DAJORY Murray Grey stud will open its farm gates at “Concord Park”, Grahamvale, on day three of Stock & Land Beef Week.
The stud began in 1998 with 10 pregnancy-tested-in-calf (PTIC) females, using initial bloodlines from Lindsay, The Glen and Willalooka Murray Grey studs.
The McRae family has been involved in Stock & Land Beef Week for about 10 years, and enjoy being able to showcase the operation to visitors.
Carolyne McRae runs the stud with sons Josh, Ryan and Daniel.
They will have sale animals, including 2016-drop bulls and heifers, on display, as well as some registered and commercial cows.
“It’s a great opportunity for people to visit the farms to see how different studs operate and share their ideas,” Ms McRae said.
“We do have animals on offer for Beef Week, but often clients just use Beef Week to compare studs and see what bloodlines we’re using, then they’ll come back after the event.”
They sell animals at multi-vendor sales, including the Murray Grey National Show and Sale and the Premier Murray Grey Sale at Wodonga, and privately as well.
Ms McRae said the stud’s focus was producing low birthweight bulls, while maintaining carcase qualities and temperament.
“Temperament has always been the big thing for us, because the boys were quite young when we started the stud, so we needed quiet cattle for them to be around,” she said.
“Our commercial and stud clients are looking for low birthweight bulls, with good eye muscle area (EMA) and intramuscular fat (IMF).
“We were fairly concentrated on good milking females in the early days which has paid off, and flowed through to our current breeders.”
Sourcing top quality genetics is essential, and the Dajory stud has used artificial insemination (AI) and embryo transfer (ET) programs to grow the breeding herd to 150 females.
“We did a huge amount of ET early on the grow the numbers quickly, and we still do a lot of AI, using semen from our own stud bulls, as well as bulls from other high performing studs in Australia,” Ms McRae said.
The stud is run alongside a small commercial operation, which has attracted strong interest from buyers in the past few years.
“There’s a good commercial market for good quality females,” she said.
“We had one lady who bought three heifers that were not far off calving and wanted the rest of the mob, because she wanted some quieter cattle.
“That’s the big benefit of the Murray Grey breed, and I think that flows through to their carcases with their meat quality.”