As our mother herd begins to reach late middle age, we are in the process of deciding what we will do to replace them as they pass beyond their productive lives.
While we love our Black Irish Angus, their black hide causes them to suffer in the summer heat. Texas stockmen fix that problem in a couple of ways — go to a red or white-hided animal and/or add some Brahman blood to their herd. We are moving in both of those directions.
One of those options we are sold on has the very same DNA as the Black Angus but tolerates the heat much better. That is the Red Angus. So we picked up 5 red heifers at the Houston Livestock heifer sale and are headed to Wichita, Kansas in late March to attend sales of what are reputed to be the finest Red Angus in the country. (We ordered steaks from their producers and they were delicious.) In addition to the Kansas Red Angus we picked up some Brangus/Angus, Herefords and Angus Brahman heifers. When we put a Red Angus bull over them, we should have a steer that is heavily influenced with Angus genetics but also enough Brahman and Hereford in them to supply the heat tolerance we need. We are excited about this transition; while it is not a radical change from what we have done the past 8 years, it does incorporate what we have learned in the process and we believe it will be a step forward in our beef quality and harvest weight.