Crowds from all around the country emerged to the village of Glengar, Doon, Co. Limerick, property of Mr. James Ryan, who farms under the ‘Tipperary Aubracs’ prefix on Sunday 29th May last for a farm walk in conjunction with the 19th Irish Aubrac Society AGM.
Consisting of 65 acres, James took over the family farm in 1984 following the death of his father Denis.
The next year saw a change of farming system for the Ryan family, converting from dairying to suckling, as James was working full-time off the farm.
Upon a visit James made to David Clarke Livestock, Westmeath back in February 2012 in order to deliver two bulls, a group of French Pedigree Aubrac in-calve heifers caught his eye. A purchase of five cows in-calve to a Culard Charolais bull was made the following year.
After soon realising ‘Aubrac cows have everything a farmer could wish for’ James purchased twelve Pedigree weanling heifers in 2013 and sought advice from Phillippe Labarbarie of French Aubrac Union. ‘Montrozier’ a stockbull from France was then imported as a result.
In order to increase the herd, a number of in-calve heifers and cows have been purchased, with the herd now counting over 35 cows of which the majority are four and five stars, with James’ hopes for the future to entail the overall improvement of the herd’s quality.
A recent venture for Mr. Ryan was the finishing of Aubrac bulls.
Five young bulls, born in October 2014 and weaned in July 2015, were fed 3kgs of ration daily until housing period. Around mid-October 2015 they were housed and received 5kgs weanling ration, until December where they received an additional 5kgs.
In January of 2016 the bulls were slaughtered in ABP Cahir, averaging a carcass weight of 404kg, one E grade, four U+, averaging €1680.
Tag No - Carcass Weight - Grade - Age(Months) - €
IE141082340336 - 425.71KG U+2= 14 €1741.15
IE341421230524 - 400.23KG U+3- 14 €1684.97
IE341421240525 - 429.83KG E-3- 14 €1835.37
IE141082330335 - 399.64KG U+2- 14 €1634.53
IE341421210514 - 367.50KG U+2= 14 €1503.08
Recently appointed PRO of Irish Aubrac Society, Pj McGrath, Whitestown, Stratford-on-Slaney, Co. Wicklow gave an insight into to his personal experience on the day of the use of Aubrac on a dairy herd. The dairy herd comprises of 170 Autumn and Spring calving cows of which are mainly Holstein , along with 30 Suckler Cows. The suckler cow herd consists of mainly LM X FR and AU X FR.
Pj outlined the benefit of using Aubrac on the dairy herd.
- Calving ease- especially calving down maiden heifers at 24 months.
- Small, hardy calves that thrive quickly.
- Significantly less issues with lameness in bulls.
- Bulls very active, more compact calving and reduced calving interval.
- Excellent Kill-Out % with more U and R Grading bulls from the dairy herd compared to when other breeds were used.
- Aubrac X Bulls from the dairy herd are slaughtered at 21- 24 months, with an average carcase weights ranging from 390- 420Kgs grading U and R, achieving the required fat scores.
On the day of the AGM, James Donnellan, Chairman of the Irish Aubrac Society emphasised that Aubrac cattle are performing excellent on the Star ratings and easily meet the requirements of Beef Genomics Scheme.
Calverstown Koala is the latest Aubrac bull selected by ICBF for the ICBF G€N€ Ireland Programme, following the success of Ballinclea Iveco and Slaneymill Jack 687.
Koala is a 5 star bull for both Maternal and Terminal indexes, with a rating of €163 on replacement index and an estimated calving difficulty of 3.3%. He is from the herd of Calverstown Aubracs which was established 20 years ago, with the current objective to strive to constantly up-grade the standard of stock produced.
He is the sixth calf of his dam ‘Calverstown Bodalla’, who is a described as being a ‘consistent breeder’ by her owners, with a calving internal of 359 days and no assisted calving. Koala’s sire ‘Four Candles’ was purchased in France out of the highly rated Boubal herd and is from the herd’s best performing bloodline.
Four Candles has sired over 200 calves, with very little calving difficulty. His he produced daughters of excellent maternal quality, while on the other hand his progeny that have been slaughtered have performed extremely, well with a total 90% of bullocks U grade.
The best of his sons have been sold on to both suckler and dairy herds as stock bulls.
Straws now available to purchase through ICBF/ G€N€ Ireland, for both Pedigree and Commercial use.
Call: 023 882 or 045 521 573
Straws €5, with a minimum of 5 straws per order.
Brief History of Aubrac Breed:
Aubracs were initially imported in Ireland back in 1992 to Skibbereen, from U.K as embryos- one heifer and two bulls. This followed on to the next shipment of in-calf and maiden heifers from France to Co. Kildare in 1996. The continued interest resulted in the establishment of the Irish Aubrac Society in 1998 , with an approximate count of 120 members, with membership increasing on an annual basis.
The Irish Aubrac Society intends to host a number of Farm walks this Summer, along with exhibitions at a number of Agricultural Shows.
The Society will host their Annual Show and Sale at Tullamore Mart in October also.
See www.aubrac.ie for further information.