Sunday, April 22, 2012

breeding plans for 2012

We have gone from the “wish list” in the winter to the reality that we must make some decisions. We use a lot of Team Nijhof semen. We do this for several reasons which include that we have a good working relationship with them having bought foals and frozen from them over the years. They have a good selection of stallions. Nijhof produces good quality frozen semen and if they have a stallion that does not freeze well they will alert you to the possible problems. Also, breeding come with a live foal guarantee. We are not limited to their stallions and have used Brentanna II, Contango etc. We plan to breed seven mares this year. Last year was not a great breeding year so we have only four mares foaling this year and three open mares to breed. We like to breed to foal late April at the earliest to avoid foaling in our our notorious mud season. We now have the frozen semen in the tank we plan to use this year. We will do a series of blogs starting with this one which will outline our plans at this time. Again this is only firm when we have seen an embryo in the mare. We will start with Veganieta . a ten year old Jazz/Zeoliet mare. Her photos and offspring are at . The objective of a breeding program is to improve on your mares and produce a better generation. However, with this mare we would be happy to produce a foal which is as good as the dam. She was in the final class in Holland at the national foal championships. That is rising to the top from thousands of foals. At her Keuring as a three year old she had the best conformation for three year olds in North America and was third for movement. Those who are familiar with Dutch pedigrees may have a question about temperament. Jazz, Zeoliet and Amor were all know for being “hot”. I have heard the comment that this mare’s pedigree is not a pedigree but a “death wish”. However, all the offspring from this mare have been super to work with and the older ones have done very well in the show ring. I discussed this pedigree with a successful breeder in Holland and he said “three right turns make a left”. Veganieta’s five year old Sandro is with Martha and is doing well. When we talk to breeders in Holland they all talk about breeding Jazz to Contango from Iron Spring Farms. Contango is the sire of Ravel. We have two offspring from this mating. A 2010 colt and 2011 filly. We are pleased with both of them. So our plan is to breed Veganieta to Contango this year. Many breeders think that Contango is a good choice to improve the action of the hind leg and canter. These two traits would come from the jumping breeding in Contago's pedigree. We have seen this in our two Jazz/Contango from this mare. Also, Veganieta can use a bit more bone size. Again both of these have more bone size than their dam. We will continue with the other mare plans later.

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