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Author Topic: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos  (Read 12613 times)

Offline zak

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Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« on: August 03, 2014, 01:44:55 PM »
Is there any ways that you guys use to tell if a calf is straight in their shoulder design and in their knee? Looking at 400-600 pound calves sometimes for me can be a little tricky to tell weather or not by 1300 if they will buck over. I have heard that a few things to look for is the neck to come out of the shoulder at a higher point(up headed). A banana shape to the front leg. The last thing i heard is the calfs front hoof shoulder float when it reaches out for its next step. In this case what is the cut off point to where it doesn't reach out far enough that at 1300 it will be to straight. Also is there any trick to finding the point of the shoulder on some calves? For some its very easy to find the point and others(that seem to carry more condition)it can be difficult.

1). is this one straighter made? I have a hard time finding the point of her shoulder
2). this one looks like she is straight. am i right on this one
3). This calf i can find point very easy and i believe this one would get to straight

Offline Olson Family Shorthorns

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2014, 02:04:43 PM »
This is a very important topic and one I believe is very hard to explain through pictures, but let's give it a shot. 

Think of the calf's shoulder as a right triangle or a figure 4.  Draw from the top of the shoulder, to the point of the shoulder, then back to directly under the point where you started. Then draw a line straight down to the ground. 

The steeper and taller your triangle is, the higher the chances are that your calf is too straight fronted.  And if the knee of the calf intersects or is in front of the downward arm, you probably have a straight fronted one. 

Sometimes it can be very challenging to tell this from pictures, due to the calves maybe not being in their most relaxed state, or due to some "creative" editing. 

Another thing to remember is that all things regarding structure work in conjunction.  If you see one that comes up in their top, and you've determined that it's due to them being too full, look for them to be uncomfortable on one or both of their front legs.  It's really a lot like an old school erector set.  If you move one point of a framework, all other points have to move to compensate for that movement.  If a piece is structurally unsound and doesn't fit right, the rest of structure will lose integrity.  As with buildings or any other structure, the closer to the ground this inefficiency begins, the more out of whack the rest of the structure becomes. 

I'm not sure if this helps at all or not.  Sometimes it's hard for me to get my thoughts out coherently  ??? , but if we both had the calves in front of us, I bet I could show you what I mean.
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Offline Mainevent

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2014, 02:06:26 PM »
I think the first one will be adequate, I don't think it will to big of an issue. The second one will be real straight and the third is working on it. Both of those last two calves are already up on their front feet starting to buck over.
If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over? - John Wooden

Offline Telos

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2014, 05:31:57 PM »
Super explanation OFS... The scapula and every other section is integrated to perform like an efficient shock absorber. When the overall design is too steep then the structure will be compromised. Bucking over at the knee socket is a classic example of incorrect angles through the shoulder.
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Offline DLD

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2014, 08:16:39 PM »
OFS explained it very well.  There are some other warning signs to look for as well.  If one appears to be tight hearted (just behind the shoulder and front legs) they will be more likely to get too straight.  And if you can watch them move in a video, look closely for any sign that the front feet/legs aren't tracking true - if they appear to be swinging their legs out (paddling) when they walk, that's a giveaway that there are structural issues.
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Offline zak

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2014, 08:33:05 PM »
A few more pics. What do you think of these 3 as far as what their future will be like. The smoke i have a hard time finding the point of the shoulder and the black steer i think is one that will have plenty of slope to get him to 1300. The third pic(black heifer) seems like she is going to get straight(am i right on that)
« Last Edit: August 03, 2014, 08:36:12 PM by zak »

Offline Olson Family Shorthorns

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2014, 09:24:02 PM »
I think you're on the right track. Look where each of those calves places their show side front foot.

First calf has his foot away from his body, suggesting that he is uncomfortable putting it squarely underneath himself. Indicitive of a structure issue.

Second calf sets his foot squarely and firmly underneath himself. Refer to your figure 4 and you'll see just how much set this calf has. He looks to be good to go.

Third calf is already beginning to be over at his knee- no brainer there.

Good job 
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Offline Mainevent

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2014, 09:44:03 PM »
I agree with OSF to a point. That smoke looks like it will be fine. I have to say that on that one you need to watch the video to get a good idea because unless the pic is obvious like the last black calf video is my Main decider. I'm sure OSF has been around just as many picture pens and my thing is I have helped picture calves where if the front feet aren't just right we may still use the pic if the calf still looks good, sometimes the just don't cooperate.
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Offline HelenH

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2014, 09:48:18 PM »
Of the six photos you have posted, at least five have had the frame angle tipped when cropped.  With the exception of perhaps the first photo; notice the horizon isn't straight and the white fence posts are on an angle.  This has been done to give the impression the animal has a level topline, since it is now level with the top of the page.  But changing the angle of the shot interferes with the shoulder lines that OFS speaks of above. 
An animal that is too straight in the shoulder will dip ahead of the shoulder ("Ewe neck") and the spine will rise behind the shoulder, dip in the loin and usually shows a high tail head. One of the judges at 2014 NWSS often mentioned, 'The higher the tail head, the weaker the loin'.
First photo:  This is the most original image given.  The shadow prevents you from finding the point of the shoulder.  The heifer is green and good.  Long clean frontend and long spine. 
« Last Edit: August 03, 2014, 11:45:53 PM by HelenH »
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Offline Tallcool1

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2014, 10:49:51 PM »
Of the six photos you have posted, at least five have had the frame angle tipped when cropped.  With the exception of perhaps the first photo; notice the horizon isn't straight and the white fence posts are on an angle.  This has been done to give the impression that the animal has a level topline, since it is now level with the top of the page.  But changing the angle of the shot interferes with the shoulder lines that OFS speaks of above. 
An animal that is too straight in the shoulder will dip ahead of the shoulder ("Ewe neck") and the spine will rise behind the shoulder, dip in the loin and usually shows a high tail head. One of the judges at 2014 NWSS often mentioned, 'The higher the tail head, the weaker the loin'.
First photo:  This is the most original image given.  The shadow prevents you from finding the point of the shoulder.  The heifer is green and good.  Long clean frontend and long spine.

zak, to answer your question directly, no. No there is not a way for me to tell based upon a picture.

Read Helen's post.  Her notes about "tipping" the photo is the first thing I noticed. By doing that, all of the angles are changed.

In addition, even if the photo doesn't get turned, but the front feet are 4" higher than the back feet...same deal.

Offline knabe

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2014, 05:33:23 AM »
I get it that it's a prospect perspective, but it's silly to constantly put the front end on pedestals for pictures as well as getting them going up hill, especially for terminal pics and full grown animals.

the constant effort to make the rear leg look like they have spastic paresis is a joke as well.

« Last Edit: August 04, 2014, 08:37:13 AM by knabe »
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Offline Tallcool1

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2014, 10:39:16 AM »
I get it that it's a prospect perspective, but it's silly to constantly put the front end on pedestals for pictures as well as getting them going up hill, especially for terminal pics and full grown animals.

the constant effort to make the rear leg look like they have spastic paresis is a joke as well.

I couldn't agree more.  It is even to the point now that all of the video is being shot while the calves are walking up a slight incline.  Not every sale is this way, but some are.  I always kind of chuckle when I see every single video clip  on a sale being the exact same runway.  They walk up a hill, past the round bale in the background...up past the front of the Ford pickup...then past the show trailer.  Then we get to see the exact same 4 seconds of video 3 times during the clip. 

Offline knabe

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2014, 07:36:31 PM »
The more the knees are bucked, the steeper the hill.

If they walk on flat ground, it's a lot easier to see faults.

I get it, but after 30-40 of snow cattle breeding, one would think there would be more sound cattle. Instead, even breeding stock angus at the California state fair buckle on their rear pasterns. A total disgrace. Other breeds are the same, it's not just angus.

Judges look at them on them on flat ground, everyone Shoukd, do really, to me, it's about fooling the buyer, again, sad.
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Offline -XBAR-

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2014, 08:22:12 PM »
I think is one that will have plenty of slope to get him to 1300.

What are you saying here?

Offline Mainevent

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Re: Ways to tell straight front end from pics and videos
« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2014, 08:37:59 PM »
I think what he's trying to say is that his shoulder appears that he will make it to 1300 pounds or a finished steer and still be sound.
If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over? - John Wooden

 

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