This is a busy day at MTREC. We’re receiving the second half of bulls for the Tennessee Bull Testing Program. The Senior Bulls arrived in late August, the Junior Bulls arrive today. It’s sure to be a busy day weighing bulls, recording hip heights, and making sure bulls arrive in the correct pens. Then after we’re all done with our work the bulls will get to work out their social rank with plenty of bellaring and snorting involved.

Purpose of the Bull Testing Station: (a)  To provide a standard, impartial post-weaning gain test that will furnish records which will be useful to the consignor in his breeding program; (b) To provide a source of and market for completely performance tested bulls; and (c) To serve as an educational tool to beef cattle improvement and promotion.

Producers can view record updates online as the test progresses – check how their bulls are gaining on test and how they rank among their peers. Then as the sales inch closer (Senior bulls in January, Juniors in March), things will be cleaned up and the bulls will be ready to go to new homes. Programs like this bull test help to return quality bull genetics to local producers. The bull is the largest impact on calf crop genetics, so investment in a quality bull is very important in a good cow-calf program.

Have you ever participated in or purchased bulls from a similar program? What are your likes and dislikes of this method of collecting performance data from young bulls?