Mark That Card: Angus Heifers

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Thank you Lake Land College Livestock Judging Team in Mattoon, Illinois, for providing the placings and officials.<p/>
Placings: 2-3-1-4 
Cuts: 3-2-6

I like the Angus heifers 2314. Although I could make a case for any of these in my top trio, 2 ultimately strikes me as an elite brood cow with a distinct look of quality. It’s easy to see that the heifer who appears the heaviest bred is the deepest, boldest ribbed female who is impressive from behind. But what makes her unique is with all of this power, she remains feminine in her head and neck shape and maintains her balance on a functional foundation. Now where my class winner could be altered, 3 corrects her. The ultra-fresh conditioned heifer is the cleanest chested, she’s laid in smoother at the point of her shoulder and sets down on the most attractive hind leg. Comparatively though, at this stage, I wish she offered a bit more sweep from mid rib to flank. And step in behind the cattle and it becomes evident that she’s the flattest of my initial trio.

Quality doesn’t drop off in my middle pair, and it only gets more challenging between two females who tradeoff in look and power. Personal preference leads me towards the added female character and structural advantages in 3. On the profile the more attractive fronted heifer is smoother blending and longer hipped. And yet when on the go, she remains looser jointed and more stable in her rear leg.  Now I can see it being argued that 1 is the more powerful option laying more spread over a deeper and more dimensional rib. Additionally, she’s better in her lower body balance. However for all of her topside mass, she gets frailer at the ground and comes in a coarser package, being more open in her shoulder, up in her tail head. Plus she’s a bit gathered in her teat placement.

None the less, there is a clear divide in utility and function that keeps 1 off the bottom. Simply, the wider built, better bodied female should not only require fewer inputs post-calving, but I’d bet on her more useful build to withstand more years in the pasture. I know 4 is laid down smoother over her tail head and I appreciate her added freshness and refinement. But for me, she takes these traits a little too far in a powerful set of breds like this. The shallower jawed, harder bodied heifer is the flattest made and perhaps most concerning is the straightest in her angles and the most restricted off both ends.

Thank you.

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