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November 20, 2009
Rod Wesselman

Rod Wesselman

Association Perspective

Utilize the registration paper when buying seedstock.

by Rod Wesselman

This issue of the Angus Beef Bulletin EXTRA brings with it fall weather, with the first of many hard frosts on the ground. Spring calves are being weaned and data collected here in the Northwest. The Angus business here is holding its own, with bull sales being strong and female sales being variable.

One of the strong points for buying cattle at these sales of registered bulls and females is the registration paper that comes along with the animal. Within that registration paper you will find large amounts of information. I am referring to a pedigree of known bloodlines and genetics, as well as expected progeny differences (EPDs) and other performance records. The registration paper will also inform you of the individual's known status, and the status of relatives in its pedigree, with regard to genetic defects. These are valuable tools for both the buyer and the seller.

Many years ago our dads and granddads purchased bulls based on phenotype. Today we have many tools put before us to evaluate these bulls. It is important that we use the pedigree to follow those bloodlines that will work in our environments at home. We also need to use the performance data that the registered breeders have collected to improve the cattle that we are working with today. We need to be diligent in improving the product that we produce for the consumer, along with being profitable in our operations. That is why it is so important to purchase registered Angus bulls.

Purchasing a registered Angus bull also provides you with other benefits that are provided through your seedstock producer and the American Angus Association. One of these services is an EPD update on your registered Angus bull, which will help in evaluating your bulls on a yearly basis. Another benefit is the opportunity to utilize the AngusSource® program to help enhance marketing of your calves through genetic, age and source verification. A third benefit is receiving the printed Angus Beef Bulletin five times a year to keep up on what is happening in the Angus world and to provide you with educational information through that venue.

When purchasing bulls without a registration paper, you are missing out on a tremendous amount of information and an opportunity to improve the quality and marketing of your calf crop.

If you want more information about any of the services provided through the American Angus Association, or if we can help in any way, please give me or your local regional manager a call for information.

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