Unique offering of 7-year old cows sets Vastrap apart

Unique offering of 7-year old cows sets Vastrap apart

The Vastrap Auction is distinguished by the fact that we offer for sale every single one of our own bred pregnant 7-year old cows. Each year these cows represent some of the best animals in the entire Vastrap herd and sometimes, the best in the country. This offers the buyer complete transparency and the opportunity to acquire an established herd matriarch in the prime of her productive life. We are excited to present the 2013 year group at the 2020 Vastrap Auction on Friday 21 August 2020.

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Over the past 8 years the Boran Society has consistently recognised Vastrap Boran as one of the best managed and best performing large herds in South Africa. This is significant, because it means that the value of our 7-year old cows is underpinned not only by their looks and genetics, but also by accurate performance values and progeny on the ground to showcase their quality.

Other breeders have often questioned how the Vastrap herd can survive the loss of the 7-year old group every year? The rationale is as follows. Because of our accurate measurement of performance, we are able to identify our best animals at an early age. These animals will be flushed once to ensure that we have more progeny on the ground by the time they are sold. Our cows have their first calf at 33-35 months so we get natural calves from them in years 3, 4, 5 and 6. Our philosophy is that a cow should breed progeny that are good enough to replace her within 4 years.

All of this underpins the value proposition for the buyer. The cows sold at the Vastrap Auction are offered under the auspices so they have been screened for conformation and are heavily pregnant or with calf. Within 3 and a bit years the buyer should have 4 calves on the ground from a top cow from one of the best herds in the country. All in all, the buyer reaps the  benefit of years of meticulous record keeping, research and top Vastrap genetics.

We are proud to be able to offer this unique opportunity to our clients. It has been heart-warming to see how many of the 7-year olds we have sold over the past 8 years have made their mark as herd matriarchs at their new homes. Here are some of the beauties that have gone under the hammer at past auctions.

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Blessed by the Boran

Blessed by the Boran

We had a fantastic time at the 2015 National Boran Auction last weekend that was held at the Afridome in Parys. It is always a real pleasure to catch up and socialise with our fellow breeders from around the country and to meet new people interested in the breed. The auction itself went very well. The top priced bull, Rupert LW 09-13, was sold for R230’000 to a Namibian breeder. Several females, both cows and heifers went for between R60’000 and R85’000 with average prices in the range of R35’000 (see Latest Auction Results). We were thrilled to purchase two great animals to join the Vastrap herd. A prospective stud sire, DVB 08-16, whose grandfather is 2738 and on the dam side has 494 and HVT 95-03 (R70’000). We also bought, JH 07-08, which has HVT 95-03 as her grandfather and KPO 791 on her dam side (R35’000).

The biggest surprise for us, was that Vastrap was awarded the Dave Green Memorial trophy for the best managed medium-sized Boran herd in South Africa! We really weren’t expecting any prizes, but it is fantastic to be acknowledged and to know that our work is paying dividends. The award not only celebrates the animals, but also gives credit for good administration and data capturing, which is one of the things we focus a lot of effort on.

The award is based on performance in a number of quantitative indicators. A third of the scoring is for data capturing (birth, weaning, 12 & 18 month weights) and the percentage of bulls that participate in phase D performance tests. Vastrap bulls account for a third of all Boran bulls in Studbook’s official performance tests each year. This data plays a very important role in our selection of bulls for the annual Vastrap Auction, which will be held on 14 August (see 2015 Vastrap Boran Auction).

The rest of the scoring is based on the size of the herd, inter-calving performance, age of first calf of herd and days since last calving. We have been very blessed to have exceptional fertility in our herd over the past year. There are many things one can do to improve performance in this area to achieve consistently good results, but a lot of it is also down to weather and grazing conditions. There is no doubt that we have been blessed and we are extremely grateful to have these wonderful animals in our daily lives.

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