Summertime at Dora Lee

Haying is finished – driest we’ve ever had it, our last bull left for the US this week, calves are growing well and looking good and just a few keepers left in our bred heifer pasture.

Yes, times are great – although a good rain would be greatly appreciated. We are really looking forward to vacationing with all our family this summer. It should be lots of fun and make for some wonderful memories.2018 bred heifersDSC_1205                                           Our ladies on the move – 5 to a new home

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Full Blood Fleckieh genetics at their finest.

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By doraleepuppies

We are “living Our Dream”

Cows going to grassDSC_3919

 

Well, here it is May 25th. We turned our Fleckviehs out this morning. Our bred heifers are in their pasture, cows with heifer calves at side are out and our cows with bull calves are in a separate pasture.

Our herd sires are back in our bull facility with their work completed for this year.

It is now time for Betty and Ross to spend some time sitting on our veranda watching our Fleckviehs do what they do best.

Bull sales have gone really well – one of our youngsters is working in a purebred breeder’s herd in Alberta. Another one has been purchased by Select Sires in Wisconsin and their plans are to export his semen to Turkey. We have also had interest in 2018 bull calves for herd sire potential next year.

Betty and I really enjoy our life style here at Dora Lee. Farming was our decision back in 1973. It was our choice to raise a family here. We have had great satisfaction in the experiences our livestock have given us over the years.

Thank you for listening

By doraleepuppies

Polled Flechvieh – coming of age

Eclipse head shot

Back about 1987 Betty and I along with our son Dennis had a discussion on the pros and cons of introducing polled genetics into our Fleckvieh herd. The next question was just where do we start?

The general opinion in the industry at the time was that polled cattle had no butts in them and they also gave up average daily gain. But our customers were looking for polled bulls.

We have a position that when folks say you can not do something, we say, ” just watch us”. Now just where do we start? An imported polled bull Eisenhertz, would take the horns off if we could retain the butt and the gain of the cow in his offspring. So we started out by breeding one of our best cows, Frauline, to Eisenhertz and got a really nice polled heifer – Dora Lee Elexis . The next step was to breed her to Smithbilt Molson 21M to put more of the horned quality in the mix. We had seen Molson and were impressed with his quiet disposition and overall soundness.

Luck was on our side. Elexis presented us with a polled bull we called Eclipse. We were on our way towards our goal. Were we excited? Yes, big time! After we had collected semen on Eclipse, we sold him to our friend and neighbour David Lyons. Eclipse is now 13 years old and still going strong. We have sold his semen into several different countries.

In the fall of 2017, our son Dennis sold 2 heifers bred Eclipse, as high sellers in The Fleckvieh Equation sale in Alberta. We can proudly say Eclipse has made his mark big time in our breed – a proven calving ease bull.

Equinox at 1 year

His best known son, Equinox, is also out there making his mark and is homozygous polled.

After 40 plus years of breeding cattle, we have never stopped learning. Breeding quality cattle is our Passion, our way of life here at Dora Lee.

THANK YOU for listening

By doraleepuppies

2018 Herd Sire Prospects

 

We have these 2 young bulls available as Herd Sire prospects. They are both polled bulls, developed on limited grain and full fed hay ration.

Jackson DSC_0689

Dora Lee’s Jackson FF75E was born Feb. 5, 2017 at 84 pounds. Jackson is Sold

His sire is Dora Lee’s Phantom – an Anchor D Viper son out of Bar 5 Maria who we have used extensively in our herd with excellent results.

His mother is Dora Lee’s Janine – a very productive Canadian Sigfried daughter.

Sandy DSC_0681

 

Dora Lee Sandy FF36E was born Feb. 12,2017 at 96 pounds.

Sandy is also sired by Phantom and his mother is an Equinox daughter who has always brought in an excellent polled calf.

By doraleepuppies

It’s that Special Time of Year

The bull calves are fed - what's next Papa?

The bulls are fed, what is next, Papa?

It is time for us here at Dora Lee to take a look back as the year 2017 is coming to an end. Calving went well, we were sold out of herd sire prospects by March, our cows went to pasture mid May, things appeared to be going well.

However as haying season arrived we received 6 1/2 inches of rain over night. Our river fences were all washed out, we moved our herd onto higher ground and as it most often happens, 2 of our sons, Dennis & Ben were home and we spent most of a week just repairing and building new fences.

We are typical Canadians, it is too wet or too dry, too hot or cold. Canadians just love to talk about the weather. There would be a lot fewer conversations if for some reason we weren’t able to complain about our weather.

As in the past, it has been a very rewarding year. We sold bred heifers on both sides of the US/ Canadian border. We were able to purchase a polled heifer calf  with out cross genetics from Alberta.

We wish to take time to say Thank you, to the cattlemen who again helped make 2017 very special for us.

Lynn & Brian Vail – Ontario

Duane & Ellen Andrews – PA USA

Richard Bell  – Ontario

Rory Bell Scotland – UK

Liliana Valdez Briseno – Mexico

Betty and I have good health, a wonderful family and a way of life we really enjoy. We are really looking forward to traveling to Glencoe and spending Christmas with David, Ben and Sarah and our 6 grandchildren.

Seasons greeting to all.

Michael at ChristmasDSC_0873-1

By doraleepuppies

We do not Dwell on the Past, only Dream about the Future

Cattle with flag

 

We attempt to learn from our past, searching 364 days for the next female that will perhaps again raise the bar here at Dora Lee. Now for some future thoughts from this old cowboy.

We believe the future here is to continue developing  polled, Fleckvieh cattle and believe our herd in the near future will all be polled. We now have several homozygous, Fleckvieh females and the rest are polled. We dream about being able to continue to access those out cross Flechvieh genetics that will make their mark here in North America.

We are going to continue our work with genomics we started 8 years ago, with our focus mostly on feed efficiency, but also paying attention to all the other traits available to us. Are we there yet? No not yet. But that will not stop us for one minute as we continue are search to improve our Fleckvieh breed at every twist and turn. They says dreams do come true and it’s something I believe –

Fleckvieh genetics at their best.

Thanks for  listening.

Ross and Betty

By doraleepuppies

Fall is in the Air

 

Here it is mid September, a time of year this old cowboy looks forward to and really enjoys.

Our hay crop was somewhat of a challenge with plenty of rain, however on the positive side plenty of  grass in our pastures this year.

Our herd sire prospects are weaned and in our bull development facility. The balance  of our male calves are vaccinated and are leaving shortly for our long time feed lot customer, Marvin Brubaker.

A friend of mine [Pat Lynch] told me this several  years ago, there is no such a thing as two years turning out to be the same. Pat was right.

I really enjoy sitting out on our varanda these days, the leaves on our trees are starting to turn into several colours, watching the cows make their daily appearance for mineral etc.

Courtney & bull calf '17

We purchased Countney 22X in the fall of 2010 from Langer Simmentals while attending the Equation sale in Alberta. Courtney has had 6 impressive calves and her 2017 model is in our bull development facility. In my opinion Courtney is in the top 5 in our herd.

Betty and I have good health and family, we are enjoying life to the fullest. How could anyone in their right mind ask for more?

Thank you  for listening.

By doraleepuppies

It’s time to send our Fleckviehs to pasture

Cows going to grassDSC_3919

The fences have been up dated, just 2 calves to de- horn this year. Our Fleckviehs are patiently waiting at the gate, letting us know that it is time. Here it is May 20th already. Our winter is in the rear view mirror.

Platinum and Kawliga are back in our bull facility- breeding for this year in complete.

A fellow cattleman told me several years a go ” When your cattle go to grass for the summer, it’s like removing 40 lbs from your back”. Clair was correct.

Perhaps it is time for this old cow boy to put his feet up and spend some time sitting on our veranda. Or, be out on our Gator in the early morning watching the sun come up as our Fleckvieh cows do their thing. These girls are extremely proud of their 2017 models.

Is it time to start looking for that perfect Fleckvieh ? We haven’t found one yet. However that hasn’t stopped us from looking. Perhaps it may not hurt to dream once in a while .

Betty and I very much enjoy life here at Dora Lee. It is a way of life. We look forward to the changing of the seasons. We have had the joys of raising a family. We have health and family, what more would any one in the right mind ask for.

Yes it is time, many thanks for listening.

By doraleepuppies

Making Each Day Count

For 364 days per year we strive to increase our knowledge about our great Fleckvieh breed . (Every day except Christmas.) As the sale catalogues arrive in the mail almost daily, EPD’S are checked, the big one for this old cowboy is (MCE), maternal calving ease.

When we do get out to a sale of Fleckvieh cattle, udders are checked, feet and legs, & disposition. Do the females look like females? Do the males look like males? And of course, general over all appearance. Have we bred or laid our eyes on a perfect Fleckvieh bull or female? no, not yet. Breeding quality Fleckvieh is a challenge Betty and I really enjoy.

Breeding Fleckvieh cattle, is a way of life we chose here at Dora Lee. It is a spirit of adventure that shapes who we are.

Just waiting for spring - bulls DSC_9488

I really enjoy our life style here, working with our Fleckvieh cattle on a daily basis. Whether they are in the yard or out on pasture, we believe it is therapeutic, extremely relaxing and something this Old Cowboy enjoys very much.

Life is good is here. Betty and I have health and family. What more could anyone in their right mind possibly ask for?

Thanks for listening

 

 

By doraleepuppies

It’s a Wonderful Time of the Year

It is time to look in the rear view mirror and reflect on our year here at Dora Lee. There where  times this past summer we were wondering, would it ever rain?  Well, we are typical Canadians, it is either too hot or too cold, too dry or too wet. As in the past, at Dora Lee it has turned out to be a very good year.

Our crops have been harvested and stored for winter feeding. Cows and heifers and our herd sire prospects are in their winter facilities and calving season will start early January. Perhaps it is time for this old cowboy to put his feet up and enjoy the season.

It is also very important for us to thank our many customers for their going support. Visits here, your many e-mails and phone calls certainly mean a lot to us. We greatly appreciate your support – thank you to:

Lee McBride – Port Hope ON

Mike O’Bomsawin – Chelmsford ON

Laura Frank -Manitowaning ON

Carl MacDonald – Merigiomish NS

Claudia Giermindl – Knightville NB

Gordon & Lynne MacDonald  – Midland ON

Brian & Lynn Vail – Clarksburg ON

Rory Bell – Roxburgh Mill UK

Duane Andrews – Gillett PA

Dennis & Jeanne Small – Markerville AB

With the Christmas season upon us, it is time for family and friends. It is time to say ‘ thank you ‘ for our many blessings. Our son David, Sarah and our son Ben along with our 5 grand children Michael, Katherine, Joseph, Nathan, and Monica will be here to spend Christmas with their Mom and Dad.

family-16

May the joy of the Christmas season fill your home with happiness.

By doraleepuppies