This week we are pleased to have our first guest blogger series. Joe Engel of Luck-E Holsteins, Hampshire, IL, initiates this series. Look for his continuing interview throughout this week, beginning with a bit of an introduction to the Luck-E operation-
Holstein World: What are the current stats at Luck-E? Number of Acres farmed, type of facilities? Family members involved? Sires being used? Major cow families that are being developed?
Joe Engel of Luck-E Holsteins, Hampshire, IL:We are currently milking 155 cows and have about 225 heifers and 50 bulls. Our farm is 185 acres and we farm a total of 500 acres. We grow all our own cornsilage, haylage, and high moisture corn. But we buy most of our dry hay. The cows are milked in a 38 cow tie stall barn with 19 units (1 between each pair). The cows are housed in sand freestalls. The main barn has 110 freestalls, our new barn for high producers has 48 freestalls, and the fresh cow pen has 14 freestalls. The calves are raised in calf hutches and then go to our new heifer shed until pregnant then they move to another farm so they have access to pasture. My brother Matt and I are partners with my parents who started the farm 40 years ago. The main sires being used are Dundee, Talent, Advent, Goldwyn and most recently Affirmed. Our first Talent daughters are now fresh and look really good! The family that has been at Luck-E the longest is the Klassy family. Klassy is a second generation EX-94. Klassy has transmitted very well for us for multiple generations, family members include two VG-88 2yr old granddaughters by Advent and farther down the line great great granddaughter Luck-E Kartoon. Other main families include: The Ashley family, Ashley was an EX-94 Starbuck that had six EX daughers, the most well known member is her granddaughter Luck-E Blitz Australia. Another family is the Bobbi family. Bobbi VG-88-2yr had six daughters, all of which went excellent. One of which is Luck-E Jed Bikini EX-92, she is currently our favorite cow in the herd and being flushed at Sunshine Genetics. The last family is the Starbuck Truly family. Truly is an EX Starbuck from a VG-CAN Triple Threat. The most notable branch of this family is the daughters of Trust Lee EX-93, the first three are VG-87, VG-88, and VG-89 as 2yr olds.
Holstein World: Joe”s interview continues all this week! For a look at the Luck-E website, visit www.holsteinworld.com/luck-e. Remember to check in each day for more from Luck-E Holsteins and stay tuned as we ask a number of breeders and enthusiasts to share their experiences, philosophies, and a few tips with us!