6511 Hillside School Rd, Spring Green, WI 53588 Google Map 608-588-5854
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Cattle Genetics

Genetics and Grass Grazing

Since the middle of the last century, American beef cattle have been genetically adapted to produce large-framed cattle, capable of finishing quickly in feedlots on a high energy diet based on corn. Concerns with the quality of our food have led to considerable interest in the “old fashioned” cattle – short legs and wide bodies, with large guts capable of digesting large quantities of grass, legumes, and forbs.

Our search for beef cattle that will finish on grass led us to Red Devon cattle, an ancient blood line that was first brought by the English Pilgrims to the United States in 1623. The registered cattle in our herd have pedigrees that go back to the American Devon herd book that was started in Massachusetts in 1855.

Our first purchase of Devon heifers was made in 2009 at an auction in New Paltz, New York, organized by the American Devon Cattle Association (now Red Devon USA). Those heifers, the foundation females of our Devon herd, came from Lakota Ranch and Oak Hill Farm in Virginia, and Brookview Farm in Kentucky. 

Our herd sire, Lakota’s Favorite T145, was sired by the internationally known bull from New Zealand, Rotokawa 688. Our bull (we call him Woodrow) was purchased in December 2010 at the Lakota Bull Test in Virginia, the only bull testing station in the country that rigorously screens bulls based on their performance exclusively on grass.

In addition to our registered herd, we are also producing crossbred cattle for the grass fed beef market by breeding Red Angus cows to our Red Devon bull. The first calves from this cross were born in 2011, and the growth and vigor of these cross-bred calves is very favorable in the grass-fed beef market. Stay tuned.

 

New Slideshow: Midwest Devon SaleJune 10th, 2015

Click here to view the slideshow.

Upper Midwest Devon Cattle Workshop and Select SaleJanuary 12th, 2015

   

LinksJanuary 10th, 2015

Red Devon Links Red Devon USA  Devon History (Oaklahoma State Univ) Red Devon History (Wikipedia) Ruby Red Devon Cattle (Devon Cattle Breeders' Society, Devon, England) Devon Cattle Aus

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Welcome to Hillside Pastures

Hillside Pastures is a family-owned farm in the Driftless area of SW Wisconsin. Our Red Devon cattle graze hillsides in the Lowery Creek watershed, just south Spring Green, the Wisconsin River, and Taliesin.

 

Our goal is to continue to build a sustainable and diverse grass farm capable of producing high quality Red Devon cattle and grass-fed beef.

 

Our mission is to bring alive and encourage a meaningful farm experience that includes our family and grandchildren, that we can share with friends and neighbors, and that contributes to the greater community.