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Fee for renting a bull

Discussion in 'Breeds & Breeding - Cattle' started by cjc, Jul 3, 2018.

  1. Jul 3, 2018
    cjc

    cjc Loving the herd life

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    Hi All,

    We got our first bull this year and now that he has done his job on our farm we have been renting him to a few neighbors. Right now I am charging $100 per cow in their field and that includes 2 months time. So right now he is at a neighbours with 4 cows so I charged $400 and expect him dropped off in 2 months.

    Just curious what the going rate is out your way? It's our first time being the bull owner and not renting a bull and I've had people charge me numbers all over the place.

    bull.jpg

    bull 2.jpg
     
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  2. Jul 3, 2018
    RollingAcres

    RollingAcres Herd Master

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    Hi @cjc
    I don't have any bull so can't answer your question. Just want to say you have a nice looking bull. What breed is he?
     
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  3. Jul 3, 2018
    cjc

    cjc Loving the herd life

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    Thanks! He is a Red Angus. He's young...about 2 years old. I got lucky with him and picked him up from an auction that no one showed up to so I got him really cheap. He's very quiet so he has turned out to be a great asset.
     
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  4. Jul 3, 2018
    Ridgetop

    Ridgetop True BYH Addict

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    No idea on fees. It depends on what is available in your area. What did you p ay to rent a bull last year? How good was that bull? Since your bull is only 2, he is a first time stud bull, and unproven (you don't know what he will sire.) If you are satisfied with the price you are getting, and don't have to feed him, that is probably a good deal. Do you have lots of people wanting to use him for that price? If they are pounding on the door, price is may be a little low but it gets your bull out there. If you are keeping him for another year, check on what his calves look like and maybe raise the price next year. He will be a proven bull then, with a record of siring calves. If you want to put him out again next year, take some pix of his calves next spring to advertise him.

    Red Angus is a good meat breed. Also in demand for using on first time dairy heifers because Angus have lower birth weight calves - easier on the heifers. Decent cross for beef too. I have heard that Angus are less docile than Herefords and some of the other meat breeds. You might decide to put a ring in his nose for easier handling eventually if you are keeping him and have to transport him.

    I would be interested in what the answers are from others.
     
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  5. Jul 3, 2018
    cjc

    cjc Loving the herd life

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    I've never had anyone question my price which had me thinking maybe I wasn't charging enough. Cattle people in our area always barter haha, but each time I've said $100 per cow people have instantly agreed. Which had me curious what the rate was. I have paid anywhere from $50-$200 per cow in the field for a bull rental fee.

    We will see how his calves do. I have a lot of different breeds I've bred him too so we are hoping he does well. We have quiet a few dairy cows he has impregnated (Jersey and Holstein) and a lot of Angus and a few short horns. He's now over with a Hereford herd with our neighbor I rented him to. We have had issues in the past with our girls not getting pregnant but he had our entire herd pregnant with in a month. Mind you our current herd is all heifers or second time calvers.

    I do have quiet a few people wanting him but he is also the only bull I have seen in our area, so it could also be the convenience of renting him.

    His first calf should be born any day now!
     
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  6. Jul 3, 2018
    Ridgetop

    Ridgetop True BYH Addict

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    Since his record on covering the cows and getting them pregnant seems about 100% in your herd, you know that your bull is fertile. I would check the fertility results with the other herds he is covering. Any cow not getting pregnant might be the cow if all your herd is pregnant. Also record the number of heifer and bull calves he produces, both in your herd and in the other herds he services. Since your fee seems very reasonable, he is the only bull in the area, and people seem very happy to pay $100 per cow, I would consider raising the fee after you see what his calves look like. Knowing the percentage of heifer and bull calves too, is an important piece of information to have in his file. Hopefully he will stay easy to handle which is another point to advertise in a proven stud bull. The lower fees you collect this year will get your bull known and balance out next year when you raise them.

    Keeping a stud bull is a lot of work, needs better fences, plus housing and feed during the winter months when he is not working as you know. If your bull's calves look good, and his fertility is high, it seems that you should increase your fees to pay for the added work and expense of keeping the bull year round. On dairy cows, the lower birth weight of the calves is important too. Next year you will be offering a proven stud bull with the records to back up his performance. You can then offer him at $150-200 a cow. Even if someone else decides to keep a stud bull and offers that bull at less money, you will have the records to prove your bull's worth and performance. Records are very important. Photos of the calves are good too to prove what good calves he sires.

    Hopefully this will work out. It sounds like you have a winner there.
     
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  7. Jul 4, 2018
    farmerjan

    farmerjan Herd Master

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    @cjc; hi good to see your post. That is more than anyone gets around here so if you can get it then good. We get about $250 for a 60 to 90 day period to the few farmers that we rent/lease to. They are also feeding the bull so figure it is worth at least another $50 a month.
    If he is the only bull in the area that might be why no one is questioning your price. Personally, it is more than we would pay but we also do AI like you used to. There are alot of bulls and farmers in this area and most have at least one bull of their own unless they have very small numbers, like the two that usually use a bull from us.
    We do a BSE on any bull that we lease out. Even if he has proven fertile in our cows. We had one we used for several years and the next year he was shooting blanks. So it pays to have a semen evaluation.

    The only problem with renting out a bull to several different places is disease. Vibrio comes to mind. It is something you surely don't want to get in your cows. It is a sexually transmitted disease and a bull will get infected from a cow, then give it to every animal he breeds after than. Also Trich. There are also others, like BVD and IBR causing some fertility issues but they are also air borne and can be vaccinated against. If you do a search for sexually transmitted diseases in cattle, I think you will get some information. This is not to scare you but it is a consideration. Mostly I think it does not show up in the bull except if he becomes infertile, but with cows things like abortions and such will show up and you lose precious time and then have animals that are infected and there are basically no cures to any of the STD's that I am aware of.

    How is your "baby" who isn't a baby anymore? Bet he is getting big.
     
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  8. Jul 5, 2018
    greybeard

    greybeard Herd Master

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    Fertile, probably so. How well he passes his genetics on to calves is yet an unknown.
    I would not want to rent any bull that is not 'proven', and by that I mean live healthy, functional calves on the ground, preferably calves that have grown to at least yearling weight or maturity. And, if I had heifers, I would want some kind of assurance the bull was heifer safe, that is, CE.

    And yes, trich would be my #1 concern. Most that rent out their bulls do trich testing before it leaves their pasture and again after the bull is returned, tho preferably right before the bull goes home and a stiff penalty assessed if the test comes back showing the bull is infected.
    Most of the time, there are few if any outward signs of the disease exhibited, in both cows or bull other than open cows or late bred cows.

    No real treatment approved for trich infected bulls either.
     
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  9. Jul 5, 2018
    Ridgetop

    Ridgetop True BYH Addict

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    farmerjan and Greybeard raise a really good point about testing for disease. I don't know much about the testing or cattle diseases, but your vet should be able to do it, right? Do farmerjan and Greybeard think you should test in between each herd he goes to? Or would be that something the herd owner should request you do? Hearing about the possibility of disease transmission from herd to herd by the bull, I suggest that if nothing else, you have him tested before bringing him home to your cows. If he is positive for anything, you will have to sell or slaughter him. Since you didn't have him tested before taking him to the neighbor, you couldn't even make a claim that that is where he picked anything up. Good to know before next season though.

    With our sheep and goats, I simply don't offer stud service to anyone. That way I don't have any animals coming onto my property. When I did offer stud service, it was to 4-H kids whose animals I had bred so no worries there since none of them had more than a couple.
     
  10. Jul 5, 2018
    farmerjan

    farmerjan Herd Master

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    We are very careful about who uses/leases our bulls. Have only a couple that do and they have basically closed herds. We have to be careful when we buy bred cows and what bulls we use on them, if we keep them for another calf or more.. It is easy to bring something home that even "Ajax won't wash off" as the saying goes. One reason that we have more bulls than we need in case something does go wrong like the one that was shooting blanks one year. We luckily checked these cows early because we saw some repeat heats and as soon as we realized they were all open but 2 of the 16, we pulled him, sold him and put 2 yearling bulls in there. They got the cows covered fairly quick but they were behind about 3 months. I don't think the bull that was "no good" had a STD as he had never been anywhere but with ours, something could have happened over the winter...who knows. We didn't have any problem with that group of cows breeding, calving or rebreeding the following year so felt fairly safe with their reproductive health. But it is a consideration.