enough to produce consistent, predictable and profitable Hereford bulls. Top priority at Amos-Vale Herefords, Mark tells us, is to join their cows to the most suitable genetics that will produce progeny to do the job for the people that buy them.
“It’s easy to breed one or two good bulls,” Mark explains, “But the true test of a stud’s breeding program lies in the genetic strength of your cow herd and their ability to put together quality, consistent, even lines of Hereford bulls.”
We all know that you just can’t beat the eye of a good cattle breeder for choosing the best cattle. Mark tells us he was always destined to be a Hereford man, he loves the breed, so it just comes naturally to select the right bulls for their cow base that will produce the outstanding quality, even line bulls that their clients are looking for. According to Mark, the eye sees even before the figures tell. Early in the Amos-Vale breeding program, Mark’s family saw the need to introduce American influence sires into the herd. Using carefully selected bulls, that were kept for a very short period, these sires gave the Amos-Vale herd a lift in profile, producing bigger framed Herefords.
The Amos-Vale sale results speak for themselves: Full clearance of bulls and repeat buyers that come back year after year. “It’s easy to breed one or two good bulls,” Mark explains, “But the true test of a stud’s breeding program lies in the genetic strength of your cow herd and their ability to put together quality, consistent, even lines of Hereford bulls.” Amos-Vale endeavours to produce well-muscled bulls with plenty of meat that will deliver progeny to fit all market requirements and gain consistently high sale results.
There is no doubt in Mark’s mind as to why Herefords are a breed to take into the future. “Their versatility. No matter how hard the times or the seasons are, the Herefords will always forage, and try to survive. They seem to be able to rear a calf and hang on longer than most other breeds.” Herefords are sought after because they possess a quiet temperament that makes for easy doing, no fuss farming systems. Another handy trait is the Hereford ability to cross with other cattle breeds. Herefords are highly marketable, Mark tells us, selling well from a young age no matter how tough the season.
These qualities of course, have been severely tested this year with drought conditions taking hold throughout NSW. Improved pastures and a long history of well fertilised ground has kept Amos-Vale in a steady position; the cows have made it through the 2018 big dry with a calving percentage the equals any other year. Still, like most Aussie farmers right now, it’s a matter of dig in and hold on.
But as Mark mentioned earlier, Herefords have this wonderful doing ability that will carry them through. Recent rainfall has alleviated the pressure somewhat. And meantime, this quiet, sturdy and dependable breed maintain weight, consistency and calving ability despite the conditions. A quiet cow is a wonderful thing, according to Mark. They just make life easy!
Amos-Vale Herefords, 51 years and going strong. Look us up online, phone for a chat or drop by. Visitors are always welcome.