McCormacks reconized for breed success

Droughtmaster society awards Ed and Carol McCormack with life membership

Beef
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Ed and Carol McCormack have been recognized for their decades of contribution to the breed at the Droughtmaster National sale.

Two of the beef industry's longstanding champions, who have been credited for the shift toward selling two-year-old bulls, have been recognised with life memberships by Droughtmaster Australia.

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Ed and Carol McCormack were awarded a life membership to the Droughtmaster Society at the Droughtmaster National bull sale, held at the CQLX in Gracemere last week. Photo: Jenny Underwood, Eversleigh & Wallace Vale Droughtmasters.

Ed and Carol McCormack were awarded a life membership to the Droughtmaster Society at the Droughtmaster National bull sale, held at the CQLX in Gracemere last week. Photo: Jenny Underwood, Eversleigh & Wallace Vale Droughtmasters.

The society honoured Ed and Carol McCormack, Dilga, Glenmorgan, during this year's Droughtmaster National bull sale at Gracemere last week.

The McCormacks established the Clonlara Droughtmaster stud back in 1969, and were acknowledged for their contribution to the Droughtmaster society and breed.

The Clonlara Droughtmaster stud is now owned and operated by their youngest son, Gus McCormack, who took over the stud with his wife Jen and three boys.

The McCormacks are proud to say all three of their children are working in the agricultural industry, with their daughter Clare working as a vet and running Coolibah Droughtmasters and their son Charlie is also a vet.

Mrs McCormack's father John Stewart-Moore has also received life membership and was one of the foundation members of the Droughtmaster breed.

"I think Dad would be smiling down on us," Mrs McCormack said.

"You look back and you realize you did create something that has endured."

Droughtmaster Australia national director Ken McKenzie said it was an honour to acknowledge Ed and Carol McCormack for their decades of support and contribution to the breed.

"Both Ed and Carol have been inspirational leaders for the Droughtmaster breed in both stud and commercial areas," Mr McKenzie said.

"Their achievements and contributions to the breed include: judging at the Brisbane Royal in 1984 and 1989; showing stud cattle over many years, with a highlight being their RNA grand champion bull in 2010.

"They were the first breeders to take a team of all two-year-old bulls to the National Sale in the early 80s, which were very well received and started the movement towards selling two-year-old rather than three-year-old bulls.

"They were also foundation members of the Droughtmaster Breedplan and great advocates for the need for objective measurement of cattle."

The McCormacks started their Clonlara cattle stud when they received some cattle from Mrs McCormack's father, as payment for agisting his cattle on their land.

"In 1969, during the drought which was one of the worst, Carol's father agisted stud cattle at our property Dilga, Glenmorgan," Mr McCormack said.

"They left 30 head of cattle behind as payment and that was the start of our herd."

The McCormacks had just drawn their 10,000 acre block close to their house, which they named Clonlara, after the area in which the McCormack family originated from in Ireland.

"We had a lot of country and a reasonable season but not a lot of stock to keep the grass down," Mrs McCormack said.

"So the time was right and we were lucky to be paid in cattle."

Her father founded the Charraboon stud at Toogoolawah and Telemon Droughtmaster stud at the family property at Hughenden, now operated by her nephew Jack and Kylie Stewart-Moore.

"So Dad was running mostly sheep, as everyone was back in those days, but he had Shorthorn cattle and they didn't do too well, because Shorthorns don't really do well in the tropics," Mrs McCormack said.

"Brahman breeds had just been introduced in the 1950s, mostly by people like Monty Atkinson and Bob Rae."

John Stewart-Moore was part of the group of breed luminaries, including Monty Atkinson, Bob Rea and Audrey Perry, all who established the Droughtmaster society.

"Dad always said he didn't create the breed, he created the society," Mrs McCormack said.

"He organised all these cattle people from all over the place into a group, which has become Droughtmaster Australia."

Ed and Carol were more than happy to share their advice for breeders in the beef industry, looking to improve their stud's genetics.

"The real advice I think is to look after the female side of your operation," Mr McCormack said.

"Be aware of very heavily muscled cattle which tends to become a fad every now and then."

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