Friday, June 15, 2012

An Analytical Look Back

This is finally the last thing we get to do for our class, and it has flown by. We waited about eight months for or trip and it seems in a blink of an eye it was over. I had a great time, but the one thing I want to analyze and compare and contrast is the seedstockers over there. The one that was the most fun for me was Webb Black Simmentals, partly because they were so dang excited to see us, and mainly because my family and I raise Simmentals too.

The First thing I noticed is the Webbs would really love to start selling their genetics over here in the US. Their annual bull sale has grown each year tremendously, and in talking with them it would really put the cherry on top if they could sell to American producers, but since they use our genetics we already have what they got. Talking with the ranch manager they are trying to come up with something new that will impress producers here.

Webb's Prize Bull
They kept on saying that their programs over there is just a few years behind our genetics here, and they would love to catch up , but that will be difficult of them in my opinion because it all goes back to the consumer. Over in Australia their consumers want a different taste for their meat, they want a leaner cut. Over here we like that marbling. They have founds success with our genetics that’s not what I am saying, but right now we are both producing a little different type of meat, and that is what the consumer wants..

Their feeding programs differ from ours as well. It is quite a bit cheaper for them to feed improved pastures and benefit from them. We typically sell yearling bulls where they typically sell bulls older than that and up to 2 years of age. It is too expensive for them to import all the grain that we use. So it is easier for them to feed pasture, and that works for them, because that is the beef they raise for the consumer. We like that grain fed beef so it is hard for me to wrap my head around the fact the grain fed isn’t as popular.

There are definitely differences but the similarities are there too. It is interesting and appealing to see what they do, can’t, or won’t do. All-in-all one of the best experiences of my life. Here is a link to check out the Webb Black Simmi website:

Michael and I talking with Lynn Harrison the Webb Ranch Manager

Friday, June 8, 2012


This blog will not do justice to how much I learned and how much this trip influenced me. This trip really did broaden my horizon and got me outside of my comfort zone. It taught me that is more to the world than just the US, and there is plenty of other ways of raising livestock that work just as well. It was a trip of a lifetime, I thought by the time the 7th or 8th day rolled around I would want to be home, but I easily could have spent another couple weeks over there. A little bit has to do with the face I had a great group of people to go with, and we met some of the nicest and most genuine people while we were over there. I got to admit at first I was concerned about the cost, but after all that we did and learned I would do it again in a heartbeat. This experience equaled my education of the last two years I spent in college. So would I recommend this trip to other people? Of course. Asia or Africa hasn’t really intrigued me too much, but Australia did, and after visiting I am even more fascinated by the country. I really do hope to go back someday.
The group

First Ocean View

My first time on the beach was in Australia, and that I thought was pretty cool. It took me getting out of the country before I finally saw the ocean. I guess that just makes me a sheltered kid. We took a boat out to Green Island to start the day, and last night’s seafood did not sit too well with people on the boat. We did make it to Green Island, where Grant and I decided we would try to the scuba-doo instead of diving since we couldn’t swim. It is basically an underwater scooter. Ill put a picture of it up. We finally made it out to the Great Barrier Reef, and even though the sun wasn’t shining talk about beautiful. It is one of those things you can’t believe you are actually getting to see. The colors underwater were amazing. Being out on the water all day long made me realized how much I like land. I did try the snorkeling more or less to say I snorkeled on the Reef, not many people say they have done that in their life. If there is one thing I have realized about this trip it is there are a lot of people out there who did not or won’t get the opportunity I got.

Thursday, June 7, 2012


Practice is what I thought about today. I jumped on my fourth plane ever, and learned how to throw a boomerang and spear. We got up early to catch our plane to Cairns, which you all didn’t miss too much there. In the afternoon though, we visited the Tjapukai Center, an aboriginal theater. There we learned how the indigenous people believed they came to exist. They had a show in the theater, and then taught us some of their dances and how to make fire. They then taught us the art of throwing a spear and boomerang. They showed us other tools and I couldn’t help but think that people lived like this and still live like what they showed us. I couldn’t help compare them to the Native Americans as in how they are so similar yet so different. They both faced the hardships of the settlers, and both respected they land. It is good to be back in the hotel for a shower here are some more pictures for the day.

Australian College

The night before we got to meet some students from Charles Sturt University and hear about how it is different than the US and then the next mornign we visited CSU and met Dr. Chenoweth who used to be at KSU. We got tour the livestock units and see there vet hospital. It is a little smaller than I expected and I was suprised to see they were set up more for equine than anything else. There beef unit is something to see though. It is set up for the students to really learn something. Afer hanging out at CSU for awhile we stared our 5 hour trip to Sydney, and on the way we stopped at a McDonald's which I got to admit, and I hate admitting, but it was probably the best burger I had all trip.

A bull at the vet hospital
We did finally make it to Sydney and it reminds me a lot of New York City. We have a had alittle time to explore the city and have found several cool shops. We are getting ready to go on the dinner crusie around the harbor and it is hard to believe we will be by the famous opera house you see in the books and on TV.

Monday, May 28, 2012

the load out chutes in the morning fog

Cattle marketing was the biggest emphasis of our 6th day in Australia. We started our day at the Wagga Wagga sale barn, which in my opinion, was pretty dang cool or bang on as the Aussies say. Their ability to sort cattle and keep the sale moving is amazing. It is a sale barn that runs 3000 head of cattle through on a Monday, and 30,000 head of sheep on a Thursday. They do not have the auctioneer chant that we have in the states. Then a short drive across the street we saw our second abattoir, a Cargill joint venture with the Teys brothers, which was a pretty American way of doing things.  Stopped for dinner in Temora, and then continued to the Jindalee feedlot which is owned by the Cargill joint venture with the Teys  brothers as well. it was nice to see that they use HGP and feed grain because most ofnourbtrip we have heard about a lot of grass fed beef. Unfortunately since all the animal welfare controversy we couldn't snap many shots of the plant and feedlot, but still some of e coolest stops especially the sale yard, hard to describe how cool that was. We are getting ready for a night out in Wagga Wagga I ll let you know about that one tomorrow. So...... Good Morning America Pake

First timers

merino wool
The Rock
Today started with some first experiences for Lot of us. we visited the Trigger Vale Genetics sheep farm. Their flock consists of 2500 head of merino and white faced suffolks. It was the first time most of us if not all of us had seen a merino flock and you can just the quality of wool sitting on their on back. Even tho sheep isnt my forte it is interesting to see where the sheep industry stands and where it sis going. We have always talked about this merinos breed and their wool in class but it was a little cool to actually see it I person. One of the most interesting stops so far has been the emu farm. I have seen emus at the zoo but to actually see them in a production setting was pretty cool.  I will put a picture below but the view from this emu farm was amazing and is the namesake for the town close by. We rounded out the day at Spry Shorthorns. We looked at their stock, and they had a BBQ for us too. It was interesting to see their herd mainly because is purebred operation but they produce for the commercial producer. In the US we have the appendix program so it is all just a little different.  We made it to the hotel in Wagga Wagga hit the bed hard  and it was ummmmm only 8:30, but free WIFI so I will put some pics up when I get some time. Happy Sunday America