The Johannesens started the Bazadaise stud in 1995 with an artificial insemination program into Santa cows. Prior to that, Rodney had been raised in the dairy shed and then in his teen’s his parents switched from dairy to beef. This early experience with cattle has continued to grow into today’s stud operation with some of his commercial cows tracing back to the original beef herd of 1972. He first became aware of the Bazadaise breed when he read about them in a magazine and liked the general description of their characteristics. Following the magazine article and before settling fully on the breed, Rodney did an array of cross breeding with 6 or 8 other breeds using AI and some natural mating. He found the Bazadaise were always the best performers and gave the best return at slaughter.
The area that Rodney could find fault was that the Bazadaise are a naturally horned breed. A special focus has been centered on those lines carrying the polled gene amongst his base cows and a grade up program has been firmly put in place. One of the highlights of the stud has been to achieve breeding the first pure Poll Bazadaise in the world. At Beef 2006 Folkslee Bazadaise Stud presented the world’s first pure registered poll Bazadaise. Folkslee Abby-Sylvia was born on 22/7/2005. This was achieved after 10 years of extensive trials, elimination, heartache and careful selective breeding from a base of poll Santa Gertrudis, Angus, Murray Grey and Red Poll.
“Folkslee Sylvia 192” is a valuable asset to the Folkslee Bazadaise breeding herd having produced all our pure poll Bazadaise. Two more natural poll Bazadaise females and a scur bull from “Sylvia 192” have been born through our embryo programs. On the 14/4/2010 we were delighted when “Sylvia 192” produced the first known poll Bazadaise bull calf. Folkslee Frontier will certainly be a leading Bazadaise sire of the future, a calf that is structurally correct, displaying all the carcase enhancing qualities of a Bazadaise but with the added bonus that he is naturally without horns. This calf by French AI sire “Talon” will be used extensively during 2011 in our breeding program over unrelated full blood females to speed the production of this valuable genetic trait and we believe there are no short cuts to the success of this vitally important genetic development. I was told 15 years ago to give the idea away as I wouldn’t be able to do it, but that was all the incentive I needed. It has been very slow being able to achieve our goals as we have had to start from scratch but as they say “Rome was not built in a day”.
Our goal is to produce breeding lines of high quality poll Bazadaise to supply onto the commercial market. We are at present carrying out new DNA tests to assist in the speed up and genetic spread of our Poll breeding program.
Folkslee Bazadaise Stud has a large and diverse genetic base of both fullblood and purebred Bazadaise and has used a considerable amount of imported French genetics to achieve this. The strict type breeding criteria of the stud has been displayed in the show ring with great success for a number of years.