Advertiser content: Trial data has shown that a boost of up to nine per cent in weaning weights can be achieved in steers out of Angus females joined with Hereford bulls.
The benefits of the hybrid vigour in black baldy progeny has been quantified with the release of preliminary calving and weaning results from the Herefords Australia Black Baldy trial.
The crossbreeding trial is a partnership between Herefords Australia, Adelaide University, and Meat and Livestock Australia, with the cattle are being grazed at Cape Portland and Nabowla in Tasmania under the management of Musselroe Beef.
Live, carcase and meat eating quality data is being collected on the progeny through the supply chain, from birth to slaughter, and analysed by University of Adelaide professor Wayne Pitchford.
"Close to 600 commercial Angus females were artificially joined to 11 industry leading Hereford sires, along with Angus as a comparison," he said.
"The trial began in spring, 2014 and is due to finish in December, 2019 with the last of three cohorts of steers to be grass finished and processed in July in Tasmania.
"40 per cent of the calves were born to two-year-old maiden heifers and the balance to three and four-year-old mature cows.
"Preliminary results showed Hereford sired steer calves from maiden cows were three per cent heavier at weaning than Angus sired calves, while in the mature cows, Hereford sired steers were nine per cent heavier at weaning over their straight Angus siblings."
Herefords Australia general manager Andrew Donoghue said the added weaning weights produced in the trial have proven the worth of a Hereford sire in a terminal breeding program.
"During the next stage of our research we are excited to prove the added maternal value of the Hereford F1 cow based on added fertility and longevity - core profit drivers in any business," he said.
"The trial results and on-farm benchmarking data on the black baldy will give producers a complete crossbreeding package.''