Since starting out in the beef business in 1987, Colin Keevers and Lisa Martin have built a thriving registered stud Angus cattle operation, Alumy Creek Angus, situated at Coldawinda, 4km south east of Tenterfield.
Lisa said the key to the success of their pure Angus herd has held true for the last three decades.
“We select for fertility, good muscle, exceptional carcass traits and temperament; we want quiet, easy to handle cattle,” she said.
She said the often freezing conditions at Coldawinda are very tough on the cattle they breed.
“If they can meet our criteria of producing a live calf each year in these conditions, than they’ll perform even better in a warmer part of the country.”
Lisa said they’ve always exclusively used an AI program in their herd which now runs 10 generations deep.
“By accessing global genetics it allows us to use, say a $500,000 bull, that we obviously wouldn’t be purchasing for our herd.”
For the first time, last year they utilised genomics for their entire bull drop, and were pleasantly surprised to find out that their top performers were in the top one per cent nationally for growth and carcass traits.
Colin and Lisa are passionate about their rural lifestyle, and the contract freeze branding arm of the business sees them visit many properties across Qld and NSW.
“We work with a lot of herds and brand around 6000 Angus bulls per year, that’s the advantage of being in a rural business, you get to network and interact with a lot of great people.”
Such clients include commercial Angus breeders Charlie and Kate James, Lyn-Dale, Wandoan, who’ve purchased seven bulls from Alumy Creek since 2012 all of which have performed very well for the stud.
Kate said they primarily sell weaners and grow out bulls for commercial sale and Alumy Creek bulls provide them with the flexibility to meet differing markets.
“Having the flexibility that the Angus breed provides has been important for us during the recent drought years.
“The Alumy Creek bulls have given us great performance and excellent calving rates. They also have great quiet temperaments which makes them very easy to work with.
She said they’re currently in the process of buying Alumy Creek heifers to put in their breeding herd.
Lisa said each year Alumy creek offers close to 150 stud cows and followers and 50 fat bulls each year, at on-property and private paddock sales. They’ll be holding their annual on-property bull sale at Coldawinda on June 17.
“We always advise people attending the sale (especially the Queenslanders) to bring an extra coat as it’s getting pretty cold in Tenterfield by mid-year.”