Feed on Posts or Comments 05 May 2016

Category ArchiveDevon Cattle for Sale

Devon Cattle for Sale &Devon Semen for SALE saboranch on 22 Apr 2016

Devon Heifer bulls?

New questions are arriving as we work with other Montana producers in the creation of a dependable working commercial DEVON cattle herd.  Do you have dependable HEIFER BULLS?

As a heritage breed, Devons have always been known for mothering, gourmet beef, docility and fertility.  However, after calving out an 86 lb heifer and an 89 lb bull calf from two 36 month old Devon heifers from Brookfield Farm in Kentucky, we know that that bull won’t be on our heifer list!

SABO RANCH's young DEVON bull "C413".  Not yet registered, he will be tested on a few heifers later this year, along with his big brother "B413".

SABO RANCH’s young DEVON bull “C413″ at weaning in March this year. Not yet registered, he will be tested on a few heifers later this year, along with his big brother “B413″.

Luckily, we will be testing a couple of really nice smaller Devon bulls born here at SABO RANCH in 2014. We have begun the search for Devons that give small enough calves that the normal commercial breeder in the American West can count on using them for a gourmet grass fed/grass finished beef program, even from the first calf those commercial heifers give.  Since North Devon cattle (also known as Ruby Reds) in North America were listed on the brink of extinction only a decade ago, it’s exciting to see that their attributes are already recognized in the world of low-input grass finishing.

Devons excel in the arid, challenging fields of the Rocky Mountain West.  They calve out easily, they protect their calves vigorously against canid predators, and they are excellent attentive mothers.  And the DEVON HYBRIDS???  Strong, beefy, FAST growing, and already proving that they can easily provide CHOICE boxed beef with a 60% beef cut-out on a grass-finished carcass.

The major commercial black breed has been at this EPD program for over 60 years.  We are starting with the breed always known as THE BUTCHER’S BREED.  Now, we working hard to turn it into THE RANCHER’S BREED.

Subscribe to our blog to hear firsthand how we are progressing in this exciting project.

Questions?  Call Jenny and Mark Sabo at 406-451-6900, SABO RANCH, Harrison, MT 59735

Beef Cattle &Devon Cattle for Sale saboranch on 16 Apr 2016

Calving at its best


IMG_0572One of the aspects of calving that I love most is the care and love that good mother cows give to their calves.  While human-style hugs with arms aren’t in the picture, snuggles certainly are!  All over the field on a quiet, sunny morning, we find calves tucked into the warm embrace of their loving mothers.


Devon Cattle for Sale &Uncategorized saboranch on 28 Mar 2016

Australian Devon semen to be used at Sabo Ranch, summer 2016

We are excited to announce that after more than a year of waiting in the U.S., and the hard work of Australian Red Devon breeders Vic Edwards (VixDevons) and Alison Heap (Gowan Ross Devons), that the semen of Vix Jurassic J76(P) and Gowan Ross Gentleman G82(P) has arrived in the U. S.

Udders and Feet, and “Do-ability” in adverse conditions- that’s what we sought when we visited VixDevons and Gowan Ross!  Here’s a photo of Jurassic’s dam- just plain a beautiful working animal.


We will breed many of our current herd of Devon cattle to those bulls this year, and we can’t wait to see these Australian calves on the ground, and see how these award winning Devon genetics do in the wide dry fields of Montana.

We thank Vic and Alison for their generosity in hosting us at their Devon cattle station in January 2015, for opening doors to other Devon stations in their region, and for all the hard work and rigorous selection process that has brought the genetics from their award winning herds here to the U.S. to further enrich the Devon breed which we all love so well.

Sabo Ranch, P.O.Box 65, Harrison, MT 59735. 406-451-6900. saboranch1@gmail.com.

Articles &Beef Cattle &Devon Cattle for Sale saboranch on 02 Mar 2016

More Beef, More Grass, Lower Greenhouse Gases?

We have often heard that raising beef increases planetary methane from cattle flatulence.

Devon/Red Angus yearling heifers for SALE.  Deep bodied, gentle, gourmet quality beef producers!

HOWEVER, more GRASS FED beef often means that grasslands are improved for increased beef production. And, an improved grassland means a pasture that is dense with forage plants.

That means more oxygen, less carbon dioxide, and cleaner air!
Also, many grasslands are too arid, too steep, or just too rugged for farm machinery- so grass-fed beef is often able to be raised on ground that is not suitable for conventional motorized agriculture.

From the steppes of Mongolia and Kazakhstan, to the Serengeti plains of Africa, to the arid grasslands of the American West, GRASS grows BEEF.

dsc_0505Interested in supporting soil that grows grass?  Soil that stays covered in perennial forages, which protect against wind and water erosion?

Sabo Ranch Grass Fed Beef, available by the Quarter, Half, or Whole Beef, or Burger by the pound.

Call us at 406-451-6900.  Sabo Ranch, 303 Pony Rd., Harrison, MT 59735


Beef Cattle &Devon Cattle for Sale saboranch on 06 Feb 2016

Commercial Devon bulls for sale- born May 2014

Sabo Ranch Devons in Harrison, MT, is pleased to announce that we have some excellent commercial purebred Devon bulls for sale.  Devons, known as “the butcher’s breed” for their excellent intramuscular fat, docility, and easy forage-to-meat fattening qualities are highly sought for GRASS FED  BEEF operations.

Devon influenced steers, when compared to pure Angus steers in a feeding program in the Midwest, finished TWICE as fast, in 60 days as opposed to 120, in a conventional feedlot system.

Sabo Pablo, registered Devon bull age 20 months, 100% grass fed.

Sabo Pablo, registered Devon bull age 20 months, 100% grass fed.   SOLD

SABO RANCH DEVON BULLS, docile, fertile, and easy keeping, are the answer to a grass-fed operator’s needs for low cost finishing of steers on forage, and easy keeping replacement females.

Sired by  SABO EBAN (registered Devon bull) these commercial young Devon bulls, born in May, 2014, are ready to add real pounds at NO extra feed cost to your grass-fed beef operation.  Our own Devon/Angus steers routinely produce a 55-60% cutout on a 900+ lb carcass, 100% grass fed, at 20-24 months of age.

HEIFER BULLS ALSO AVAILABLE. These are smaller birthweight bulls, still Rotokawa genetics for excellent marbling and easy keeping.

A nice example of BEEF- Devon influenced calf at Sabo Ranch.

A nice example of BEEF- a 3/4 Devon heifer calf  with her Devon/Angus dam at Sabo Ranch.

Sabo Daniel- Eban's full brother, and the other sire of our Devon heifers.  Rotokawa 974 son.

Sabo Ranch Devon bull

Call for pricing, more photos, and bull availability.  Jenny and Mark Sabo, Sabo Ranch, P.O.Box 65, Harrison, MT 59735.  (406)451-6900 cell, saboranch1@gmail.com

Devon Cattle for Sale &Devon Embryos for SALE saboranch on 26 Oct 2015


Sabo Ranch announces that we have frozen DEVON EMBRYOS for sale.  Healthy, deeply mineralized cows and bulls for the best available embryos!  We have selected registered Devon cows for fertility, conformation, and mothering.  Registered Devon Bulls were selected for conformation, temperament, and outcross vigor.

CANADIAN and U.S. DEVON BREEDERS!!: We can implant these embryos into quality Angus cows here in Montana (summer 2016), and the resultant 80-day pregnant Angus cows can easily be imported into Canada.   This is an excellent way to import the highest quality Devon genetics— you receive fullblood Devon calves, and a quality commercial Angus mother cow for your ranch at the end of the process.   Live embryos will be available, summer 2016.   Contact Sabo Ranch at 406-685-3248, saboranch1@gmail.com for more information.

Te Maewa OBAN 867-11-H (born 2011) has just been imported by Sabo Ranch into the U.S. from New Zealand.  He is selected for depth of body, temperament, and excellent genetic lines throughout.  These Oban embryos will allow you to be among the FIRST North Americans to have OBAN offspring on your operation!

Tapuwae 635-P (New Zealand, born 2006) has never been available paired with these terrific Rotokawa Devon cows.

$500 each embryo, FOB Belgrade, MT.  Pairings are listed below.  Available while supplies last, prices subject to change without notice.

Tapuwae 635(photo taken Feb. 2015)/Sabo QUINN(heifer)

Tapuwae 635

Sabo Quinn(Daniel-RCC345)

Te Maewa OBAN 867-11/Rotokawa 414(2nd calf cow)

Te Maewa Oban 867-11



Tapuwae 635/ Rotokawa 357 (3rd calf cow)

Tapuwae 635







Questions?:  Contact Sabo Ranch, Mark and Jenny Sabo, 406-685-3248, saboranch1@gmail.com, P.O.Box 65, Harrison, MT 59735.

Devon Cattle for Sale &Devon Semen for SALE saboranch on 28 Jun 2015


Way back in the beginning we purchased many units of the original Rotokawa Devon semen, imported by Bakewell Reproductive Center before 2007. With some wonderful males and females in our herd representing each of these magnificent bulls, we have decided to let some of these straws go to others who might want to incorporate some of the ORIGINAL ROTOKAWA DEVON BULLS into their own herds.


Rotokawa 861- 40 units available, $100 each.

Rotokawa 667- 8 units available, $100 each.  We like every one of our 667 offspring.  Moderate framed, long bodied, great feet.

Rotokawa 974- 29 units available, $75 each (son of Rotokawa 667)  Beautiful, deep, long-bodied offspring.

This semen is stored in Montana.  Contact us at 406-685-3248, or saboranch1@gmail.com, with queries or to place your order.  Payment by check for semen can be sent directly to SABO RANCH, P.O.Box 65, Harrison, MT 59735.  Once the semen is purchased, we’ll put you in contact with the shipper so you can find out your costs to ship the semen to your farm.

Mark and Jenny Sabo

SABO RANCH, 303 Pony Rd., Harrison, MT 59735  (406)451-6900



Devon Cattle for Sale saboranch on 25 May 2015


Sabo Ranch is pleased to announce the arrival of NEW DEVON SEMEN tested for sale to CANADA and the UNITED STATES.

Pedigree and Breed information below. Questions?  (406)685-3248, or saboranch1@gmail.com.

$38/straw, purchaser pays for shipping from Iowa.

The PERFECT “Inline Outcross” for owners of Rotokawa Devon cattle!

TE MAEWA OBAN semen has arrived! Limited quantities available.

News from Graeme Dyk, Oban’s breeder in New Zealand, news from Oban’s 2015 calving season.  “You wouldn’t pick Oban as the same bull. He has really filled out and beefed up and when I weighed him last he was 1055 kilograms with still growing to do. Once again last calving, no calves pulled or cows assisted and his calves weighing from 35-45 kilo. Most in the 38-42 kilo range. His calves really stand out in the paddock amongst the rest.”

Te Maewa Oban 867-11                                                 TE MAEWA OBAN 867/11  (see pedigree below)

Te Maewa Oban 867-11Oban- G Dyke
This past winter, in January and February, 2015, Mark and I and our 2 boys were pleased to tour numerous Australian and New Zealand Devon studs.   Lots of terrific bulls, and we are importing some of them– to be available in the US and Canada!  TE MAEWA OBAN has arrived!  If all goes well, we’ll also be selling Tapuwae, and VixDevons semen before long, tested for sale in both Canada and the U.S.

Graeme Dyk’s Te Maewa Devon stud is a beautiful farm in the central north island of New Zealand.  Steep is not the word- many pastures would qualify as “precipitous”!  Yes, Te Maewa’s Devons thrive here, scaling the paddocks, putting on pounds, and producing beautiful, deep bodied Devons with strength, gourmet quality beef, and fertility all in one package.

IMG_1096Two Te Maewa Devon lactating cows.  Demonstrating how to keep on weight in steep paddocks, and the beautiful conformation that is consistent in the Te Maewa herd.

Te Maewa 145Another beautiful Te Maewa cow, showing off the udders which we have selected with Te Maewa Oban’s genetics.


IMG_1224Graeme, with four-wheeler and dog at the right, gathers heifers out of a paddock.  Incredible country, and the Devons move about like goats!

IMG_1137Having just tagged and weighed the calf, Graeme and the mother cow chat about its virtues.  Graeme keeps ONLY the calm cows!

Sire: WOODBURN 141 (P)
Animal: TE MAEWA OBAN 867/11 (H)
ROTOKAWA 557/93 (P)

EBV information:  Gestation length +1.5 days.  Birth weight +7.2kg.  200 day weight +28kg.  400 day weight +40kg.  600 day weight +57kg.  Milk +5kg.  Carcass weight +5kg. Eye Muscle area +1.1(sq cm).  Rib Fat +0.3(mm).  Rump Fat +0.4(mm).  Retail Beef Yield +0.6(%).  IMF-0.2(%).


QUESTIONS?:  Mark & Jenny Sabo, SABO RANCH, 303 Pony Rd., Harrison, MT 59735. (406-685-3248). saboranch1@gmail.com

Here’s what Te Maewa owner Graeme Dyk has to say about his herd:

“The Stud, 120 purebred registered cows still mainly based on Rotokawa genetics, is run as a commercial operation, no pampering, indoor stalls or hard feed etc. All heifers are expected to calve unassisted as two year olds. Birth and performance recording with Breedplan are undertaken and all young stock are carcass scanned and blood tested BVD negative.”

“Cattle are run in management groups to ensure cow breeding values are assessed correctly. The less efficient cows are culled to the works every year, the motto being (Breed with the Best and Cull the Rest). Cows are retired for age at fourteen years if still in the herd. Herd T.B Status is C10.”

“Calving percentages of 100% have been achieved several years but is normally around 96-97%. Calves are weighed, tagged and recorded in the paddock as soon as they are seen and at three or four days old are debudded if needed and shifted further afield with mum to more tree sheltered paddocks. The top weaning weights achieved to date for bull calves is 360kg @ 224 days and heifers 316kg @ 258 days. Winter supplements (hay and baleage) is given to calving cows to enable the feeding of magnesium oxide at a rate of 1 standard bale to 10 cows per day , and older bulls on crop to give them roughage. All young stock fend for themselves mixed in amongst sheep.”

Sabo Ranch, (406)685-3248.  Harrison, MT 59735. saboranch1@gmail.com



Beef Cattle &Devon Cattle for Sale saboranch on 15 May 2014

Sabo Devons move to CANADA!

Theresa Katuski unloads 4 Sabo Ranch Devon heifers at the Katuski farm in northern Alberta. Land of the midnight sun, with 6' of snow in winter and invasions by herds of hungry elk which can eat 2 round bales of hay in a night!!!!, these heifers will start the northernmost Devon herd in North America! (photo by Kevin Katuski)


We are proud to be able to support Kevin and Theresa Katuski’s commitment to quality, locally raised beef- even 4 hours drive north of Edmonton!  Interested only in the delicious hay in front of them, these Devon heifers show their docility, even after a 26 hour trip north and arrival in a new home.


Mark & Jenny Sabo, Sabo Ranch, Harrison, MT 406-685-3248.  saboranch1@gmail.com.

Articles &Beef Cattle &Dairy Cattle &Devon Cattle for Sale &Jersey Cattle for Sale saboranch on 19 Mar 2014

Do you want a HEIFER or a BULL?

Most of us would like to choose the sex of our calves, at least part of the time.  Dairy herds resort to expensive sexed semen, which still contains a good percentage of Y sperm, and still often results in bull calves.

10 year old grade Jersey 'Cupckake' with her 7th vigorous newborn HEIFER calf, uploading colostrum!

There is a better, and often more certain way to obtain the sex you WANT from your best cows.  That 14 year old mother cow who calves every year on a 365 day cycle without a whisper of trouble, and gives you one of the biggest calves in your herd?  Wouldn’t her bull make a great herd bull for your next generation?  How about that beautiful family Jersey with the world’s creamiest milk- don’t you want heifer after heifer out of her?

With careful planning and a minimum of effort and extra expense, there is an easy way to achieve the desired sex of your upcoming calf.

It has to do with the HEALTH OF YOUR COW!  A cow must be well mineralized and have a body pH that is moderately alkaline to conceive a HEIFER.  If her body pH is more acid, she has a high likelihood of conceiving a BULL.  Yes, the bull has a hand in it, but the cow is in control.  Have you ever noticed that the majority of calves in the front end of your calving season are usually heifers?  Those are the healthiest cows- they bred up, or bred back, the most quickly last year.

Although this fat Devon/Angus steer (just weaned at 9 months) is standing in front of a feeder, these three days post-weaning are the only days he'll see a feeder. Otherwise, his deep heart girth and mineralized good health will allow him to admirably compete with his herd mates for his 15 lbs of daily hay during the winter months, to gain weight easily on a 100% grassfed regimen, and to stay healthy until butchering at 22 months.

How do you get there?

Here are several tips that have worked for us in conceiving the calf sexes that we’d like:

1.  Remineralize your pastures!  The most expensive method up front, but the one that gives the most returns to YOUR ranch over time, is to improve the health and productivity of your own soils.  Minerals are most available to the cattle from mineralized, healthy plants.

2.  Mineralize your cattle!  While cattle would rather get their minerals from healthy plants, the bacteria in their gut can digest and incorporate ground up rocks from the mineral box.  Purebred cattle, with their lack of hybrid vigor (yet how could we have hybrids without those purebred genetics??) DO probably need a better mineral program than commercial hybrids.

We have had the best luck with Jim Helfter’s ABC Plus free choice mineral program- 100% conception, 100% healthy calves across 5 years- a record that pays for the more expensive minerals.  We tried Mark Bader’s Free Choice minerals, but lost 6 out of 31 calves to anemia- never took their first breath, or died within 24 hours- pretty expensive!  We have also talked with numerous cattle producers, from around the country, whose cattle “will not conceive & carry a calf with artificial insemination”, or “who only conceive bulls, not replacement heifers!”  Our universal advice is to improve their mineral program.  Cattle KNOW what they need on a daily, seasonally adjusted basis.  Give them choices, and they’ll keep themselves healthy.

3.  Give your mineralized cows adequate rest after nursing that calf, before calving again.  While most cows CAN calve out healthy calves, and rebreed, with only a 45-60 day dry period, their body recovery and condition is more likely to conceive a bull.

We have found that if we give our average cows- Devons, crossbreds, or the higher producing Jerseys, all 100% grassfed- at least 80 “dry” days, and then rebreed them in the 70+days postpartum window, we’ll get heifers.

The highest producing cattle, usually the ones that are thinnest going into the dry period and have raised the biggest calves, might need a longer dry period, and an 80-90 day rest post partum while they are only nursing, to give you a heifer.  Three of our smallest commercial red cows (who were also raising the fattest calves with the highest meat-to-bone ratio) received 150 days rest after their 5th consecutive bull calf, the last of which we sold as grassfed veal last year.  Each one of them conceived a heifer the following year.

If our goal is bulls, we can stress our cattle a bit more.  Good minerals are still a must, as deep bodied bulls only come from healthy mothers.  However, if one allows last year’s calf to nurse a bit longer- a 60 day dry period for the cow- or rebreeds that cow quickly postpartum, at 45-60 days, the next year’s calf is likely to be a bull.

4.  Select and cull your BREEDING herd, keeping only the healthiest cows.  Keep the cows with the 365 day breeding seasons (the next healthy calf arrives 365 days after the previous one).  Those cows have proven their genetic herd worth.  Fertility, mothering, ease of calving, longevity, are all embodied in those older cows.  No sense selling the “average” ones if they still work for you.  Just don’t keep their offspring in the breeding herd- that’s where your sale barn or retail beef program comes in handy!

These “best cows” will still give adequate bull calves to maintain the development of sale bulls, but you’ll be able to build your replacement heifers easily, and have plenty to sell over time as replacements and breeding stock for others.  We only make real money on a cow AFTER her 4th calf.  The best breeders have a good stock of old ladies, still producing healthy calves!  That’s where we should be seeking our next round of semen, should we go “off ranch” for new genetics.

I always ask WHY do cows conceive like this?  My theory:

The male offspring of a “cow interested in genetic longevity”, a bull, normally gets a LOT of chances to create that cow’s grandchildren.  If she’s a bit stressed at conception, her genetics will pass down more easily with a bull calf.

The female offspring of that same foresighted cow will only bear a few calves during HER lifespan.  Far better to conceive that heifer calf with the possibility of deep heart girth, great mineralization, adequate body fat to carry that heifer calf to a healthy, strong birth, and healthy “grand calves”!

Have fun, fall in love with the old ladies who still have healthy heifer calves at their sides, and enjoy the challenge of building sturdy, low maintenance, sustainable genetics for the 21st century of grassfed producers!


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