3 simple steps to find your next beef bull
‘My heifers are all after repeating, I need a new bull quick.’ ‘I need a 5-star bull for the Beef Data and Genomics Programme (BDGP).’ ‘I need a bull, is there a list of local pedigree breeders anywhere?’
These are all comments that are frequently exchanged between farmers throughout the year. Finding a new stock bull has always been a job that required great thought in terms of making sure he meets all the desired traits, including: easy calving; fertility; and many more.
However, now given the data-driven world we live in, there is a huge technical element to a bull’s make-up that has to be analysed, including: the bull’s calving difficulty percentage; and his stars on the Replacement Index.
Finding a bull of your preferred breed with the ‘right’ figures – be it for calving ease or stars – can be a real challenge. That’s where the Irish Cattle Breeding Federation’s (ICBF’s) Stock Bull Finder comes in.
The Stock Bull Finder is the ICBF’s online beef bull sales section. Bulls have to meet a number of key metrics before being shown on the service.
- Only bulls that have been weighed and inspected by the ICBF in Whole Herd Performance Recording (WHPR) herds are displayed;
- WHPR is the ICBF’s on-farm performance recording programme;
- Pedigree breeders voluntarily sign up and get their herd’s independently weighed and scored by the ICBF.
- Animals in WHPR herds will have a WHPR stamp displayed beside their details, so as they are clearly identified as having come from a performance recorded herd;
- The €uro-Stars of these bulls will have higher reliabilities and so be more accurate because of the amount of data that has been recorded on them;
- For a beef farmer looking for a new stock bull, the Stock Bull Finder is the best online place to start looking. It is the only search engine for beef bulls in Ireland, where all of the bulls have been independently weighed and scored by the ICBF before being displayed.
Simple to use
The Stock Bull Finder is simple to use and requires only three steps.
- Step 1: Go to www.icbf.com and click on the Stock Bull Finder logo on the homepage;
- Step 2: Put in your search criteria as regards location, breed and stars;
- Step 3: Scroll through the bulls that come back from your search. Click on the owner’s name to get the phone number to ring to enquire about possibly buying the bull.
Click on the image below to launch the Stock Bull Finder.
The ICBF does not advise farmers to purchase any pedigree bull on figures alone. The bull must be seen. This is why in the Stock Bull Finder the actual weight recorded on each bull is shown alongside the bull’s €uro-Star data.