World Angus Forum 2017 chairman and Aberdeen-Angus Cattle Society 2017 president Alex Sanger runs a 180-cow pedigree herd across the family’s 700 acres, with the aim to increase to 200 cows in the near future, having been at that number in the past.
Farming with his wife, Wendy, and one full time employee the Rosemount herd doesn’t show and sells a limited number of bulls, preferring to steer most male calves and sell most of them as store cattle at either Stirling or Thainstone.
The Sangers do, however, sell a large number of females, having been involved in significant exports to Europe over the last decade, including having sold cattle to Estonia, Romania, Germany, Spain and France and semen having sold to Russia.
This largely commercially run herd was founded in 1995 with seven in-calf cows bought from the Fairoaks herd and has expanded since then with selective use of sires. The aim is to maintain a herd of fertile, low maintenance cows with plenty of milk and natural fleshing.
Heifers calve in to the herd at two years old, with the herd split in to two groups, a spring calving portion and an autumn calving group. Aiding herd management is the use of Heat Time collars for heat detection in heifers to be AI’d, with most of the cow herd put to stock bulls.
Current sires in use include Coul Lord Belvin M573, with this bull imported to the UK as embryos, Stouphill Prosper P089, Wedderlie BlackAmoor J835 and Haymount Eversmith P474, with the aim being to source complementary sires to add depth to the herd’s bloodlines.
Sales from the herd have included a top of 10,000gns for Rosemount Black Knight D464, a son of Blelack Prince Consort A286, while noted female sales include Rosemount Justine Erica B296 which sold to Whittaker Farms and subsequently breeding Haughton Justine Erica L012 which has been a successful show cow for the Denning family.
The family’s successful management and breeding was recognised in 2015 when they were runners up in the Scottish Beef Farm of the Year competition run by AgriScot, while Alex is active in the local farming community, being chairman of Angus Cereals a growers’ cooperative which handles more than 40,000t of grain a year from its 65 members.
Alex, Wendy and their children, Alexander, Anna and Lucy, are looking forward to welcoming international visitors to the farm in 2017 having themselves attended the World Forum in 1997 and subsequently the World Secretariat in Mexico and the European Angus Forum in Portugal and the Azores in 2016.