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Speckle Park breeders bring home two Grand Champion awards

Purely Purebred with Mike Millar: News about you from the March 2018 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Ken and Rebecca Mackenzie.
photo: Supplied

The Canadian Angus Association celebrated 50 years of Red Angus in its herd book by recognizing Ken and Rebecca Mackenzie for their 50 years of membership in the CAA. Ken’s grandfather established the Mackenzie farmstead in 1898 with an original herd of Shorthorn cattle. The Mackenzie Brothers family operation, composed of Ken and his four brothers Ted, Mark, Don and Rodney, imported the first Red Angus genetics into Canada in the form of one herd sire, one cow-calf pair, and two bred heifers. Ken purchased his first cows while attending university. Like many producers today, he also worked off the farm. Ken taught school and his brother Rodney helped a great deal showing cattle. One of their biggest highlights was showing a Chevron cow that placed 21 times and won 17 grand champion titles. Ken and Rebecca’s grandson, Braydon Gough, has kept some of this bloodline in the herd. Before they retire to Golden, B.C., Ken and Rebecca are preparing for their final bull sale March 13 at Dawson Creek, B.C. Like many other Angus producers, they will stay involved in the business.


The Canadian Limousin Association reports that 66 new members joined the association in 2017, with 46 of those being junior members. They saw a slight increase in the number of females in their Whole Herd Enrollment program and across the country Limousin herd size averaged one cow more per herd than in 2016, a small but positive sign of expansion. The association registered 436 more head in 2017 as compared to the previous calendar year. The association also reports a marked increase in the number of docility records and ultrasound data submitted by members during 2017, as well as an increase in the number of animals genotyped. Members of the CLA transferred 630 bulls to 452 commercial buyers in 2017, a slight increase over the 624 bulls transferred to 438 commercial buyers in 2016.


Speckle Park breeders Curtis and Dustin McAleer of McAleer Ranching, Unity, Sask., took the Grand Champion Pen of 3 Bulls banner and the Grand Champion Cattleman’s Choice banner, with their bull D.A.M. DOTS 94A ELECTRIC 31E (photo at top of page) in January at the Peace Country Bull Congress in Dawson Creek, B.C. ELECTRIC is said to be the first Speckle Park bull to win an interbreed competition; same for the Pen of 3 Bulls. The McAleers sold a half share in ELECTRIC to Drew Lehr of Lehr Ranching. Their bull sale is April 3 at Dryland Cattle Trading Corporation in Veteran, Alta.


As a part of the “Zoetis Supports Ag” program, Zoetis has partnered with the Cattlemen’s Young Leaders (CYL) program to help develop leaders within the Canadian beef industry.


ONL Cool Cub 7C.
photo: Supplied

The 49th American International Charolais Association’s National Show at National Western Stock Show in Denver had approximately 135 head go through the ring; Canadian Charolais genetics were well represented. Canadian-bred ONL Cool Cub 7C (photo above), bred by O’Neill Livestock of Red Deer County, Alta., and exhibited by Aces Wild Ranch of Weatherford, Texas was slapped with the National Reserve Grand Champion Bull.

Bred by Sharodon Farms, Omemee, Ont., the Reserve Champion Junior Bull Sharodon Double Vision 1D was exhibited by Kay-R Charolais, Waskatenau, Alta.; Elder Charolais, Coronach, Sask.; Sharodon Farms, Omemee, Ont.; Polzin Cattle, Darwin, Minnesota, and Thomas Ranch, Harrold, South Dakota. United States semen rights on Sharodon Double Vision 1D (photo below) sold in the Charolais in the Rockies Sale for US$19,500.

Double Vision 1D.
photo: Supplied


The Toronto Royal Winter Fair has dropped its long-running Queen’s Guineas Show and Sale from this year’s schedule. The once-popular youth steer show has lost its following, with only 37 entries in 2017 compared to as many as 300 in the hay days of the ’70s. Barn space was another factor, especially with the growing popularity of the Junior Beef Show that attracted 300 entries last year. Finally, as one official allowed, there was a growing concern with holding an event where the winning steers went straight to market at a national show when most of the ticket buyers are from the city.


Here’s a heads-up to members of the Canadian Charolais Youth Association. If you are looking to travel to events involving the Charolais breed or the cattle industry, the association has a travel scholarship available. Applicants must fill out an application form and send in a write-up of their involvement in the cattle industry, where they wish to travel and the event they want to attend, as well as what they hope to gain from the trip. Some of the travel opportunities include American International Junior Charolais Association, Australian National Youth Stampede, Canadian Beef Industry Conference or any other cattle industry event that would be beneficial to the member in the breed. The application must be submitted a minimum of two months in advance of the event. For more details and to submit your application email [email protected].


JYF Deadhead 296D (photo below) was the Division 3 Champion bull at Denver. The North American Limousin Foundation thinks he could be the first Canadian bred and exhibited bull to win a division on the hill.

JYF Deadhead 296D.
photo: Supplied


Judy Cummer has retired from the Canadian Charolais Association (CAA) after more than 33 years. Judy has been a long-standing and dedicated employee of the CCA and was registry manager for a number of years. During her time, she witnessed many changes in the association and the beef industry. Although she’ll be missed by all, we sincerely wish Judy nothing but health and happiness in retirement.

The association has also announced the appointment of Sally Storch as a full-time member of the registry team to assist manager Lois Chivilo. Sally has been involved with ranching for several years with particular interests in dressage and ranch roping as well as cattle AI and management protocols. She replaces Piper Whelan who is now the field editor of Canadian Cattlemen.


The Canadian Simmental Association is looking for a programs co-ordinator. Part of the role will include working with the CSA team in developing and implementing programs focusing on marketing, communication, genetic improvement and education that targets all segments of the Canadian beef industry. For more information contact the Canadian Simmental Association.


BNC GLENLEES 429 Nellie 71D.
photo: Supplied

Congratulations to the owners of BNC GLENLEES 429 Nellie 71D (photo above) who took the top spot in the global Miss Hereford World competition at the Ft. Worth Stock Show; organized by Herefordbreeders.net. BNC GLENLEES 429 Nellie 71D is the fourth Canadian-bred and -owned female to take the top spot in this global completion in the last six years. She was bred by BNC and Glenlees Polled Here­fords and is owned by Blairs Ag Cattle Company.

As for the bulls, RSK E 2046 Digby ET 20C (photo below) took the top bull in North American and placed third overall in the global Champion of the World competition. RSK E 2046 Digby ET 20C was bred by Harvie Ranching and is owned by RSK Farms of Brandon, Man., and Elke Here­fords of Townsend, Montana.

RSK E 2046 Digby ET 20C.
photo: Supplied


One of the recipients of the 2018 Sask­atchewan Livestock Association Honour Scroll is Canadian Beef Breeds Council Chair Garner Deobald and his wife Lori. Garner and Lori and their family raise purebred Charolais cattle at Hodgeville, Sask., under the farm name Cedarlea Farms. Garner has kept busy serving on many boards including the Saskatchewan and Canadian Charolais Associations. He feels blessed to have been asked to judge many purebred shows including Canadian Western Agribition, RBC Supreme, Farmfair International Supreme, Toronto Royal as well as Calgary Stampede. As part of his role with Canadian Beef Breeds Council, he was appointed executive vice-director to the China-Canada Beef Industry Council in June 2017. Congratulations to the Deobald family as a proud supporter of the Charolais breed and beef industry.


Canadian Young Leaders

Melissa Lee.
photo: Supplied

Melissa Lee,
Mentor, Clint Morasch, Lazy MC Angus

While growing up on a large mixed farm near Rossburn, Man., Melissa developed a passion for the natural environment and agriculture. It was during this time she purchased her first purebred Red Angus cows and began raising and selling seedstock.

She obtained an adventure tourism diploma from Lakeland College and an environmental studies degree from the University of Alberta. Her education led her to a career with Environment and Parks, working initially seasonally and then becoming a full-time conservation officer. Melissa currently works out of Dinosaur Provincial Park near Brooks, Alta., where part of her duties include fostering relationships with ranchers and landowners in and around the park.

Melissa and her husband Leon own and operate Diamond L Ranch near Oyen, Alta., where they raise Red Angus seedstock for commercial and purebred herds. Each spring they market their bulls at the Medicine Hat Spring Bull Show and Sale as well as by private treaty in Alberta and Manitoba. They also train and sell ranch and performance horses and feel there is no better way to raise their children, Kacey and Keaton, than in the ranching lifestyle.

Rachel Verwey.
photo: Supplied

Rachel Verwey
Mentor: Tara Mullhern Davidson, Lonesome Dove Ranch

Rachel grew up on a large mixed family farm near Portage la Prairie, Man., where they raise 200 commercial Charolais cows, milk 100 dairy cows, and grain farm 7,000 acres. It is safe to say Rachael has experienced a lot of different aspects of the agriculture industry.

She became involved in beef 4-H at a young age and remained a member of the Gainsborough Combined 4-H Club for 13 years during which time she became an active member of the Canadian Charolais Youth Association, holding office on both the national and Manitoba junior Charolais associations, as well as hosting judging clinics and helping out with the local 4-H shows.

Rachael is currently enrolled in her last year of university at the University of Manitoba, and will be graduating in April with her bachelor’s degree in animal systems. She held office on the Faculty of Agriculture Student Organization for four years, was an active member of the Faculty Stockman’s club and spent her summers completing her internship with the Federated Co-operative Excellence in Agriculture Scholarship program. After university Rachael plans to work as an agronomist with her local co-operative and become an ambassador for the scholarship program. She also plans to become more involved in her family’s farming operation. Rachael is a passionate agvocate, volunteering at numerous events for Ag More Than Ever, Agriculture in the Classroom and Dairy Farmers of Manitoba.

James Jenkins.
photo: Supplied

James Jenkins
Mentor: John Cross, A7 Ranche

James grew up near Okotoks, Alta., on the family farm that became a Century farm in 2015. Beef cattle have been a near-lifelong endeavour for James beginning at the age of nine when he joined a 4-H beef club. Knowing that he wanted to continue in the beef industry, he decided to study agriculture production, with a major in livestock production. While working part time for a local seed stock producer, James fell in love with the Fleckvieh Simmentals and purchased his first heifers in the fall of 2006. After several years he has now built a 70-head cow-calf operation made up of both purebred and commercial cows that spring and fall calve.

Being selected as a finalist for the Cattlemen’s Young Leaders program is a great honour and he cannot wait to continue his learning and networking within the cattle industry.

About the author

National account manager

As National account manager for Canadian Cattlemen, I work with all major accounts including equipment manufacturers, ad agency's and national breed associations. When I'm not busy working and promoting Canadian Cattlemen magazine, my family and I are running a purebred herd of Simmental cattle at Grandora, Sask.

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