Loughgare cow a milk quality leader in NI

Brian McCarron, left, Genus ABS with Ross, David and Robert Patterson on their farm near Ballynahinch. ?Loughgare Nansen Beyonce from their herd? ? ?had the highest combined fat and protein kgs in National Milk Records annual results. Photograph: Columba O'Hare
Brian McCarron, left, Genus ABS with Ross, David and Robert Patterson on their farm near Ballynahinch. ?Loughgare Nansen Beyonce from their herd? ? ?had the highest combined fat and protein kgs in National Milk Records annual results. Photograph: Columba O'Hare
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An outstanding cow from Ross Patterson’s Loughgare herd near Ballynahinch, has taken the lead in milk quality in Northern Ireland. Loughgare Nansen Beyonce had the highest combined fat and protein kgs in National Milk Records annual results for 2014.

This Moet Nansen sired cow, out of a Lord Lily dam, had a combined fat and protein figure of 1221 kgs.

Commenting on her success Ross said: “She does not get any special treatment, she is just one of the herd. She comes from a very good production family, with her dam and sisters also performing well in the herd. The only disappointing aspect is that she has only had bull calves.”

Commenting on the Patterson family’s success, Brian McCarron from Genus ABS stated:

“It is testimony to the high level of management and attention to detail on the farm that results such as this have been achieved.”

Brian went on to say that Moet Nansen was a very popular bull, marketed by Genus ABS several years ago and who sired robust, youthful cows who performed well on many farms.

With a herd average currently of over 9000 litres, butterfat of 4.2% and protein of 3.2 %, Ross has had an emphasis on the use of high fat and protein bulls, in addition to yields. However, other traits such as type and the health and fitness traits, including calving ease, fertility and longevity are also considered in the genetic mix.

Ross added: “We are using the Genetic Management System (GMS) run by Genus ABS, whereby the history of each animal is considered in conjunction with all of these traits.

“They are the only company that can go back seven years to check for in-breeding.

“The system produces a tailor made mating for each individual cow, thus helping us to improve all aspects of production. The information provided by this system is an excellent management tool. Its importance and relevance are even more meaningful in the present situation when milk prices have decreased so much.”

Current sires in use in the Loughgare herd include, Ponder, Classic, Ingenious and Levi and, in addition to keeping enough herd replacements, Ross has excess heifers and breeding bulls for sale and can be contacted on 077 2005 9841.