Dude's marbling stands out

Dude's marbling stands out


Stock and Land Beef
Tania Weller shows off some of the Speckle Park cattle.

Tania Weller shows off some of the Speckle Park cattle.

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HAILED an "impressive bovine" by judge Stephen Branson, Mortlake, at the 2014 Royal Melbourne Show, Snowline Such A Dude has gone on to shine the spotlight on the Speckle Park breed's high quality carcase.

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HAILED an "impressive bovine" by judge Stephen Branson, Mortlake, at the 2014 Royal Melbourne Show, Snowline Such A Dude has gone on to shine the spotlight on the Speckle Park breed's high quality carcase.

The 1000-kilogram beast has an eye muscle area of 132 square centimetres and was praised by Mr Branson for his structure, confident presence and phenomenal muscling.

The three year-old bull, bred by Snowline Speckle Park owners Tania and Mike Weller and business partners and neighbours, Wayne and Rick Munt, has gone on to promote the breed's meat marbling strengths.

He has been registered with Agri-Gene, for semen sales, along with his fellow stud sire Wattle Grove Rocket E24 who was purchased for $20,000 in 2012 and has since sold over 1000 semen straws.

Growing demand for the breed has been attributed to interest from top rated restaurants and success in carcase competitions in their native country, Canada.

"The meat quality is why we first started with the Speckle Parks," co-principal Ms Weller said.

"We did a trial with a 14 month-old steer that was cryovaced and eaten every week for 12 weeks to monitor the breed's shelf life. It had the most superior tenderness and was selected the most flavoursome steak anyone had eaten."

The breed has won seven of the past 10 iconic Calgary Stampede carcase competitions in Canada and was introduced to Australia in 2007.

It was delivered from a cross of White Park, Angus and Shorthorn-cross.

Situated in the heart of the Kiewa Valley, at Kergunyah South, Snowline Speckle Park has been blitzing the show circuit since their establishment in 2012.

Numbers have grown from six females and one bull to 60 breeding cows, bulls and calves in 2.5 years.

The Weller-Munt partnership also run a 300-head commercial Angus herd which is used for crossing with Speckle Park bulls to produce a first cross animal with high growth rates.

The pure bred bull calves average 30-35kg birth weights and by nine months-old average 320kg liveweight.

"We wean early because the bulls are very active and by eight months-old if they are not off mum, they are trying to climb on," Ms Weller said.

Being a young breed to Australia, Ms Weller said the stud had taken its own measures to data record birth weights, 200-day growth, weaning weights and 400-day weights.

She said their weight gains averaged 10-14 per cent heavier than their Angus and Angus-Charolais mates at weaning.

Further success is on the horizon with the flushed progeny of Almarlea Melissa F49 and Rocket E24.

A bull and heifer calf from the joining could be the next big thing for the breed, according to Ms Weller who said they were identified as superior calves at their September birth.

"We looked at the best and worst attributes of both and thought they would balance out to the perfect animal," she said.

At their inaugural entry in Beef Week in 2014, visitors were treated to Speckle Park beef from a three year-old Angus-Speckle steer weighing 960kg, who dressed over 61pc with a marble score of seven.

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