Thistle Hill Farm – Blog

…doing what comes naturally

Category: Breeding

Introducing TDA 35….

It was 10 years ago that I walked out in a pasture Cornwall, England with a grizzled old farmer named Ivan Rowe.  Ivan was introducing me to the best herd of cows I had ever seen! More than that he was offering me my pick to breed…flush the embryos…and ship back to the States. It […]

The next generation…

…and a picture of the result of mating our oldest American cow with a young British bull. The dam is 17 years old and still producing. But Church has decided it’s time to work in her replacement. This 16-month old heifer will be filling some mighty big hooves. Mom produced a string of outstanding bull […]

A lovely young maiden at Cathy Cochran’s Oak Hill Farm.

She’s just two days old but seems older. Her sire is Thistle Hill’s King David. He spent the last breeding season at Oak Hill and contributed new genetics to Cathy’s award winning herd. Meanwhile King David is back home awaiting his next assignment. David

Lest we forget…

…another pure English heifer…half sister to the two below…Ashott-Barton Tulip is the mother…and a line that stretches back as far as there have been Devon record books. The origination was in the famed Champson herd. The sire is Cutcombe Jaunty. Our current plan for Tulip is to let her calve at 3 and then decide […]

Bribery update…

A few years ago, on an introductory trip to meet our partners in England, Church was given a wonderful gift by his grandmother: the right to select any heifer he wanted from the Ashott-Barton herd. The young cow he selected—-without any prompting from me—was from the Bribery line which I had long coveted. Because of […]

Surprise…

The oldest cow in our herd at 16, M180, greeted us with a bull calf. Baby is an 82 pound bull calf by an English bull, TDA Highwayman. M180 was purchased from Lakota ranch years ago and has produced a string of nice calves. She preg checked open and gave no sign she was expecting. […]

English update….

The bull calf on the left is out of a Tulip dam, a line that goes back as far as there have been herd books in Britain…about 170 years. He’s definitely a “comer”; love his head and muzzle! The heifer on the right is out of Bribery. Church spotted her dam on his first trip […]

Lord of the manor…

TDA Churchill was the first bull we developed in our pure English Devon project and we now have about a dozen of his progeny in our herd. Churchill’s dam was the best Devon cow we ever saw.  She was national grand champion three years running until her breeder, Gavin Hunter of Tilbrook  Grange, took pity […]

Looking for volunteers….

….and here they are from the main herd. A big week at Thistle Hill as we implant embryos from the two heifers we purchased in England.  There are four more waiting in another pasture….young cows who’ve had just one or two calves. Again, we’re congratulating ourselves for choosing Red Devon some years ago….they are calm and […]

Thistle Hill Alumni Club….

…..Q48…was our first female when we switched to Devon in 2002.  We made the short trip down to Madison, VA  recently and Rich and Linda Maurer’s Springhaven farm, where 48 is still producing outstanding calves at 13 years of age.   Actually, we have double reason to be proud.  The Maurers brought 48 back home to […]