Thistle Hill Farm – Blog

…doing what comes naturally

Category: Champson

The waiting game…

…seems to be a subtitle for much of the year at Thistle Hill.  Right now we’ve confirmed the pregnancy of the cows we artificially inseminated(AI). A2a is one of the AI recipients.  She’s one of two carrying calves by Grantland Granite of John Forelle’s Folly Farm.  That herd was dispersed several years ago. Grantland was […]

Two young bulls…

…pictured at just over a year old…that we held back to monitor development. H242 (nearer the camera) and H243 were chosen to grow out here at Thistle Hill…selected from a class of about a dozen bulls. H242 in the foreground doing  well in the early stages.  We’re particularly pleased with his heart girth.  He and […]

Our bulls…

…have become an increasingly important part of our operation…not only joining herds from Canada to Louisiana but as leased sires to smaller farms that can’t justify a full-time bull. Right now we have eight bulls at work for Thistle Hill…and a dozen more in the development stage.  Our bull pen is still headed by Highwayman, […]

A lucky stroke…

By grandson Church who bred this two-month old heifer.  The semen tested poorly but we liked the son Church produced last year so we tried again. She’s the daughter of Defender, the most recent star of the famous Champson herd.  Her brother will have the chance to breed for the first time this year. We […]

Home again…

…are three yearling bulls who were at summer camp…actually the pasture owned by neighbors, the Rowland’s. Truthfully I’m not sure which is which….but these are sons of some great English herd genetics such as Champson, Essington Park and Ashott Barton. We take our young cows away for the summer to ease the pressure on our […]

The future…

…is in good hands!  Two yearling bulls we have high hopes for. In the background is one of the first calves from our herd bull Essington.  He’s from a premier English herd that was the work for many decades of Brian Drake…a herd that now sadly belongs to history. In the foreground is the first […]

Closing the circle…

Bribery is her name and we spotted her grand dam on our first visit to Ashott Barton farm in England 10 years ago.  The breeder, Shiamala Comer, didn’t want to submit her best cow to the rigors of flushing. Fast forward 5 years and on our last trip to England , Wooz and Church convinced […]

It’s been almost a year…

…since the birth of what we hope will be another line of pure, traditional English Devon at Thistle Hill. H364 was sired by Champson Defender via AI ten months ago and is now ready to be weaned.  He was an early success story for Church, who is now waiting for Defender #2 to calve in […]

The family that works cattle together…

…well gets dirty together if nothing else.  Pregnancy checking is a kind of tense moment in the year.  Not only do you hope for a high rate of pregnancy…but for matings you’ve invested in embryo transplants and artificial insemination. This year we’re checking a total of 32 cows…a mix of regular Devon plus our pure […]