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Working Ranck - June/July 2017

From the Braunvieh cattle brought along some valuable genetic traits BRINK FAMILY Alps to America Bob Brink fi rst noticed Braunvieh when he was in college and took a range management fi eld trip to the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (MARC) in Clay Center, Neb. “They were beautiful,” Bob Brink says. “I remember thinking that if they were to ever sell any as breeding stock, that I would be interested.” Bob and Marilyn Brink have a Braunvieh seedstock operation, Brink Livestock, in the Flint Hills near Piedmont, Kansas. In 1978, they found out MARC was selling surplus Braunvieh cows. “They were selling cheap, so I just took them all, maybe 20 cows. The next three years, I bought them every time they sold,” says Bob Brink. Those cattle were incorporated into his commercial Hereford herd and sold Bob on the merits of the breed. In 2000, he and Marilyn bought their fi rst registered entire herd is registered Braunvieh. The biggest attraction to the Braunvieh for the Brinks was the maternal factor. “They are terrifi c mommas, have very sound udders and plenty of groceries BY JAIME PULLMAN Braunvieh heifer, and now their The Braunvieh is a stand-alone breed that originated from the scenic Swiss mountains. for the calves,” says Marilyn Brink, who is on the Braunvieh Association of America (BAA) board. “For us, the Braunvieh infl uenced replacement female is the best advertisement for the breed. She’s extra fertile, good milking and a terrifi c momma. And she can work in a wide variety of environments. As a mountain cow originating in the Swiss Alps, the breed tolerates high elevation and cold climates. But they also are extremely heat tolerant and are sought after in the south. Braunvieh have fl ourished in Mexico, where they are a prominent breed.” Braunvieh are particularly respected for their ability to turn high milk production into marketable weight, according to MARC data, where Braunvieh crosses averaged 439 lbs at 200-day weight per cows exposed. Braunvieh-sired females were able to produce 5% greater weaning weight than Hereford-Angus crosses, and between 4% and 11% more than any 106 I WORKING RANCH I JUNE / JULY 2017


Working Ranck - June/July 2017
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