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October 16, 2009
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SD lamb producers honored at banquet

The South Dakota Master Lamb Producers Association honored three lamb producers during the 2009 South Dakota Sheep Growers Association Conference held Sept. 26.

Beryl and Margaret Veal, along with Greg and Marsha Veal, all of Meadow, and all owners and operators of VTV Ranch, Inc., were named the South Dakota Master Lamb Feeder Lamb honorees.

Rufus and Patty DeZeeuw, and their sons, Adam and Austin, all of Elkton, were named the South Dakota Master Lamb Purebred honorees.

Jodi and Mike Hook, Jr. were named the South Dakota Master Lamb Lamb-to-Finish honorees.

South Dakota Cooperative Extension Sheep Specialist Jeff Held, who serves as the executive secretary of the South Dakota Sheep Growers Association, said the all the honorees earned their recognition through hard work and distinct service to the sheep industry in the state.

VTV Ranch, Inc. is a diversified livestock, crops and forage-based operation, and their sheep enterprise consists of commercial western white-faced ewes and home-raised Hampshire terminal sires.

They were honored in part because of their excellent winter-shed lambing system whose strength in ewe prolificacy and rapid-growing terminal sired feeder lambs is well-known.

"VTV Ranch was also honored for their excellent wool quality, with a 62-64s grade on the clip and grease-fleece weights over 11 pounds," said Held. "Their feeder lambs are marketed in July and August to take advantage of favorable summer price trends, and their ewes have higher body condition resulting from the recovery period between weaning and ram exposure, which is a key management step toward improving flock prolificacy."

The DeZeeuw Family sheep operation is comprised of nationally competitive purebred Suffolk, Columbia, and Hampshire flocks, totaling 150 foundation females.

"Since 1980, they have worked hard to produce superior commercial terminal sire rams that excel in growth and carcass traits, and they create breed-building elite females," Held said. "They consign animals to national shows and sales, including the Midwest Stud Ram Sale, and the Newell Ram Sale, and they have exhibited at numerous state fairs to promote their flock genetics."

Held said that the DeZeeuw's sons, Adam and Austin, established a Columbia flock more than 10 years ago as a 4-H and FFA project.

"These young men gained invaluable experience and personal growth through youth livestock project activities and events," Held said. "Their sons are now in college, but in the past the entire family has been active in many leadership and promotional roles for state breed organizations and the state sheep organization."

Jodi and Mike Hook, Jr. have developed a 500-head commercial winter lambing flock focusing on ewe productivity and finishing lamb growth performance.

"Their main flock profit center is producing finished lambs sired by Hampshire rams that excel in growth efficiency and carcass traits," said Held. "They make their selection for replacement ewes based on prolificacy and milk production, which are key variables for successful sheep operations."

Held also mentioned the Hook's efforts with a newly constructed facility for lamb rearing and finishing that has improved the pounds-of-lamb sold per ewe and reduced the days on feed for finishing lambs by 20 percent.

For more information on the South Dakota Master Lamb Recognition Program, call Jeff Held at (605) 688-5433.

The South Dakota Master Lamb Producers Association honored three lamb producers during the 2009 South Dakota Sheep Growers Association Conference held Sept. 26.

Beryl and Margaret Veal, along with Greg and Marsha Veal, all of Meadow, and all owners and operators of VTV Ranch, Inc., were named the South Dakota Master Lamb Feeder Lamb honorees.

Rufus and Patty DeZeeuw, and their sons, Adam and Austin, all of Elkton, were named the South Dakota Master Lamb Purebred honorees.

Jodi and Mike Hook, Jr. were named the South Dakota Master Lamb Lamb-to-Finish honorees.

South Dakota Cooperative Extension Sheep Specialist Jeff Held, who serves as the executive secretary of the South Dakota Sheep Growers Association, said the all the honorees earned their recognition through hard work and distinct service to the sheep industry in the state.

VTV Ranch, Inc. is a diversified livestock, crops and forage-based operation, and their sheep enterprise consists of commercial western white-faced ewes and home-raised Hampshire terminal sires.

They were honored in part because of their excellent winter-shed lambing system whose strength in ewe prolificacy and rapid-growing terminal sired feeder lambs is well-known.

"VTV Ranch was also honored for their excellent wool quality, with a 62-64s grade on the clip and grease-fleece weights over 11 pounds," said Held. "Their feeder lambs are marketed in July and August to take advantage of favorable summer price trends, and their ewes have higher body condition resulting from the recovery period between weaning and ram exposure, which is a key management step toward improving flock prolificacy."

The DeZeeuw Family sheep operation is comprised of nationally competitive purebred Suffolk, Columbia, and Hampshire flocks, totaling 150 foundation females.

"Since 1980, they have worked hard to produce superior commercial terminal sire rams that excel in growth and carcass traits, and they create breed-building elite females," Held said. "They consign animals to national shows and sales, including the Midwest Stud Ram Sale, and the Newell Ram Sale, and they have exhibited at numerous state fairs to promote their flock genetics."

Held said that the DeZeeuw's sons, Adam and Austin, established a Columbia flock more than 10 years ago as a 4-H and FFA project.

"These young men gained invaluable experience and personal growth through youth livestock project activities and events," Held said. "Their sons are now in college, but in the past the entire family has been active in many leadership and promotional roles for state breed organizations and the state sheep organization."

Jodi and Mike Hook, Jr. have developed a 500-head commercial winter lambing flock focusing on ewe productivity and finishing lamb growth performance.

"Their main flock profit center is producing finished lambs sired by Hampshire rams that excel in growth efficiency and carcass traits," said Held. "They make their selection for replacement ewes based on prolificacy and milk production, which are key variables for successful sheep operations."

Held also mentioned the Hook's efforts with a newly constructed facility for lamb rearing and finishing that has improved the pounds-of-lamb sold per ewe and reduced the days on feed for finishing lambs by 20 percent.

For more information on the South Dakota Master Lamb Recognition Program, call Jeff Held at (605) 688-5433.


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Tri-State Livestock News Updated Aug 14, 2012 03:46PM Published Oct 16, 2009 01:19PM Copyright 2009 Tri-State Livestock News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.