Checking out the competition

January 22, 2018

The Macadam family from Merrigum will be showing Ayrshires at this years International Dairy Week. From left, Samuel, Luke, James, Alison and Bill Macadam are pictured with their heifer, Long Gully Pretty Avie.

An Ayrshire from the Macadam herd.

The Macadams from Merrigum like to know how their Ayrshires are shaping up compared to other dairy cattle.

Bill Macadam has been breeding Ayrshires since about 1986 and appreciates them for their generally quiet temperament and moderate size.

Participating in International Dairy Week is an opportunity to see how his bloodlines are going in comparison to other cattle.

‘‘The idea for us is to benchmark where we are against others in the breed,’’ Mr Macadam said, while walking through his herd of about 200 on his 160ha farm.

‘‘While we finished second in the December BPIs (Balanced Performance Index) ranking with DataGene, there’s nothing like comparing them one-on-one.’’

Mr Macadam and his 15-year-old son Sam will take six head to dairy week, and Sam will be handling two in the youth show.

His brothers James and Luke will also be assisting during a busy week for the family.

Ayrshire cattle originated in Scotland and although they have traditionally been described with red and white markings, can now carry a range of colours.

A vice-president of Australian Ayrshires, Mr Macadam is now helping organise the 2020 world conference, to be held in Australia.

A visit to International Dairy Week will be included in the conference tour agenda.

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