VH Don Red - the bull from Vammen Holstein

Kim Fagerlin has added VH Don Red – the first ever Red Holstein bull, that is now top of the list in the breeding programme.
Kim Fagerlin
By VikingDenmark
 
Viking meets Kim Fagerlin and the mother of VH Don Red in the stable. Cow no. 2303 is to be shown to the photographer, and she accepts this with the utmost calm. As a rule, she's a lady with a mind of her own, who knows exactly what  – and what she's not prepared to do. Fagerlin came to realise this when he wanted to take her to a cattle show. She was not particularly cooperative, so that career was stillborn, but when you have produced a bull like VH Don Red and are a fantastic milker, you can turn a blind eye to things like that.
 
The Fageno cow is a high yielding cow producing an average of 15,000 kg of milk with 1,200 kg fat and protein. She was classified VG 89, and was the first Danish born heifer included in the VikingEmbryo programme. She came to Risbak flushing station when she was 15-months old and was flushed just once. The result was 11 ova, of which Fagerlin received four. Unfortunately, 2303 could not be flushed again, so she was inseminated and sent back to Fagerlin and his herd in Tjele. That pregnancy resulted in VH Don Red.
VH Don Red

Focus on NTM and appearance

Fagerlin has 140 cow units, of which about a quarter are Red Holstein. He likes having a mix – provided they are all Holsteins, he adds. Fagerlin is chair of a local breeding association and is heavily involved in breeding:
 
“My focus is on NTM, but I won't compromise on conformation. The cows should look good, and here I’m talking about mammary glands in particular,” he says.
 
Fagerlin divides his animals into three categories. A small group is inseminated with a view to breeding a good bull, another small group is for cattle show cows and finally there's a big group, made up of around 85 percent of the animals, that are inseminated for NTM and conformation. Fagerlin also aims for cows with good udder health and high female fertility.
 
He is proud that VH Don Red is performing so well and loves keeping track of his development. Right now, Fagerlin is getting good value out of the mother, who continues to produce plenty of milk, even though she calved back in April and only recently became pregnant again. She is the daughter of a cow that Fagerlin actually acquired by chance:
 
“The mother of 2303 was bought at a public auction in Aars, and when I was driving home, I had my doubts as to whether she was a good buy. I don’t any more.”
Dam of VH Don Red

Vammen Holstein:

  • Owned by dairy farmer, Kim Fagerlin
  • 140 Red and Black and White Holstein
  • Production: 11,400 kg ECM, 850 kg fat and protein
  • Milking three times a day
  • Manages 145 ha

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