Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

For the dairy folks and/or beef folks with questions about udders, milk and mastitis.
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Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by trin » Fri Nov 02, 2018 6:06 pm

I have 4 Brown Swiss nurse cows that I am looking to breed. I am wanting to try and breed an animal that is more grass base. And more hardy. And more fertile. I dnt need her to be a real milk wagon just enough milk to raise 3-4 calves. What would be the better cross Fleckvieh, milking shorthorn or Normande?



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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by cbcr » Fri Nov 02, 2018 9:57 pm

The Fleckvieh is a dual purpose breed. One of our members that bought a 150 cow dairy several years ago had Holsteins in the beginning. He had a lot of problems with the Holstein cows and within the first year he had replace every one of them. He needed cows that could hold up. He and his brother had a herd of beef cows that they had been breeding Fleckvieh for several years, so he went out to the pasture and picked out some of the cows that looked like they might be able to milk.

He said many of those cows in a dairy environment produced 25,000 - 30,000 lbs of milk. The Fleckvieh cows breed back easily, don't have health issues like other dairy breeds have and are very popular with grass based dairies, mainly because the can hold their body condition and still produce milk.

The Normande is also a good choice, as they are also a strength breed. They don't give as much milk as the Fleckvieh, but they are good animals as well.

The Milking Shorthorn has quite a bit of Holstein and Illawarra genetics in them that their is very little Milking Shorthorn genetics in the breed. They are good cattle, but for a grass based situation, the Fleckvieh should be first choice, Normande second choice then the Milking Shorthorn.

For more information on the Fleckvieh, visit our website http://www.dairycattleregistry.com we also have information on the Normande as well, you just have to go to the bull listing page and under the Normande bulls is a link to information about the Normande breed.

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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Son of Butch » Sat Nov 03, 2018 1:48 am

cbcr wrote:The Fleckvieh is a dual purpose breed. He and his brother had a herd of beef cows that they had been breeding
Fleckvieh for several years, so he went out to the pasture and picked out some of the cows that looked like they
might be able to milk.

He said many of those cows in a dairy environment produced 25,000 - 30,000 lbs of milk.

:bs:
3/4 Fleckvieh 1/4 beef cows.... 25-30,000 lbs lifetime maybe :)
Holsteins average 24,000
Brown Swiss 20,000
Jersey and Milking Shorthorn 16,000

Saying 3/4 Fleckvieh x beef cow can produce 25k - 30,000 lbs of milk is like saying Holsteins can produce 65,000 -
77,000 lbs of milk because a few of them have done it.

Fleckvieh are darn good cattle.... you don't have to tell lies or blow smoke to oversell 'em or promote them.

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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by cbcr » Sat Nov 03, 2018 8:36 am

These were purebred Fleckvieh that had been out in the beef herd. I have seen the DHIA records. He did pick the best cows that looked like they had potential to produce. He has a bull in AI that has daughters averaging over 27,000 lbs of milk. The Fleckvieh and Montbeliarde both can produce right with Holstein herdmates.

Many herds using Fleckvieh compared to Holstein is that with a pure Holstein herd they barely had enough replacement heifers to replace cows that left the herd. When they switched to Fleckvieh, they have ended up with more than enough replacements.

Some herds when ask to try Fleckvieh thinking they can't produce used the semen on problem breeders and lower producing cows. To their surprise when those heifers came into production they produced very well. Many in their first lactation don't set the barn on fire, but they are pretty consistent as to how they produce during the duration of that first lactation. Each lactation they get better and better! They last more lactations that a Holstein.

Yes the Fleckvieh are real good cattle. Even though they are dual purpose, there are some bulls that are used more for dairy production and then there are others that are promoted more for beef.

Either way you can't go wrong with Fleckvieh.

The Fleckvieh are from Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia. The Fleckvieh is part of the Simmental family, but they are different from the Simmental that come from the other countries.

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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Stocker Steve » Sat Nov 03, 2018 3:51 pm

Have seen some organic diary herds here using Fleck or Normande, but most use Jersey.

Why is Fleckvieh not more popular with conventional dairies?
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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Son of Butch » Sat Nov 03, 2018 4:04 pm

Lack of semen availability on PROVEN Fleckvieh Dairy Sires.
In addition U of Mn pushes 3 way cross using Holstein, Jersey, Swedish/Norwegian Red, Montbeliarde or Brown Swiss.
They endorse no matter which 3 way cross you choose for best results Holstein has to be one of them.

edit to add: Holsteins are "The Angus" of the dairy world. :banana:
Last edited by Son of Butch on Sat Nov 03, 2018 4:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Stocker Steve » Sat Nov 03, 2018 4:09 pm

Son of Butch wrote:Lack of semen availability on PROVEN Fleckvieh Dairy Sires.
In addition U of Mn pushes 3 way cross using Holstein, Jersey, Swedish/Norwegian Red, Montbeiarde or Brown Swiss.


Neighbor does Stein, SR, Montbeiarde. Ugly cows with docked tails. Some Limi semen would do them good. :nod:
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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by cbcr » Sat Nov 03, 2018 9:36 pm

There is plenty of semen on proven bulls. Big Bear Genetics out of Canada (distributes in US and Canada), Global Genetic Resources in Wisconsin, CRV in the US. The only thing that effect being able to have semen on some of the top bulls is that when they go thru a summer in Europe many end up with Schmallenbergers, and once they do, then they aren't able to export semen to the US. There are several high genomic young sire available.

Dairies would be wise to use the Fleckvieh and Montbeliarde but to many if it isn't a Holstein they don't consider any other animal to be a dairy cow. We have even heard of some that have Fleckvieh in their herd and they think they want to sell them.

Why? When ask if they produce well enough, they answer yes some of the Fleckvieh cross animals are some of their top producers. Ask if they have health problems, they answer no they have fewer health problems and stay healthier. Ask if they are having problems breeding back, they answer no, they breed back much better than the Holstein. When ask why they want to sell them, their reply is that they like the look of the Black and White Holstein better, no other reason.

Another problem is that bankers are so brain washed that they only want to loan money to diaries to buy Holsteins.

We have one member that has bred to purebreds and decided to phase out the Holsteins and become a full Fleckvieh herd. Their banker was not too keen on the idea at first but has changed his thinking, but they have became a full Fleckvieh herd. They are able to survive much better than most and have been able to build some new barns and other improvements. They have made the comment that if it were not for switching to Fleckvieh, they would have been out of the dairy business.

Their turnover rate has been as high as 43% and were barely able to have enough replacement heifers to replace cull cows. Today with the Fleckvieh herd it is below 15%. Cows last more lactations in the herd, and they have surplus heifers and are able to sell heifers from the farm to others.

The Fleckvieh is very popular with grazing and organic dairies because the Fleckvieh can hold their body condition quite well.

Another Fleckvieh breeder when grain went sky high ask his nutritionist to formulate a feed ration for 60 lbs of production. His nutritionist was curious too how well the Fleckvieh would perform. The herd is still out producing the 60 lbs they are being fed for. The nutritionist told him that if it were a herd of Holsteins he would have refused to change the ration as the Holsteins would not have been able to hold up.

We have a member in Iowa with a purebred Montbeliarde herd that is one of the top in the World. He has been able to have some of his purebred animals tested genomically in France and many of them rank in the top 10% for the breed.

The ProCross is a 3-way rotational cross of Holstein, Montbeliarde and the Viking Red (Swedish Red, Finnish Ayrshire and Red Dane). Their is a 10 year study that was conducted by the University of Minnesota and these crosses are more too are more profitable than the Holstein. They are more feed efficient by about 4% and this also includes young stock.

We have developed the North American Red which is a combination of US and Canadian Ayrshire, The Viking Red (Swedish Red, Finnish Ayrshire and Red Dane), the Norwegian Red and not over 12.5% Holstein. With the dairy evaluations the North American Red we have 73 of the top 100 cows on the Elite List. On the heifer list we have the number 1 heifer and she is higher that the second place animal that is from Sweden. the number 1 heifer completes 3 generations on the elite list, another animal in the top 10 completes 4 generations on the Elite list.

Have a member in the UK that has 2 bulls (polled) in the top 25 Ayrshire/Red Breeds list and he has exported semen to the US, Australia and other countries.

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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by cbcr » Sat Nov 03, 2018 9:45 pm

Son of Butch wrote:Lack of semen availability on PROVEN Fleckvieh Dairy Sires.
In addition U of Mn pushes 3 way cross using Holstein, Jersey, Swedish/Norwegian Red, Montbeliarde or Brown Swiss.
They endorse no matter which 3 way cross you choose for best results Holstein has to be one of them.

edit to add: Holsteins are "The Angus" of the dairy world.


The cross that was part of the 10 year study by the University of Minnesota was the ProCross which was a3-way rotational cross of Holstein, Montbeliarde and Viking Red. Others involved in the study were Creative Genetics of California (birthplace of the ProCross), Coopex Montbeliarde from France, Viking Genetiks and Select Sires.

Select Sires used to be a reseller for Creative Genetics but decided to start purchasing Montbeliarde semen from another source and ended their agreement with Creative Genetics. This change also meant that they no longer had access to the Viking Red semen. So not they are trying to push a Golden Cross which is a Holstein, Jersey and Montbeliarde 3-way rotational cross.

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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Nesikep » Sun Nov 04, 2018 1:08 am

Simmentals (and I'd guess fleckvieh as well) have been producing 20,000 lbs on mostly forage since the 1930s.

Looking through my cattle book from the mid 1930's most breeds were producing cows in that production range, the Holstein wasn't better at the time. There was a Brown Swiss in the US producing about 25,000 lbs at 4% fat too
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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Stocker Steve » Sun Nov 04, 2018 8:19 am

With all the DNA testing now - - there is a huge advantage to having a big breed population, to find sort for outstanding individuals. The less popular breeds will fall farther and farther behind in the numbers race. Both dairy and beef.

A few will claim the numbers lie and they breed for function. Not sure how this approach will hold up as DNA testing continues to improve.
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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Nesikep » Sun Nov 04, 2018 12:17 pm

Stocker Steve wrote:With all the DNA testing now - - there is a huge advantage to having a big breed population, to find sort for outstanding individuals. The less popular breeds will fall farther and farther behind in the numbers race. Both dairy and beef.

A few will claim the numbers lie and they breed for function. Not sure how this approach will hold up as DNA testing continues to improve.

DNA testing can't make better animals, it can only identify them.. small breeds may have traits that are better in some aspects, and with selective breeding and retesting I could see some other composite breeds come up
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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Son of Butch » Sun Nov 04, 2018 4:34 pm

trin wrote:I have 4 Brown Swiss nurse cows that I am looking to breed.
I am wanting to try and breed an animal that is more grass base. And more hardy. And more fertile.
I don't need her to be a real milk wagon just enough milk to raise 3-4 calves.
What would be the better cross Fleckvieh, milking shorthorn or Normande?

Back to the original question. Any of the 3 breeds would meet your needs.

I'd compare the individual bulls with semen available to you in your area and choose the sire I felt would produce a
shorter wider female (feed efficiency) with depth and width of chest (room for the heart improves blood circulation
and overall health) with a shallow tight udder for longevity.

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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by farmerjan » Sun Nov 04, 2018 9:12 pm

I like the montbeliarde crosses. The cattle flesh really well no matter what they are out of. I have crossed my jerseys with angus, a few simmentals, some aubrac, and will be using some limi semen I have this year on anything I do not want a dairy replacement heifer out of. Trying to get a few more percentage guernseys, as they were so close bred that they do not have the "staying" power. One of my dairies has used a fair amount of montb and said the cows were too fat, yet they milked well and had good butterfat and no health issues. The steer calves finished out good.... but there is no market for anything beef that is not black. So they make good personal beef or private sales.
Normande are also a pretty decent dairy cross.
I have no experience with Fleckvieh. I would not use shorthorn but mostly because again, there is no market for the calves.

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Re: Fleckvieh, shorthorn Or Normande

Post by Son of Butch » Mon Nov 05, 2018 1:35 pm

Sale barn sold 5 bred solid mouth Normande cows today... due in spring... 1410 lbs $685 hd = 48.5 cents lb

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