80" Bulls - Using Data to Succeed

DCC Ranch eNews #101, 4-13-17

by Darol Dickinson

The grass is green, pretty and not so pretty calves are running everywhere. It is a good time to reflect and evaluate, what is up front, what important data can we learn for the sire selections and first calves of spring. How can we be better in 2018? What AI sires will be the most profitable with real data??

In the Texas Longhorn industry the www.arrowheadcattlecompany.com site is filled with good info.

Craig Perez

Craig Perez, the tireless data collector who has brought horns to the front of Texas Longhorn values. Thank you Craig for your years of calculations on www.arrowheadcattlecompany.com. The data from this draft is 100% from the Perez site.

Anyone can take a $3 Chinese calculator and come up with some serious data, thanks to Craig Perez's untiring years of gathering numbers. If numbers are fun for you, ride along - it could be very profitable, the results will be interesting.

If all the Texas Longhorns are tossed in the calculator, with this huge sampling, cows average 18% more tip to tip than bulls, and steers average 56% over bulls. Therefore, bulls with great data are much harder to breed and raise, so great bulls should be far more valuable than great cows. Impressive horned cows are much easier to raise than bulls - just look at the numbers. Steers are a walk-in-the-park. Steers really blow up over the 90" mark quick when the right horn bloodlines are used. Perhaps while the bulls are working their hearts out, the cows and steers show them to be sub-standard by their smaller appendages.

This element of calculation will deal with all the sires of bulls on Arrowhead that are 80" T2T and over. Hopefully this data will help identify consistent bloodlines, trusted sires and help create solid business models for the serious producer. Obviously, this only includes sires of over 80" sons, which does not take into consideration important value colors, great female progeny, show correctness or beef-gain profit factors.

According to Arrowhead, there are 90 bulls that are documented at 80" or more in the Texas Longhorn industry.

There are 50 different sires of these 90 bulls.

There are 35 of the 90 bulls who have a total lifetime achievement of siring (1) one over 80" son.

Not on the Arrowhead data are over 100,000 bulls who never sired a single son who made the Arrowhead top 90 list. As we now analyze the few over 80" sons, that leading sires have sired, remember the 100,000 who didn't sire even one.

There are 5 bulls who have a lifetime siring success of 2 over 80" sons. Coming on up the ladder they are Maximus ST, Bandera Chex, Temptations The Ace, 703 RHF Sharp Shooter, and Concealed Weapon.

While many have read the Face Book accounts, the strong worded ads, and thought some bulls have sired 10 or 20 over 80" sons -- 'tis not so. And, don't forget, over 100,000 bulls have still not sired a single over 80" son. The 80" mark will continue to be very big and a hard goal to reach. Every inch beyond 80 is an even harder fight upward.

Part of calculation is to determine how many calf crops does it take to sire each over 80" son. Some bulls have bred hundreds of cows in a long lifetime, including AI, and embryo progeny, which would easily help them to rack up the most over 80" sons. As a result of this longevity-skewing of data we will now use this formula (lifetime breeding years, minus 5 years for younger generations who can not measure competitively, then divide the remaining sons per year that are over 80" -- same formula for all bulls with 3 or more over 80" sons.)

Per Year
Over 80"
Sire Breeding
Total Number of
over 80" Sons
1.5 sons Clear Win 2 3
.875 sons Top Caliber 8 7
.81 sons JP Rio Grande 11 9
.60 sons Cowboy Chex 5 3
.58 sons Hunts Com. Respect 12 7
.50 sons KC Just Respect 6 3
.50 sons Sittin' Bull 6 3
.50 sons Tempter 6 3
.44 sons WS Jamakizm 9 4
.23 sons J.R Grand Slam 13 3

Although many talk about consistent sires of top values this may not appear very consistent when most of the famous sires are needing around 100 or more calves for each over 80" son. If one ignores using the genetics of these breed leading sires, it will reduce their herd consistency even more.

Hopefully this complicated exercise in data will be helpful -- also profitable. Those who want to make a giant step forward use data. Data is a moving target, but still data is data. Go forward and win with it.