The North Dakota Angus Association names Maychrzaks Commerical Breeder of the Year
Each year the North Dakota Angus Association (NDAA) selects a commercial Angus breeder who has successfully committed their time and resources to positively contribute to the Angus breed. A committee made up of NDAA board members reviews nominees each fall, and makes a selection. The 2021 winner was recognized at the Annual Banquet, held in Bismarck November 13th.
The Commercial Breeder of the Year award this year went to Eddie and Rauna Maychrzak of Scranton, ND.
Eddie Maychrzak is a third-generation rancher who runs a commercial Black Angus herd southwest of Scranton. He and his wife, Rauna, raise and develop dams known for their excellent disposition, deep-bodied phenotype and maternal strength and consistency.
Maychrzak founded his herd in 1989 as a sophomore in high school when he bought ten short-term cows. He sold the cows and their calves the following fall and utilized his earnings to purchase black heifers. While Maychrzak says his father always thought there was no better cow than a black baldy, Eddie decided he wanted to raise and develop his own females instead of buying F1 baldies each year. His goal was to develop a closed herd, and by 2000 he was strictly using registered Black Angus bulls in his breeding program. He and his wife, also implemented an artificial insemination program to improve their herd’s genetic profile. Eddie says Rauna, who was a vet tech before they married, has been integral in attending to their herd’s animal health. They and their beloved Red and Blue Heelers, Mack and Freddie, manage the herd throughout the year.
The Maychrzak bred heifers calve the end of March, and their bred cows calve starting the first week in April. They wean calves the end of October. The Maychrzaks’ steers are sorted, sold off the cow and marketed with Northern Livestock Video in the Northern Gold Program since 2005. They background heifer calves until January, select their replacements and sell the remaining heifers at Bowman Auction. Eddie and Rauna have relied solely on their maternal genetics for nearly two decades. Eddie believes that Black Angus dams top any other breed for mothering ability, and their calves excel with newborn vigor. “The Black cows have that ability to get that calf up,” says Eddie. “They just seemed the best fit for us, and their calves straight up bring a better price.”
While weather and profitability will always present challenges, the Maychrzaks believe Angus cattle continue to get better and better. “We used to a calf a month earlier, but we haven’t lost any weight in weaning weights,” Eddie says.
Eddie also admits that Rauna and he stopped utilizing AI several years ago after recording several years of great wean ratios and phenotypical standouts from their sires in natural service. The Maychrzaks select bulls from registered Black Angus herds in North Dakota and will continue to do so. “They produce great calves,” Eddie says.
Congratulations to Eddie and Rauna Maychrzak.
–ND Angus Association
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