Maximise Genetic Improvement with MateSel

The move of Herefords Australia Ltd onto the new ILR2 software means that a new product is now available to all Hereford BREEDPLAN members. Known as MateSel, the new product will enable you to objectively optimise the mating allocations for your herd and take your breeding program to the next level.

When utilising MateSel, you provide a MateSel Operator at BREEDPLAN with details regarding your breeding objective and breeding program, plus details of the bulls and females that are available for inclusion in the upcoming matings. The MateSel software then returns a detailed suggested mating list for your consideration, plus a report outlining a range of outcomes from the suggested matings such as the genetic gains that will be achieved and the level of inbreeding in the progeny. A flat fee of $165 (inc GST) applies to access a MateSel analysis for your herd, and results are returned promptly, usually within one working day. MateSel is only available to members of Breed Societies which are using ILR2 software and have at least one selection index.

Through optimised mating allocations, MateSel enables you to:
• Maximise the rate of genetic gain in your herd while managing inbreeding at the same time.
• Save significant time previously spent compiling mating lists.
• Make informed decisions about semen purchases, which bulls to use, animal selection or culling, mating group formation and mate allocations.
• Include objectivity and proven science in your mating decisions.
• Add significant value to your business by way of additional genetic gain and management of inbreeding to offset the cost of pedigree and performance recording.
Further information regarding MateSel and the benefits it offers are available from the following links

To learn more about MateSel, or to download the Excel template for submitting a list of candidate sires and dams,click here  or contact Andrew Byrne at SBTS on 02 6773 3357 or via email at Completed MateSel Excel templates can be emailed to

Nothing Beats Beef – ‘It’s how we keep warm’

Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) will launch the new winter beef campaign this Sunday, with the message that hearty-home cooked beef meals are the solution to keeping warm this winter.

Watch the TV commercial here

Using the slogan ‘Beef. It’s how we keep warm’, the campaign celebrates Australia’s favourite ways to rug up, using images of people wrapped in crocheted blankets, woollen scarves and fuzzy jumpers, while enjoying hearty beef meals.

MLA Consumer Marketing Manager, Andrew Cox, said consumers would connect with the campaign because they recognise the benefits of hearty beef meals in the cooler months.

“Winter sees a natural spike in beef sales because people love eating hearty meals like beef curry and casserole,” said Mr Cox.


Miniature Herefords in New Zealand

Originally printed in the NZHA magazine (reproduced here with permission)

Miniature Herefords were introduced to New Zealand, by Chris and Helen Russell of Esprit Stud.   They originally farmed regular size Herefords at Waimauku, north-west of Auckland, but became exasperated at the damage caused to paddocks by these bigger animals particularly in the wet, winter conditions.     In 1997 they discovered there were Miniature Herefords which had just arrived in Australia from the USA and it became a goal to establish this variety in New Zealand.   By the end of 1997 the first stock arrived along with embryos from Canada.   From 1997 to 2002 Chris and Helen imported embryos and semen from Miniature Herefords in Australia and Canada.   During that time their Esprit Stud moved to the Waikato.  Mrs  C.M. Beard of Tui Oaks Stud in Te Kuiti imported embryos in 2001 from which was born Tui Oaks Brandon Oak which is still on the NZ Hereford semen sire register today.   John Peterson of Akatea Stud in Pukekohe imported the last live stock in the form of six heifers from Australia in 2002.   In 2008 the Russells imported semen from two more American bulls, one of which was the first polled Miniature Hereford for New Zealand.   This was followed in 2012 with polled semen from another American Miniature Hereford bull imported by Janet Poole of Riverlets Stud in Northland.

Interest in these smaller and chunky Herefords has gradually spread throughout New Zealand with breeders appreciating the ability to run more animals per acreage along with the lessened damage to facilities and pasture.    They have the same good temperament and ease of handling as their larger counterparts and are a great way to help promote the participation of young people in cattle management.

Read the full article here with the included photos.



In 2011 a group of Miniature Hereford enthusiasts from Australia and New Zealand got together to set up a Virtual Cattle Show via the internet for Miniature Herefords.    As only a few breeders in the Southern Hemisphere are exhibiting at shows we thought this would be a good way for others to showcase their animals as well as promote the breeding of Miniature Herefords.   This is especially the case for those who live too far away from any show centres or have no means of getting to one.   The show is designed to be fun with no entry fees but we are aiming to have Certificates for placegetters and possibly sponsors who can donate prizes for placegetters in their particular country.

Except for three classes animals must be registered as Herefords with HAL, NZHA, AHA or any other overseas equivalent and be of a Frame Score 1 or less in order to qualify for entry.   For the breed classes if the animals are not halter trained then you will not be expected to try and groom them but they are preferred to be as clean as possible so it might pay to pick the times you photograph them.   The Judges will be professional people with experience in judging cattle, photography and the requirements of the competition.

The first show in 2011 had a pleasing number of entrants and this was doubled in 2012.   We hope to continue to build up each year and are happy to have feedback from interested people.

Show Schedules can be seen on the following websites:, and along with helpful hints for photography.   Official entry forms are included and, if necessary, further enquiries can be made to me (Janet Poole) via riverlets @

Click here for the show schedule

Click here for the entry form.