Tarwin Poll Herefords continues to lead Australia’s only grass-fed steer trial at Lardner Park after the fourth weigh on October 18.
The second last weighing before the steers are turned off in late November revealed the average weight had reduced slightly to 1.18kg/day, with the overall still tracking at 1.26 kg/day.
The trial began at Warragul, Victoria, in July with 70 mixed breed steers entered from around Victoria from 26 producers.
Lardner Park Trial coordinator Anthony Willems said the 69 steers were weighed in just 14 minutes using the Gallagher weigh system operated by Gippsland Territory Manager Scott Osborne.
“Larry Cutler from Performance Feeds has supplied another 1000 litres of Anipro for the final period and we hope to see the benefits in finishing the steers and carcase quality,” Anthony said.
David Miekle, Tarwin Poll Herefords, Meeniyan, has two teams in the competition with average daily gains ranging from 1.14 to 1.77kg and pair averages of 1.6 and 1.45kg/day.
The top performing steer recorded 1.77kg, compared to the herd average of 1.18kg, and had an overall average daily gain of 1.53kg, compared to the herd average of 1.26kg.
The team from Charallan Poll Herefords, Pearsondale, recorded average daily gain of 1.43/kg and an overall daily gain 1.26 and 1.51kg to give a pair average of 1.39kg.
Moorville Poll Herefords, Moorooduc, recorded 1.11 and 0.97kg/day for an overall average daily gain of 1.34 and 1.14kg to result in a pair average of 1.24kg.
The two teams from Tarcombe Herefords, Ruffy, ranged from 0.91 to 1.4kg/day and had a pair average of 1.3 and 1.18kg/day.
The black baldy/Angus team from Riverbend recorded an average daily gain of 1.11 and 1.43kg to give them a pair average of 1.13kg/day.
The team has been entered by commercial producers Barb Stewart and John Sonnet who farm in a 1000mm rainfall zone at Kernot, Vic.
The couple cross Angus bulls with their spring calving Hereford cow herd to take advantage of the hybrid vigour and have met with success in the past with black baldy steers in the Lardner Park Trial.
They turn off feeder steers to JBS Australia and unjoined heifers as future breeders or to Greenhams.
Barb likes to use the Lardner Park trial as a benchmark for their own steers and is keen to chase superior eating quality in the carcase.
“It keeps you in touch with the latest technology and animal health developments and pastures, that we can take on board with what we are doing at home,” she said.
“The black baldy steer has soared ahead in the trial. It’s all about meeting the specifications and having steers go in at the right weight, and estimating how much weight they will put on.”
Barb likes the docility, doing ability, milking ability and fertility of the Hereford breeding females.
The fifth and final weighing will take place at Lardner Park on November 28 at 11am.