Western South Dakota's Only Ranch Station

Hereford producers recognized, new officers elected

KANSAS CITY, MO – The American Hereford Association held their 2023 annual meeting here over the weekend. They announced national winners of several awards and elected the new officer team that will help drive the association forward.

Wyatt Agar, Thermopolis, Wyo., was announced as the new president of the American Hereford Association (AHA) during the Annual Membership Meeting.

Raised on a multigenerational operation based in eastern Oregon, Agar serves as a manager and a partner in Durbin Creek Ranch, Thermopolis, Wyo., and Washakie Feeders, Worland, Wyo. The seedstock division runs 500 head of females and uses AI and embryo transfer (ET) technologies. At weaning, half of the heifers are retained for the cow herd while the other half are marketed as bred females. Bulls are sold as 2-year-olds in a February production sale, which also includes baldy replacement females and ranch geldings. Calves that do not make the bull pen are fed and used to collect data on the sire groups.

The commercial division runs 1,200 Angus and Red Angus cows that are exposed to Hereford bulls to produce F1 calves. The program collects data from birth to harvest on sires used in the seedstock division. At weaning females are sold in the February production sale. Light steers go to the operation’s stocker program in Oregon, and heavy steers are backgrounded at Washakie Feeders along with 5,000 to 6,000 of the ranch’s bull customers’ calves. These steers are fed to 900 pounds and then finished in Colorado.

Agar and his brother grew up on the family’s cow-calf and stocker operation in Oregon, which they later expanded to include the Wyoming divisions. Agar and his wife, Joey, strive to raise their children, Rylee, Taylor and Cooper, in the same manner — working side-by-side with family to produce high-quality beef cattle off the land and backed by the cowboy ethic.

The AHA annual membership meeting also highlighted producers for their outstanding commitment to the Hereford breed. That included Circle B LLC, Big Horn, Mont., being named the Commercial Producer of the Year. Circle B is an Eastern Montana commercial cattle operation owned by the Borman family and run by just over a dozen cowboys and their families. The Bormans breed their 1,600 straightbred Angus cows to Hereford bulls to make uniform, high-performing baldy calves that are the epitome of Hereford heterosis.

Circle B was founded by the father-son duo Frank and Fred Borman in 1998. Patriarch Frank Borman is known as an astute businessman not afraid to shoot for the moon — literally. Borman commanded Apollo 8, the first mission to fly around the moon. And when it comes to Circle B, the Borman family is equally as pioneering and progressive. For more than two decades, Circle B has served as a textbook example of a profitable cow-calf operation, mixing management, good ol’ fashioned stockmanship, benchmarking metrics and complementary genetics.

Fred’s wife, Donna, was the one in the family first taken with the latter. She read about the power of crossbreeding in “Storey’s Guide to Raise Beef Cattle” when the family first began their foray into Big Sky Country. Today, Circle B’s F1 cattle reflect the family’s commitment to artfully melding progressive ideas with proven tactics and business savvy with industry tradition. And the operation’s use of Hereford genetics pays off in the bull pen, at feeder calf sales, for their repeat buyers and in their budding replacement female market.

Through its involvement in the Hereford Advantage program, Circle B has seen improvements in its feeder cattle. Each year, the Circle B F1 feeder calves sell in the Superior Livestock Bellringer sale, and there is no shortage of interest. You could say their lots really do ring buyers’ bells. Year after year, their calves fetch premium prices, and the number of repeat buyers underscore their value. Hagemann Farms, Five Rivers, Beller Feedlot and Adams Land and Cattle Company have repeatedly purchased feeder cattle from Circle B, and their continued interest serves as a great testimony.

This year, for the first time, Circle B retained all their F1 black baldy females to market as bred heifers. Their progressive management and the Hereford-influence shine in this set of replacements who spent their summer grazing at the ranch’s Miles City, Mont., location.

Hereford exhibitors were honored for showing off their remarkable breeding programs at national and regional shows prior to the Ladies of the Royal sale hosted at the American Royal in Kansas City, Mo., Oct 21. Awards were presented to national and regional Hereford show bull and female of the year, and premier exhibitors. To earn the prestigious bronze cattle, exhibitors accumulate points by showing at national and regional events. Points were calculated throughout the 2022-23 show season, which ran from May 2022 through April 2023.

Glenrock, Wyoming’s very own Stellpflug Cattle Co. LLC was named the 2023 Polled Premier Exhibitor.

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