Benchmarking performance a priority at Innesdale
VISITORS are welcome year-round at Innesdale Angus stud, at Winnindoo in central Gippsland.
Consequently, people take advantage of the opportunity to view bulls on several open days hosted by Geoff McInnes.
The Innesdale stud began in 1960, by Bruce and Raie McInnes.
Geoff McInnes, their son, came on board as a 17 year-old, straight out of school and keen on benchmarking performance.
Raie McInnes has continued to be involved in the stud, after Bruce’s death 20 years ago.
A 150-breeder self-replacing herd is used to breed 60 bulls annually – a mix of 40 two year-old bulls are sold by private treaty in the autumn and 20 yearlings sold in spring as heifer bulls.
“Once the 2 year-old bulls are available from March 1, it usually takes two days to a week before they’re sold,” Geoff McInnes said.
“Some of the heaviest bulls are 700 kilograms, so they’ve got plenty of weight in them.”
The 117 hectares of flood irrigated black sandy loam country enables the bulls to be raised as pasture-fed, with adlib access to hay.
About 28 hectares of irrigated farmland is also available to grow enough hay to harvest 150 tonnes of ryegrass hay in an average season.
“Our steers are all sold at weaning, to one client at Nar Nar Goon who finishes them – turning them off at 660kg as two-year-olds,” he said.
“We try to breed bulls that are ideal for breeding cattle for pasture-fed grass-finishers.”
While the stud uses its own bulls, Mr McInnes also buys in semen.
This year will see the first sons for sale of Sav Resource, an American bull.
“These will be his first sons available in Australia, Sav Resource is one of the heaviest-muscled bulls, and his progeny do very well on pasture,” Mr McInnes said.
The stud kept two of Sav’s progeny and used these bulls to join heifers in the Innesdale herd – they are Jasper J91 and Equator K19.
“Equator’s first sons were on display last year and will be available for sale in 2018,” he said.
The first sons of Millah Murrah Reality K214 were sold last year, and his second sons will also be available in 2018, as yearlings with low birth weight for joining with heifers.
“We record everything about the cattle – the calves are all weighed at birth, then three times more as they grow,” Mr McInnes said.
“They’re scanned and DNA-tested; and vaccinated for Pestivirus and Vibriosis – they leave here with a clean bill of health.”
The stud was registered MN3, so has been able to maintain that level to the new JBAS system – with a JBAS score of 8.
Each year, 90 per cent of the bulls are bought by return clients in Gippsland; the remainder go into Victoria’s western district and to Tubbut, NSW.