why I liked them so well is because of their moderate size, their good milk ing ability and their fertility,” Schlake adds. “The focus on the Braunvieh originally was on the maternal traits, yet their carcass traits are incredible; they’ll marble without the external fat that other breeds have.” While the Brinks also first bought their Braunvieh for their maternal

for their milking ability and meat pro duction. While many dual-purpose breeds tended to excel at one quality more than the other, Braunvieh have held a tradition of maintaining both maternal and carcass traits. “The key reason the cattle were imported by my father-in-law and BUILDING A FUTURE WHILE REMEMBERING OUR ROOTS Continued from page 8

traits, they began breeding for car cass value. They found they could improve the carcass side and the replacement heifer side at the same time. “They are a very pliable breed compared to my experiences with other breeds,” Bob says. “They’re very compliant, and they’ve done whatever we asked them to genetically.” For many years, the Brinks partici pated in the BAA’s steer feed-out at Decatur County Feed Yard in Oberlin, Kan. “We sent our entire steer calf crop out, trying to increase the accuracy of our EPDs,” Bob says. “Looking back, that was a good thing because it put a fairly large amount of our genetics in the EPD database, which made them more accurate for our own use.” Not only did this improve EPD accuracy, but they were also able to capture carcass quality data. The Brinks received summaries every quarter documenting how their cattle performed compared to all of the cattle fed at Decatur County – nearly 140,000 head – and were above aver age on almost all carcass traits. “There were a lot of high-quality cattle being fed, so that was kind of a watershed moment for us,” Bob

Kendall Schlake, pictured with his family, operates Rock Creek Braunvieh, Fairbury, Neb. Schlake’s father-in-law, Harlan Doeschot, imported the first original Swiss Braunvieh into the United States in 1983.


Braunvieh World  Winter 2023

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