top of page

BULLS OF DISTINCTION

Buying a bull is a genetic decision and not a financial one.” (Gerhard van Zyl. LBW)

"Visual analysis tells you what an animal appears to be, his pedigree tells you what he should be, his performance and progeny tells you what he actually is."(American Simmental Association)

The Econotech Simmentaler Herd

The Karoo is very kind to those that respect it in all its nuances. Our family on Doornbult-Boven have learnt this lesson time and again the past two centuries.

 

Our herd of Simmentaler is a product of these lessons - farm for profit by adapting your animals to the environment and not the other way round.

Fertility and calving ease are most important when farming in the Karoo. Breeding traits that underpin these characteristics are bigger scrotum circumference (SS) (highly correlated with earlier calving of heifers), shorter days to calving (DC), moderate milk and a lighter cow frame (MCW). The condition status of our herd (as measured by EMA, Rib and Rump Fat and Marbling) help also to raise their fertility. Lastly, one has to stick meticulously to those cows that out-calf and out-last the rest of the herd.

 

On the farm everything does not always work out according to the book. A graph of our ebv’s since 1999 shows that we managed to increase calving ease considerable in relation to the average of the SA crop. Fertility as measured by the progress with Days to Calving is also commendable. This can be ascribed to our stringent culling regime re heifers and cows which do not calf within our parameters. A second graph on condition traits shows that we are also on track regarding a higher Rib and Rump fat measurements. Our aim to increase the EMA (eye muscle area) or Marbling (IMF) of our herd is not yet so successful. This is at present one of our focus breeding objectives. Another focus area is to keep on increasing growth, but with lowering our cows’ mature weight.

The outcome of this breeding philosophy is that our heifers calf on average at 24 months. This is followed by our cows who calf on average at 352 days (the ICP (Inter Calving Period)). Growth is, of course, also important

 

The attached third graph shows how we manage to bend the performance curve thrice. Firstly, by having a higher Calving Ease (CE)/lower milk as well as high scrotum size (SS), secondly, a higher growth at 400 and 600 days, but with an average MCW in comparison to the SA 2022 crop, and, thirdly, an average EMA (we hope to increase this trait in future), but with very high Rib and Rump Fat body condition traits.

Our breeding philosophy is in line with Prof. Bob Weaber’s teachings. During his regular visits to the LRF Stockman School he emphasized the need to fit the cow to its environment. He mentioned various breeding traits that should be in place, such as:

·        Cow frame/weight and milk production determine their nutrient requirements, which again should be in line with the environment; and

·        Body condition of cows have a major influence on their pregnancy rate.

We add to these principles the need to select for a high Scrotal Size (SS) as well as Calving Ease (CED and CEM). Furthermore, we utilise the findings of Australian research regarding the need to select for the various elements of Body Condition, namely REA (rib eye area)(or EMA, eye muscle area), Rib and Rump Fat as well as IMF (intra muscular fat or marbling).

Finally, outstanding cattle come from outstanding cows. Our reward from the LRF for the John Deere Simmentaler Cow Group for 2023 underscores this statement.

Our bulls represent the best of our breeding policy. In addition they excel under veld conditions – only the most hardy ones are kept as stud bulls. Furthermore, each of our Classes of 2020, 2021 and 2022 Bulls has four or more dams in its pedigree which have performed exceptional regarding all the traits mentioned above.

Econotech Dan S, PJD1743
Senior seedstock sire

 

dan pjd1743 aaril22_edited.jpg

Dan, a son of the exceptional bul, Simberg Zolerz P, has cemented these reproduction traits in our herd. Two of his sons are members of the Class of 2020, namely Kai Kai(Sold) and Brand
 

Dan, PJD1743 S, demonstrates his curve bending ability in three different ways. Firstly, Dan surpasses the average SA Simmentaler Herd regarding calving ease (higher) and birth weight (lower). In a similar fashion Dan improves fertility as shown by his EBV’s for scrotal size (SS) (higher), but with solid growth (400 days in top 25%) and a lower cow weight (MCW) (in the lower 30% of the SA 2022 crop). Thirdly, Dan is also tops regarding muscling and condition (measured by its eye muscle area (EMA) and rib and rump fat). The latter attributes help him to maintain his condition under extensive grazing conditions.

 

The accompanying graph shows the ability of Dan to bend growth and fertility curves. Furthermore, Dan’s pedigree includes illustrious sires: two German sires (Eisenherz and Metro) as well as prominent SA sires (Blinkbou Herz, Kalhei and Profeet). The progeny of these sires has been tested across many herds and numerous calves. We have the privilege to see the benefits of these sires in our herd.

PJD2059 P Brand seun van Dan_edited.jpg

Econotech Simmentaler Bulls: Class of 2020

 

Reproduction traits, which excel under various veld conditions, are the main profit drivers of cattle farming. Our Class of 2020 Bulls are prime examples of these breeding objectives. Everyone excels, therefore, in Calving Ease, Fertility and Body Condition.

A sorting excercise with emphasis on calving ease and reproduction was done on all the active Simmentaler bulls born in 2022 to 2022 (April 2024). The criteria were based on bulls in the top 10% of the SA 2022 crop for ebv's regarding Calving Ease (CED) and Reproduction (SS, DC, Rib and Rump Fat) and, lastly, SBI (Selection Breeders Index). Ranking was according to the ebv for 200 days. Fourteen bulls were ranked with six from Econotech Simmentaler. Those bulls from our herd are three from the 2020 class (PJD2015, PJD2024 and PJD2059), two from the 2021 class (PJD219 and PPJD2110) and one from the 2022 class (PJD2230).

The attached table gives more details on every bull. More information on the pedigree, breeding traits according to ebv’s as well as the status of each bull versus the SA 2022 crop, follow below.

Econotech Brand, PJD2059 P (Son of Dan)

 

Brand, like all the other members of the 2020 Class, exhibits a strong fertile dam lineage. Five dams had eight or more calves in their respective lifetimes. His dam, PJD179 P, had to date five calves with an ICP of 345 days.

 

Brand is a triple curve bender regarding calving ease, reproduction and growth traits. For calving ease he boasts with a top 1% (CED) as well as a top 5% for birth weight. His reproduction traits consist of a low milk ebv (lower 30%) and top 10% for scrotal size (SS) and Days to Calving (DC) in regard to the SA 2022 crop. His growth parameters are rather moderate with his 400 days growth ebv being in the top 40% and his MCW in the bottom 25%. Reproduction is also about body condition with Brand ranking in the top 5% for Rib and Rump Fat respectively. In summary, his economic selection indexes are in the top 5% and 1% for SBI and SPI respectively.

 

Brand is ranked 13th out of 14 bulls according to its 200 days growth ebv in the above-mentioned sorting exercise, which is based on various calving ease and reproduction traits. He has also strong body condition traits coupled to a lower than average Mature Cow Weight which makes him very adaptable to a range of climatic conditions..

KALANT P: high REPRODUCTION and high GROWTH plus FEED EFFICIENCY

 

Econotech Siya, PJD2024 P (Son of Kalant P)

Siya is ranked 5th out of 14 bulls according to its 200 days growth ebv in the above-mentioned sorting exercise, which is based on various calving ease and reproduction traits. He has also strong body condition traits which makes him very adaptable to a range of climatic conditions.

 

His economic selection indexes are in the top 5% to 1% for SBI and SP respectively. Again, Siya should also inherit the feed-efficiency genes of his sire, Kalant.

His dam, PJD1633, has produced three stud bulls to date. Her dam, on the other hand, was one of our most fertile cows ever with 11 calves and an ICP of 364 days. 

Having two polled parents, Siya has a 25% chance of being double polled (homozygous polled). If Siya is homozygous polled all his offspring will be polled.

Econotech Simmentaler Bulls: Class of 2021

 

The Class of 2021 excel in those breeding traits which underpin our herd’s main attributes, namely Calving Ease, Fertility, Body Condition and Growth (see attached table).

 

SONS OF DAN

Econotech Harold PJD219 P

Harold is a solid built sire with top condition traits such as ebv's for Rib and Rump Fat in the top 1% of the SA crop for 2022. He is also an excellent example of reproduction genetics with his ebv's for Days to Calving as well as Scrotum Size in the top 5%.

 

Harold is also included in the above-mentioned sorting exercise. He is ranked 10th out of 14 bulls according to its 200 days growth ebv. In fact, Harold's ebv's for these traits used in this exercise are everyone in the top 5% of the SA 2022 crop. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Econotech Van Straaten PJD2112 P

 

Van Straaten is a blend of modern genetics (Zolerz and Dan) and a major sire from a former period, Jadhal Ibbie (sired 2437 calves in his career). Van Straaten is an outstanding success regarding his genetic attributes and built.  His reproduction traits, SS and DC, are both in the top 5% of the SA crop. Condition traits, Rib and Rump Fat, are also in the top 5%. The growth indicator, ebv for 400 days, is in the top 25%, whereas his 200 days of 18 is only in the top 40%. Nevertheless, Van Straaten’s graph is that of a typical curve bender, the signature of the Econotech Simmentaler Herd.

PJD2112 Screenshot 2024-03-20 175443_edited.jpg

Van Straaten PJD2112 P

Van Straaten (left) and Arlo PJD2118 (right)

SONS OF KALANT PJD1565 P

 

Econotech Kobus PJD2110 P

Kobus is ranked 4th out of 14 bulls according to its 200 days growth ebv in the above-mentioned sorting exercise, which is based on various calving ease and reproduction traits. He has, as is the case with Siya, strong body condition traits which makes him very adaptable to a range of climatic conditions.

 

His economic selection indexes are in the top 5% to 1% for SBI and SP respectively. Kobus should inherit the feed-efficiency genes of his sire, Kalant (NFI-P = -0.08, top 15%).

His dam, PJD1633, has produced three stud bulls to date. Her dam, on the other hand, was one of our most fertile cows ever with 11 calves and an ICP of 364 days. 

Having two polled parents, Kobus has a 25% chance of being double polled (homozygous polled). A homozygous polled bull would produce only polled offspring.

PJD2110 feb24_edited.jpg

ECONOTECH ARLO PJD2118 P

Arlo has, as is the case with all the other sons of Kalant, strong body condition traits which makes him very adaptable to a range of climatic conditions.

 

His economic selection indexes are in the top 5% for SBI as well as for SPI. Arlo should inherit the feed-efficiency genes of his sire, Kalant (NFI-P = -0.08, top 15%) and those of the sires Kalhei (NFI-P = -0.12, top 5%) and Jimsu (NFI-P = -0.25, top 1%). Arlo is a genuine curve bender regarding calving ease (CED in top 5%) and growth (400 days in top 30%, whereas his MCW is in the bottom 45%).

His dam, PJD1447 P, has produced two excellent dams to date. Her dam (PJD103), on the other hand, was one of our most fertile cows ever with 10 calves and an ICP of 378 days. She also produced three impressive stud bulls. 

Having two polled parents, Arlo, has a 25% chance of being double polled (homozygous polled). A homozygous polled bull would produce only polled offspring.

 

PJD2118 25april24_edited.jpg

SON OF TIARK WC1221 P

 

Econotech Lewkowitz PJD2114 P

Lewkowitz is polled with both of his parents being polled as well. He has, therefore, a 25% chance of being homozygous polled. This would mean that all his offspring will be polled as well.

His fertility traits such as Days to Calving and Scrotum Size are respectively in the top 15% and 10% of the SA crop. HIs condition traits regarding Rib and Rump Fat as well as Intra Muscular Fat are also in the top 5% to 10% respectively. These traits will strengthen his ability to breed fertile offspring.

Econotech Simmentaler Bulls: Class of 2022

 

The Class of 2022 excel in those breeding traits which underpin our herd’s main attributes, namely Calving Ease, Fertility, Body Condition and Growth (see attached table).

SONS OF KOLBE PJD1929 P

 

Kolbe P was a bull par excellence. He integrated the feed efficiency of his sire, Kalant, and the fertility and body condition of his dam, PJD1633 P. His dam has Zolerz as sire (with a DC = -9.2) and a grand father, Blinkbou Herz (with a CD = -5.6). Kolbe's own DC equals -6.0. His four sons, listed below, have similar high fertility traits.

ECONOTECH PJD2217 P

Apart from the excellent breeding traits of PJD2217's sire, Kolbe, his dam has also produced fine offspring. His traits represent a curve bender regarding Calving Ease (CED and CEM in the top 10% and 5% respectively of the SA crop of 2022). The same applies to his reproduction traits with Scrotal Size (SS) in the top 1%. Growth is modest, but still representing a curve.

ECONOTECH PJD 2219 P

Although this bull, PJD2219 P, has been vetted by the association's judge, the process of ascertaining his parenthood is still underway.

His dam, PJD1326, is a three star cow with a formidable set of sires, such as Kalhei (DC = -8.1 and NFI-P = -0.12) and Profeet. PJD2219 has a high fertility score of DC = -4.1 (in the top 5% of the SA crop). He boasts also with high growth traits with his 400 days in the top 10%.

ECONOTECH PJD2223 P

PJD2223 P was sired by Kolbe P x PJD1531 P. He has a 25% chance of being homozygous polled as both his parents are polled. The same can be said of two of the other sons of Kolbe, namely PJD2217 P and PJD2230 P.

HIs mother, PJD1531 P, was sired by Ibbie, a renowned AI bull with 2427 calves over 181 herds. PJD2223 P has excellent traits for Calving Ease, Reproduction and Grow

ECONOTECH PJD2230 P

Although this bull, PJD2230 P, has been vetted by the association's judge, the process of ascertaining his parenthood is still underway.

 

PJD2230 P is a real curve bender regarding Calving Ease, Reproduction and Growth. His Days to Calcing (DC = -6.0) is in the top 1% of the SA crop for 2022. This comes from his sire, Kolbe, as well as his dam, PJD1638 P (with a DC of -7.6). He bends also the growth curve with the following ebv's (% of SA crop in brackets), namely 200 days at 17 (50%), 400 days at 30 (30%), 600 days at 37 (30%) and MCW at 29 (70%).

 

PJD2230 is ranked 9th out of 14 bulls according to its 200 days growth ebv in the above-mentioned sorting exercise, which is based on various calving ease and reproduction traits. These traits are each, like those of Harold, in the top 1 or 5% of the SA 2022 crop. 

  

bottom of page