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Ashley Kirk on his trade display at the the World Brahman Congress at Rockhampton in May, earlier this year.
Nanjing Night Net

Onevendor delighted to return to selling at Rockhampton Brahman Week Sales is Ashley Kirk of Rockley Brahman Stud.

The Rockley Stud will return with a sale team of 10 bulls after an absence of three years.

According to Ashley, the family returns to the sale venue after working through and rebuilding their herd, after Bovine Johne’s Disease (BJD) was detected at the property in November 2012.

Since then, the Kirk family has welcomed BJD policy changes that have since been implemented, and are happy to put their ordeal behind them.

At the time Ashley’s response to this crippling blow was to reassess, relocate, and rebuild in a way that would position him at the peak of his industry.

“We have so far re-built the stud herd to 150 registered cattle, which are at Ungarra, in the Moura district,” Ashley said.

“We undertook several massive IVF programs to retain our female lines, and chose outside sire bloodlines to match to our donors.

“Our long-term goals are to produce our own sires to use in these programs.”

To rebuild the herd, Ashley drew upon the family’s extensive experience and embraced an IVF program designed to rapidly produce superior progeny, while at the same time preserving their irreplaceable genetics.

He was committed to ongoing visual assessment and data collection, and developed seven elite breeding attributes upon which all the Rockley Brahmans are assessed.

The seven elite breeding attributes included fertility, temperament, sound udders, do-ability, structurally sound, length and width of the beast, and clean underlines.

Additionally Ashley adopted a meticulous elite weaner grading system.

More recently he was named the Northern Australia Beef Research Council (NABRC) young beef achiever.

“I was very honoured to win the award and to be recognised within our great industry,” Ashley said.

“As a young producer, we have limitless opportunities to adopt and implement practices that have been developed through research and development.”

His NABRC nomination came from an existing program facilitator Barb Bishop, of Barbara Bishop and Associates.

The program which concluded in March was a big boost for Ashleyin terms of personal development, as he was recognised as one of nine young Australians chosen to participate in the Graeme Acton Beef Connection Mentor Program.

A component of his program was to develop and implement a project with the support of his mentor, Ken Rich.

Ashley chose to engage a marketing company to promote Rockley Brahmans, so it wouldhave a high profile web page, monthly newsletters, information blogs, twitter, and a hands on customer relationship with clients prior to and after the sale.

Also in 2013, Ashley was awarded a 2013 Australian Beef Industry Foundation Scholarship to take part in the Marcus Oldham Rural Leadership Program.

Ashley said that these amazing programs have really helped him find a structured way forward in terms of getting the Rockley Brahman Stud ‘back on its feet’.

“The past four years have really been tolling on our family business, but on a positive note I have really grown as a person,” he said.

“I have had great support from my family and friends, and I am hoping to be rewarded with consistently strong sales for many years to come.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.


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