Farmer relies on Tracesure for strong results and optimum performance

For Magheralin-based farmer, Robin Wells and his son, Scott, it’s all about results when it comes to running their Laganview Luing and Sim-Luing suckler herd and, for optimum performance, they rely on Tracesure Cattle with Copper from Animax.

When Robin was first introduced to Luing cattle at the Highland Show in Scotland 10 years ago [stated in 2022] he was very impressed with the breed. He asked the Luing breeder on the Society stand if they were hard to keep and the breeder’s reply was “No, all you need is a good view and a bit of a whin bush (Gorse)!”

The following year Robin went to the Castle Douglas annual sale and purchased 20 pure-bred Luing bulling heifers. These were put to a Simmental bull and the heifer calves were registered as Sim Luing. “Sim-Luing are great maternal cows so, a few years later, we took the decision to cross these with Charolais,” continued Robin.

Today Robin and Scott have 20 pure-bred Luing going to the Simmental bull and 35 Sim-Luings being put to the Charolais bull. All the bull calves are kept and finished as bull beef with ABP Lurgan. Sim-Luing heifer calves are retained as replacements for the herd or sold on for breeding, while the Charolais-cross heifers are sold in September as forward stores for finishing.

“The comment from the Luing man at the Highland show all those years ago was memorable and not far off the mark but, here at Laganview Farm, we leave nothing to chance,” said Robin. “With the right bolus our cattle can reach optimum all round performance in a shorter period of time. For us the right bolus is Tracesure Cattle with Copper. “It’s a highly effective supplementation method and provides copper, cobalt, iodine and selenium. It is a premium product that provides
premium results.

“In early April, at Spring turn-out, we use Tracesure in the cows pre-breeding to maintain fertility and this covers them for the grazing season.

“All bulling heifers receive a Tracesure cattle bolus six to eight weeks before going to the bull in May, at the same time as we give them their vaccinations.”

2016 saw 29 of the 30 heifers in-calf and in 2017 the farm had 21 heifers going to the bull, all of which scanned in-calf.

“Tracesure helps to provide good strong vigorous heats and better conception rates,” explains Robin.

Spring born calves are bolused as soon as they hit 200kgs, usually around June. The bolus is given when they have their first worm treatment. A second bolus is provided at weaning in November.

The records show that Tracesure also works well with their bulls. In 2015 the farm produced 21 bulls (Luing and Sim-Luing) with an average kill age of 13.9 months and an average kill-out weight of 396kg.

“We had 16 U’s and five R’s – all U3’s and R3’s,” confirmed Robin.

In 2017 Robin and Scott decided to monitor performance even more closely, concentrating on young bulls. “At 319 days on the farm they averaged 583kg in weight,” said Robin. “Allowing for a 45kg birthweight that equates to 1.68kg of growth per day. That’s mainly as a result of milk and grass that has been complemented by Tracesure. They don’t see creep until the end of August.”

The animals look good with great shiny coats and have plenty of vigour. “We have also noticed there are less foot and lameness problems with the bulls and, again, we put that down to Tracesure helping them to process the protein and energy in their diet,” he added. “We see it as attention to detail – we are absolutely delighted with what Tracesure Cattle with Copper has to offer.”

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