WIU Bull Test Program Accepting Entries thru Aug. 31
July 19, 2013
MACOMB, IL -- Entries are now being accepted for the 42nd Annual Western Illinois University School of Agriculture's Bull Test Program. According to Samantha Cunningham, assistant professor in the School of Ag, entries for the 112-day test are open to any breed and are due by Saturday, Aug. 31; however, Cunningham noted, bulls must be weaned and started on a preconditioning program no later than August 17.
"The WIU Bull Test Program offers breeders the opportunity to compare their bulls against bulls from other breeders when fed and managed in the same environment," explained Cunningham. "Our last five sales have posted record averages and totals. More than 70 percent of the bulls sell to repeat buyers, which is a testament to the program's success and the buyers' satisfaction. We've also worked hard at controlling costs in these difficult times and hope to improve on this, as well," she added.
The WIU Bull Test Program evaluates the performance of bulls in a common environment and provides information on scrotal circumference, pelvic area, rib eye area, fat depth and marbling. The bulls are also indexed, so the breeder gets a substantial amount of information in a situation that provides an unbiased comparison.
"We've made some changes in the testing program, and we hope that breeders, old and new, will find the test to be an invaluable part of their performance programs. In addition to the test program, bulls will have ultrasound data gathered to be included in their breed's EPD program."
At the conclusion of the test, a sale of the top bulls will be held March 14, 2014.
"The sale offers proven genetics to the industry," Cunningham said. "The days of having cattle just for fun are gone. Today's cattle producer is extremely conscious of the bottom line, and proven performance bulls that have been properly developed can make that bottom line appear a lot brighter."
For more information about entering bulls in the program, contact Cunningham at (309) 298-1288 or (979) 220-5681 or the WIU School of Agriculture office at (309) 298-1080. More information is also available at www.wiu.edu/bulltest.