The Scottish Beef Shorthorn Club was launched last October and with memberships flooding in-59 family, stockman and junior memberships, equating to over one hundred members - our first year has been a success.
Our first event was a barbeque at the Royal Highland Show for club members and exhibitors - 80 people attended and a good night was had by all, demonstrated by the fact that people were still buying drinks at the bar at 10.30, despite there being enough free stuff in kists in the cattle lines to float the Queen Mary!
In July we held a very successful visit to Quoiggs Beef Lot, courtesy of Highland Wagyu, Blackford to see their pedigree herds of Beef Shorthorn, Aberdeen Angus and Wagyu cattle as well as the interesting crossbreeding programme. Over one hundred and seventy members and friends enjoyed the hospitality of Mohsin and Martine Altajir, with Beef Shorthorn sausages in rolls on our arrival and a fabulous finger buffet later in the day.
Mohsin gave us a brief insight into his plans to expand the pedigree herds, which included the purchase of another Wagyu herd that very day. With the weather clearing, we were transported by tractor and trailer up into the Perthshire hills to view two separate fields of Beef Shorthorn cows: one group running with the successfully shown homebred bull, Quoiggs Extra Special and the other lot with Glenisla Drambuie 2nd. Most of the cows go back to Chapelton Landmark, a bull that had obviously left his mark on the herd. There were many good calves on show, sired by senior stock bull Chapelton Brogie and Glenisla Drambuie 2nd. Herd manager George McCulloch was kept busy answering questions and identifying the calves that had caught people’s eyes!
Many people took the opportunity to visit the Aberdeen Angus herd, which were grazing in fields on the opposite side of the A9. Back at the steading, there were some well-grown shorthorn yearling heifers running with a young bull, and a demonstration of pure and crossbred Wagyu steers and heifers. Mohsin has noticed significant differences in these calves: the pure calves with Shorthorn and Angus recipient mothers were bigger at birth than those born to Wagyu mothers and the Shorthorn cross Wagyu calves were outperforming the Angus crosses!
There were also some novelty competitions involving guessing the weight of Chapelton Brogie and the value of a pair of Wagyu stock bulls. Mohsin was keen to speak to those who had valued these bulls at over £50,000! The generosity of all resulted in over £500 being raised for the charity RSABI.
Vice chairman Catriona Gibb rounded off the day with a vote of thanks to Mohsin and Martine Altajir and all who had contributed to the visit, with special thanks to George, Maureen and John McCulloch for all of their efforts too.
The Club adopted the “Stars of the Future” calf show as its “National calf show” and there were over fifty calves entered for this event on 16th November at UA, Stirling. Danny Wyllie was the man in the middle who had eight strong classes to judge. There were two club “specials”: a points competition for the club member gaining most points in the open classes and a prize for the best pair from a club member: both of these were won by the Williamsons from Alvie Estate.
Our secretary, Claire Robinson, stepped down at the agm in October. We thank her for all of her efforts in setting up the club. Her successor is Maureen McCulloch.