THE prominence of Leucaena fed cattle among the champion grassfed pens was a notable trend from the commercial cattle championships held in conjunction with Beef 2018 in Rockhampton earlier this month.
The championships featured a yarding of more than 2000 market-ready cattle drawn from a large footprint of Queensland, with honours quite widely distributed across a variety of breed types, with Droughtmaster, Charbray, Santa Gertudis and Brangus entries in particular faring well.
One of the stronger trends from this year’s results was the success of Leucaena-fed cattle in the crop/pasture fed section.
The champion pens of grass-fed steers and females were both from Leucaena and buffel grass production systems.
The champion male crop/pasture fed pen was awarded to a pen of 10 two and four tooth Santa Gertrudis steers weighing an average of 747.5kg liveweight, bred and exhibited by Adam and Brett Hatton from Santahat Santa Gertrudis Stud at Monto.
The Hattons run a stud and commercial herd of 6000 Santa Gertrudis breeders, and turn most of their commercial production off to Coles supermarkets.
Brett Hatton said the family has been using Leucaena in its production system since buying a scrub block with the forage legume established about 12 years ago.
“It just keeps them going along, it gives them a bit of greenery and a kick along,” Brett said.
“It is the difference between having them fat and not quite fat, it is like giving them a biscuit of hay all the time.”
The champion female crop/pasture fed pen award was taken out by a pen of 10 two tooth Charbray heifers weighing 643kg liveweight on average, bred and exhibited by Chas and Judy Nobbs of the Cordelia Charbray Stud west of Moura.
The Nobbs’ also exhibited the reserve champion pen of grass-fed steers, and won three of the 12 classes.
All of their entries were two tooth Charbray cattle, fattened on Leucaena and buffel grass.
The Nobbs operation is geared towards breeding and fattening cattle for sale by 2.5 years of age, mainly to Teys for the MSA grass-fed market.
They first began using Leucaena 20 years ago and now have about 5000 acres established across four properties, which comprise mainly brigalow softwood country improved to buffel.
“It means we can finish cattle probably three months earlier than before we had Leucaena, and sometimes six months earlier,” Mr Nobbs said.
Grand Champion Pen: KD and KL McKenzie Droughtmaster/Simmental Cross, 10 x milk tooth heifers, 561.5kg
Champion Male Grainfed Pen: Banana Station Red Brahman, 10 x 2 tooth, 720kg
Reserve Champion Male Grainfed Pen: KD and KL McKenzie Droughtmaster, 10 x milk tooth, 567kg
Champion Female Grainfed Pen: KD and KL McKenzie Droughtmaster/Simmental Cross, 10 x milk tooth heifers, 561.5kg
Reserve Champion Female Grainfed Pen: Cantaur Park Pty Ltd Droughtmaster/Charolais cross, 12 x milk tooth heifers, 474.2kg
Champion Male Grassfed Pen: Santahat Santa Gertrudis Stud Santa Gertrudis, 5 x 2 tooth steers, 5 x 4 tooth steers; 747.5kg
Reserve Champion Male Grassfed Pen: Chas and Judy Nobbs Charbray, 10 x 2 tooth steers, 704kg
Champion Female Grassfed Pen: Chas and Judy Nobbs Charbray, 1 x milk tooth, 9 x 2 tooth heifers; 643kg
Reserve Champion Female Grassfed Pen: CA Mylrea Droughtmaster, 1 x milk tooth, 11 x 2 tooth heifers, 495kg
Most Successful Exhibitor: KD and KL McKenzie
Best Lot Feeder: Duaringa Station
1st Place Banana Station, Brahman Limousin cross, 599.5kg
2nd Place Tony and Sandy Smith, Simmental cross, 603kg
3rd Place KD and KL McKenzie, Droughtmaster, 617.5kg
4th Place Duncan and Karen Geddes, Brangus, 597.5kg
5th Place Boombah Cattle Company, Brangus, 597kg
1st Place Banana Station, Red Brahman, 720kg
2nd Place Atkinson and Co, Droughtmaster, 718.5kg
3rd Place Brigodoon Cattle Company Pty Ltd, Santa Gertrudis, 743kg
4th Place Banana Station, Red Brahman, 698kg
5th Place Codrilla Pastoral Company, Romagnola/Brahman cross, 688kg
1st Place KD and KL McKenzie, Droughtmaster, 567kg
2nd Place KD and KL McKenzie, Droughtmaster, 546kg
3rd Place Yulgilbar Pastoral Company Pty Ltd, Santa Gertrudis, 556kg
4th Place Duaringa Station Grazing Company, Droughtmaster, 544kg
5th Place Coorumburra Rural Enterprises, Brangus, 545kg
1st Place Duaringa Station, Droughtmaster, 459.5kg
2nd Place Angus Pastoral Company, Angus/Belmont Red cross, 476kg
3rd Place Santahat Santa Gertrudis Stud, Santa Gertrudis, 498kg
4th Place Coorumburra Rural Enterprises, Brangus, 477.5kg
5th Place Angus Pastoral Company, Angus/Belmont Red cross, 470.5lg
1st Place KD and KL McKenzie, Droughtmaster/Simmental Cross, 561.5kg
2nd Place Cantaur Park Pty Ltd, Droughtmaster/Charolais, 603kg
3rd Place Alan Atkinson Inv Pty Ltd T/A Mungalla Stud, Droughtmaster, 517kg
4th Place Duaringa Station Grazing Company, Droughtmaster/Charbray cross, 526kg
5th Place Banana Station, Brahman/Angus cross, 585kg
1st Place Cantaur Park Pty Ltd, Droughtmaster/Charolais cross, 474.2kg
2nd Place Randall and Tanya Ziesemer, Charbray, 490.4kg
3rd Place Alan Atkinson Inv Pty Ltd T/A Mungalla Stud, Droughtmaster, 442.1kg
4th Place Mark Collins, Charbray, 445.8kg
1st Place Chas and Judy Nobbs, Charbray, 619kg
2nd Place Christmas Creek Cattle Company, Droughtmaster, 621kg
3rd Place Andrew Rea and Sons, Droughtmaster, 593.5kg
4th Place Duncan and Karen Geddes, Droughtmaster, 607kg
5th Place Essex Grazing Company, Charbray, 592kg
1st Place Chas and Judy Nobbs, Charbray, 704kg
2nd Place CA Mylrea, Droughtmaster, 710.5kg
3rd Place Yandaburra Cattle Company, Charbray, 711kg
4th Place CA Mylrea, Drougtmaster, 652kg
5th Place Yandaburra Cattle Company, Brangus, 753.5kg
1st Place Santahat Santa Gertrudis Stud, Santa Gertrudis, 747.5kg
2nd Place Essex Grazing Company, Charbray, 662kg
3rd Place Chas and Judy Nobbs, Charbray, 668kg
4th Place Boombah Cattle Company, Brangus, 677kg,
5th Place KD and KL McKenzie, Droughtmaster, 629kg
1st Place Duncan and Karen Geddes, Brangus, 548.4kg
2nd Place Nogoa Pastoral Pty Ltd, Angus/Charbray cross, 549kg
3rd Place Boogal Cattle Company, Brahman, 554kg
4th Place Murray Loretta Smith, Santa Gertrudis/Angus cross, 546kg
1st Place Chas and Judy Nobbs, Charbray, 643kg
2nd Place Chas and Judy Nobbs, Charbray, 575kg
3rd Place CA Mylrea, Droughtmaster, 560kg
4th Place Santahat Santa Gertrudis Stud, Santa Gertrudis, 546kg
5th Place KD and KL McKenzie, Droughtmaster, 556kg
1st Place CA Mylrea, Droughtmaster, 495kg
2nd Place Coorumburra Pastoral Company, Santa Gertrudis, 479.6kg
3rd Place Cantaur Park Pty Ltd, Droughtmaster, 505.8kg
4th Place Presho Cattle Co, Santa Gertrudis/Angus cross, 466.3kg
5th Place Santahat Santa Gertrudis Stud, Santa Gertrudis, 474.6kg