PETER AND JULIANA MCARTHUR
The McArthur family have been breeding quality Poll Hereford bulls since 1984 when Bon McArthur and his sons Peter and Ian established Oldfield PHS after running a commercial herd for many years. Bon purchased foundation cows from Bruce Gunning (Emu Holes Herefords), Ant Martin (Dalkeith Herefords), Bruce Reid (Cortina PHS), Don Anderson (Inveraray PHS) and Stephen & Stuart Peake (Bowen PHS) to form the herd.
Peter followed his passion for breeding, exploring genetics and poll Hereford herds in South Africa, England, Canada, and America in 1996 and several trips “across the ditch” to New Zealand including the world conference in 2020.
The McArthurs have been a supporter of Breedplan since 1990, submitting thousands of individual data over 30 years. Now using DNA genomics testing, the future of stud breeding performance is assured at Oldfield.
Peter and Juliana took on the stud in 2008. Shortly after, they expanded the herd by purchasing 150 registered breeders from the South Australian Poll Hereford stud Markowen. These new genetics strengthened the Oldfield herd, run on “Burn Brae” at Mullaley and “South Yamba” at Emerald Hill near Gunnedah.
Oldfield bulls have been sold to valued clients throughout NSW, Queensland and the NT including well known Poll Hereford identities David Brooks at Birdsville, and the Hayes family at Undoolya Station. At the 2020 sale, David purchased nine herd improvers while the Hayes family recently bought several bulls privately.
"We select for functional cattle that can handle Australian outback conditions.
Good growth rates and fertility are essential," Peter says.
Peter decided to explore the opportunities in the Angus breed 3 years ago, and embryos from leading Angus sires and dams were purchased from the high-grade Premier Angus stud at Holbrook. "We realise that some of our buyers have shifted towards the black cattle, so we are moving with the times. We are confident we have some top genetics available to potential buyers", says Peter.
“We started with a diverse group of females for our matrons and believe our first line of Angus bulls are as good as any in the business. They are all grass-fed and will be prepared for sale on an oat crop. We are very excited to be selling 10 Angus bulls in 2021.
A small but first-class beginning."
On 3 September 2021, cattlemen will gather for the Oldfield annual bull sale and celebrate its 25th “Silver Anniversary” Oldfield sale. Held at Emerald Hill, 40 performance poll Hereford and Angus bulls will be offered to discerning stud and commercial breeders. The McArthur family are committed to breeding the best possible genetics in both Poll Hereford and Angus cattle. They invite you to inspect their breeding program any time.
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25 Silver Anniversary Bull Sale 1st September
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
BEN AND NICOLE HAYES, UNDOOLYA STATION, ALICE SPRINGS
Ben and Nicole Hayes run one of the largest Poll Hereford herds in Australia at Undoolya Station, east of Alice Springs. As managers of the sprawling 1440 square km station – one of the oldest pastoral leases in the NT – the pair traditionally run a herd of between 5000 and 6000 females.
The country is typically described as an arid zone, with an annual rainfall of about 286 mm or about 11 inches in the old scale. Numbers have been drastically reduced due to the drought but with good rains in early 2021, the situation is improving daily.
The Hayes family usually run between 80-90 bulls and in 2021 purchased about 35 herd improvers, including four
hand-picked by Oldfield stud principal Peter McArthur.
"It's a long way (over 2600 kms) from Alice to collect our bulls but it's well worth the effort," says Nicole.
"We like the consistency of the Oldfield bulls which we generally buy at 18-24 months of age. They do really well up here and easily adapt to our weather and conditions," she says.
"The Oldfield bulls always come with great structure and soundness and go on to produce very good calves."
The Hayes family say they will be definitely be back in 2022 for their next consignment.