I can't stop checking out the PLANET!

Help Support Steer Planet:

justintime

Well-known member
Joined
May 26, 2007
Messages
4,346
Location
Saskatchewan Canada
Hi everyone!
I am on day 3 of my visit to Scotland. My ansectors left here in 1884 for North America, and I am now wondering why they did. What a beautiful place! Despite many health issues in recent years ( BSE,Foot and Mouth, Bluetongue, etc) the cattle business is flourishing. I am presently at the Royal Highland show in Edinburgh. Met a Maine breeder from Wyoming this morning that is a good friend with a good friend of mine in Alberta.... it really is a small world!!
Commercial cattlemen here really take good breeding stock seriously. A friend of mine here, sold all his yearling bulls at £4500 or $9000 US out of his yard. He said he would have gotten considerably more if he had held them until they were two years old. I think I would be happy with selling my bulls for a $9000 average out of my yard. Quite frankly, the bulls he sold at this price would be hard to sell at home... quite rangy and not near as well muscled as ours ( ie: all breeds in N America). I have seen several offspring from embryos I have sent over here. They look good even though they are not as tall as many of the cattle here. They show mature bulls here so there are some pretty impressive monsters in all breeds. Several Angus by US and Canadian sires that weigh in excess of 3000 lb. I am impressed with many of the Angus cattle I see here.

I was suffering from ''lackofplanetitis'' and finally found a computer at the... and I had to check out the Planet. Hope everyone is doing well and surviving the crazy weather many have been getting. Back home, we have started to get some rains... we are not out of teh woods yet but we are thankful for what we have received. The grass is at least growing now.
Just thought I would check in.....
 

red

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 20, 2007
Messages
7,850
Location
LaRue, Ohio
JIT, that sounds wonderful. My grandmother in her early nineties visited Scothland too. It was her biggest goal.

So glad you are well. Keep safe & come back to us!!

Red <party> (thumbsup) (angel)
 

stumpy

Well-known member
Joined
May 1, 2007
Messages
293
Location
Great Bend, KS
That sounds like an awsome trip. I would love to go to Scottland. Last summer I made the trip to Argentina for the Polarmo show and I will be leaving again on July 22. Now that there is a European post I will have to get a post sent from South America. Maybe someday there will be posts from the entire (steer)planet! JIT I am a little envios of you right now, cattle travels are an unmatched experience.
 

oakbar

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 20, 2008
Messages
1,458
Location
North Central Iowa
Hey JIT,

Sounds like a fabulous trip.  I always wanted to go to Norway with my parents while they were still alive.  We didn't get it done and I have to say that is one of the great regrets of my life.  I hope you have a blast and see a lot of great cattle while you are there.  I'm trying to get a trip planned to a foreign country too.  I'd love to travel up your way and see some of the awesome cattle in Canada.

Watch out for those Scottish beverages!!  I hear they can give you a Blue Tongue with a bad case of Foot In Mouth if you're not acclimated to them properly!!

Travel well and take lots of pictures!!

Oakbar
 

knabe

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 7, 2007
Messages
13,640
Location
Hollister, CA
justintime,

snag the two kinds of pint glasses while you are their for a souvineer.

go to the sam smith brewery in tadcaster.  they still deliver the beer with shires in town.  you can go on a tour and go all over, see a cooper making barrels in the shop etc.  of course it's not in scotland, but the country isn't much bigger than disneyland.

the street performers are great over there, better than just about anything.  try and hassle them for a better performance.

the cannon at edinburgh is pretty impressive, and so is the view.  they take their tourism a little more seriously over there.

one could order fresh fish for breakfast all over scotland.  i stayed at someones house and we had fresh fish delivered by truck every morning.  this was near inverness. 

be sure to stay out late at least once in a local pub late where the locals are.
 

justintime

Well-known member
Joined
May 26, 2007
Messages
4,346
Location
Saskatchewan Canada
I am now well into day four of my visit here. I am amazed at the prices of everything. Last night I was walking through one of the sheep tents ( there are thousands of sheep here and more breeds than I ever knew existed), I watched a small auction take place between two sheep breeders who were interested in the same ram lamb. The owner simply held a small auction between the two men and it sold for £30,000 or $60,000. I was told that a ram sold for £101,000 last year ... or just over $200,000 US!. I asked a sheep exhibitor what an average ram would sell for to a commercail sheep producer, and he said that a good average ram, would sell for £5000 to a commercial sheep producer ( again which is $10,000 US)

Everything here is expensive, in my terms. Gate admission into the Royal Highland grounds is £25 or $50 US. The place is packed with people. I have no idea who big this place is but it is huge. I have found at least 30 show rings so far. I have walked miles and still am told I have only seen a small part of the show. There are people everywhere! Last night I went to a small hotel to have my dinner. I was not really hungry so I ordered a small bowl of bacon and lentil soup, a small roll with butter, a small bowl of ice cream and a coffee ( I had had my fill of beer and whiskey by now). This rather small meal cost me £13.60 or approx $28.00 US. I have not heard one person complain about the costs of everything and there are line-ups everywhere. If this was at home, no one would be here to start with, and everyone would eat at home.... not so here.

The Scots do like their booze. I am amazed at the liquor around here. It is everywhere. Whiskey distillers have booths all over the grounds where they hand out free samples. There doesn't seem to be any liqour in public concerns as the Royal Highland show even rolls in a large bar (with every type of liquour you can think of ) into the cattle isles. Each breed has its own building as well, so the party moves there once the party in the barns is winding down. After travelling on these narrow, winding roads, I am amazed there are enough Scots left to keep the race alive, but I am told that accidents are very rare. That really surprises me as I have been on many roads that are only wide enough for one vehicle. If you meet another vehicle you stop, one then backs up until they find a patch of grass wide enough to get off the road, then the other passes... no road rage,.... just a friendly wave and off they go.

Agriculture is an important part of this country. This morning I picked up one of their national newspapers and was surprised that the agriculture section was bigger than all the other sections combined. This makes me very envious, as agriculture is almost a forgotten part of our economy where I come from. One of the displays that I found fascinating was the McDonalds display. ( the Golden aches McDonalds). This is a very large display with at least 20 well dressed attendants who talk to the public  about how McDonalds gets their food supply and how it is raised. One sign reads that all their eggs come from free range hens raised in the Scottish highlands. Another claims that all their beef comes from selected Scottish herds. They even have a live animal on display with the cuts they use for their burgers clearly marked on the animal with paint.  When I saw this display, I wondered if I would ever see a display like this in N. America. Quite frankly, I was very impressed with how these attendents were actually doing a very good job of '' educating the public'' about agricultural issues. I had to wonder, why they do it here and not back home????

I better get back to seeing the exhibits. I am amazed at some of the machinery they have over here. IT is much smaller than most in our countries, but it is very specialized. I hope to get back into teh country side this afternoon to see some more farms and herds.
 

justintime

Well-known member
Joined
May 26, 2007
Messages
4,346
Location
Saskatchewan Canada
I am surprised by the number of international visitors I am meeting here. Lots of US judging teams. I have run into groups from Iowa, Illinois and Maryland in the last couple of hours. Mostly dairy judging teans and FFA groups I think. There arealso lots here from New Zealand, S America and of course all over Europe. Today the crowd in crazy. There are thousands and thousands of people on the grounds. Far too m any for a prairie farm boy anyways. I am  super impressed with how this show focuses on food, where it comes from and how important agricture and food production is. Everywhere you go someone is promoting agriculture to the masses. I think we could all take some lessons from the Scots in this regard.
 

red

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 20, 2007
Messages
7,850
Location
LaRue, Ohio
JIT- what does the countryside look like? Do they raise many crops & if so what is the primary type? Also what is the feed ingredients used for beef cattle?

Red
 

Bawndoh

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 17, 2007
Messages
720
Great post JIT!!!  I think you are making us all envy the scotts quite well.  I also think you are doing a pretty good job of making us all want to go next year (thumbsup) (thumbsup) (lol).
Have fun, be safe. (angel)
 

knabe

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 7, 2007
Messages
13,640
Location
Hollister, CA
here's a good book that is a good quick read about the scots. (hint, red, read)

http://www.amazon.com/How-Scots-Invented-Modern-World/dp/0609606352

 

red

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 20, 2007
Messages
7,850
Location
LaRue, Ohio
Knabe, I looked at the first page on Amazon. Seems very interesting. I've read several books on Martin Luther & found it fascinating (I'm a Lutheran). I'll have to see if our library has it or add it to my next book order!

thanks
Red
 

cowz

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 10, 2007
Messages
1,492
Thank you for the great report from Scotland.  My ancestors were Scottish-- McCune or McEwan.  Had a great red tartan plaid!  I would love to see the modern culture and GREEN that Scotland has to offer!
 

garybob

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 4, 2007
Messages
1,634
Location
NW Arkansas
JIT,

You are very blessed to be able to make such a trip. Have you ever seen the "Whitebred" cattle, a distant cousin of Shorthorns? They look pretty interesting, as well as the Luings.

GB
 

stumpy

Well-known member
Joined
May 1, 2007
Messages
293
Location
Great Bend, KS
GB, are you talking about the "Wild white cattle of Chillingham,England"? That is an article in the Aug. 1967 edition of the Shorthorn World. It is a very interesting article if you have a place to find it. They have some stout horns but they look like survivors with stout heads and rugged looks. I don't know if any of these cattle are still in existence. If you find the magazine look at the cover bull TPS Coronet Unlimited x. I would love to have some amps on him. JIT, if you have a chance try really hard to kill one more pint for me, and breath in the history of the shorthorn breed, I am still sooo envious!
 

garybob

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 4, 2007
Messages
1,634
Location
NW Arkansas
stumpy said:
GB, are you talking about the "Wild white cattle of Chillingham,England"? That is an article in the Aug. 1967 edition of the Shorthorn World. It is a very interesting article if you have a place to find it. They have some stout horns but they look like survivors with stout heads and rugged looks. I don't know if any of these cattle are still in existence. If you find the magazine look at the cover bull TPS Coronet Unlimited x. I would love to have some amps on him. JIT, if you have a chance try really hard to kill one more pint for me, and breath in the history of the shorthorn breed, I am still sooo envious!
No, I'm talking about the Whitebred Shorthorn. A related, but, separate breed from Shorthorns. www.whitebredshorthorn.com, is their website. Check it out.

GB
 

justintime

Well-known member
Joined
May 26, 2007
Messages
4,346
Location
Saskatchewan Canada
I got home late last night from Scotland. I will post a few pics, from the trip, after I catch up on a little sleep. I was quite impressed with the country and it's cattle. Most of the commercial cow herds are made up of Belgian Blue cross females as well as other continental crosses. I saw some great females, and have to say that the best commercial cows I saw were the Blue crosses.... very very impressive cows with great udders and lots of milk. British breeds are having another serge in popularity as breeders are trying to get easier fleshing, low maintenance cattle, mostly created by higher feed and fertilizer prices. I certainly wish I could sell breeding stock for the prices they receive over there. More to come........
 

red

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 20, 2007
Messages
7,850
Location
LaRue, Ohio
so glad you made it back safely! How long was the flight?

Red  (clapping) (thumbsup)
 

justintime

Well-known member
Joined
May 26, 2007
Messages
4,346
Location
Saskatchewan Canada
The flight was 10.8 hours in total ( ie : actual air time)  ... 3 hours from here to Toronto, 6.5 from Toronto to London Heathrow, and 1.8 hours from London to Edinburgh. Attached are a couple pictures from Scotland. The first is a bull that is a herdsire in a herd over there, that was born from an embryo I sent over a few years ago. He is sired by Byland Sparkler and his dam is HC Secret Maid 18F( by CCS Marc Drive). This bull is leaving some excellent daughters.
 

Attachments

  • DSC00706.JPG
    DSC00706.JPG
    1.2 MB · Views: 296
Top