The Diamond H Braunvieh Breeding Program

The Diamond H has a two prong breeding strategy. The majority of our herd is registered. We have a portion of the herd that remains full blood.  We use them for both full blood and purebred matings.  We AI most every female every year, to bring in the finest genetics available, then turn out the females to the bull we believe will help us reach our goal the quickest.  Our main focus is the production of purebred seed stock that will assist the astute commercial cattleman to increase his profit margin per head.  The emphasis on the Diamond H is polled, black, and calving ease in a package that will perform in all aspects of the beef business.

Braunvieh Heifer Development

Prior to the third year of the drought, we did not feed animals other than protein supplement and heifers headed to the show ring.  We believe cattle should perform under the same conditions they will on any ranch.  Feeders are not usually in that mix.  However, the drought caused us to do some things we had not done prior.  One of those things is putting our developing heifers on a feeder.  Since we breed at 12 months, we need to give the heifers every opportunity to succeed.  Prior to the drought (and in February 2017 we are still feeling the effects of drought that started in 2011),  they had to do that on their own.  However, it became clear that our our pastures could not deliver the nutrition needed to get these females ready to breed at that age.  So beginning with Fall 2012 heifers, we put them on a feeder using a 14% grower ration from weaning until breeding.  Using salt as a limiter and closing the feeder doors, our goals is a 15 pound day consumption.  The results have been very good.  Still, we look forward to the day we don’t have to use the feeder….God willing!

The Diamond H Braunvieh Cow

We have historically had a fall calving program and in 2010 began a spring program as well.  Our cattle are required to breed in a 60 day window and wean a calf at 50% of her weight. Cows that consistently have bulls that are in the bottom of their test groups are culled. Females that are not “easy fleshing” are culled.    Cattle are also selected based on temperament.  Cattle that are culled from our program are sold as such.  If it is a birthweight or attitude issue, they go to the packing plant.  We don’t sell our problems!  Remember if you buy one of those females….they did not make our program, but they will perform very well for the vast majority of cattle producers in the country.  If you buy an animal that is good enough to stay in our program, you will know that by the price.
The result of all this is that we are advancing our program goals of producing fertile cattle that will  1). put a live calf on the ground every 365 days  2). grow that calf to wean at least 50% of the dam’s body weight, and will continue to grow at a rate of 2.5 pounds per day or better  3).  grow efficiently with offspring converting feed at a  target rate of 6 to 1 or better.  We work to raise bulls that that will pass these traits to the herds that buy them.