Farm Walk- the McGrath Family.

AUBRAC Farm Walk

Sunday 06/12/15





The Farm is owned by the McGrath Family. They welcome everyone here for the annual Aubrac AGM to view his selection of pedigree and commercial Aubrac cattle.



Farm Background:

The farm is situated in Stratford-on-Slaney in west Wicklow, where the McGrath family have been running a successful family farm for the last number of years. It is owned and ran by Laurence and Bernie McGrath and there 4 sons Danny, Larry, Sean and PJ.

The farm consists of dairy, beef and tillage enterprises. The farm is currently milking a 170 Holstein type cows and 30 suckler cows. All calves born on the farm are retained and fattened on the farm. The dairy calves are fattened with the beef calves from the suckler herd and with weanlings which are purchased every autumn.  The majority of feed used on the farm is home produced with wheat, barley, oats, maize, wholecrop and beet grown and balancers being the only bought in feed.

In 2012, Pj started his own small herd of pedigree Aubracs. The foundation cow of the herd was a French import,Belote. Currently Pj has 15 pedigree females.

Reason for choosing Aubracs

Over the years we used a range of different breeds of bullson our dairy herd. We are now put our faith in the Aubrac breed andrun 4 pedigree Aubrac bulls on our dairy and suckler cows. The reason we chose the Aubrac breed were:

  • Ease of calving
  • Docility
  • Calf vigour
  • Constantly grading R’s and U’s
  • High feed conversion
  • Short gestation (283 days)

Beef Enterprise

All cattle bred on the farm are retained and slaughtered with Kildare Chilling and Liffey Meats. Until 2013 the farm consisted entirely of a bull beef system producing under 16 and 24 month bull beef, however over past two years 50% of the male calves have been castrated as weanlings.

With recent factory specs changing, we produce 24 month old bull beef and under 30 month bullocks and heifers.

All bulls are slaughtered between 18 and 24 months.

All steers and heifers are slaughtered between 21 and 24 months.

All fattening animals when initially housed receive silage and whole crop to allow them to adjust and are slowly introduced to the TMR.

The fattening cattle receive aTMR which consists of:

3kg’s of 1st cut silage

14kg’s of beet

3kg’s of barley

2kg’s of balancer

8Kg’s of wholecrop

0.5Kg’s of straw



Kill Outs

Tag NumberAgeGradeCold Weight KgsValue
391021573022U 16 Month BullU+ 3+383.601,605.77
391021523083U 16 Month BullR+3=402.501,651.15
391021563013U 16 Month BullU+3+388.301,615.32

The above are AU X LM bulls.


Tag NumberAgeGradeCold Weight KgsPrice per kgValue
391201522779      U 24 Month BullU- 2+458.40380.001,730.75
391021592967U  24 Month BullR- 2+392400.001,568.00
391021543011U 24 Month BullR= 3=392.70410.001,598.90
391021552716U 24 Month BullU- 2-418.70390.001,621.76

The above are AU X FR bulls.


Tag NumberAgeGradeCold Weight KgsPrice per kgValue
39102157308820 Month HeifersU= 4=289.30440.001,272.92
39102156300520 Month HeifersR= 4=321.60417.001,341.07
39102156303820 Month HeifersR= 4-310.30417.001,293.95
39102158301520 Month HeifersR- 3=298.30417.001,243.91

The above are AU X FR heifers.


List of Stock bulls used on the farm

Bull NumberD.O.B.SireDamReplacementTerminal
IE39103208091422/03/11RAMON ACAJOUDREYLANDS ADHIRA5 stars5 stars
IE18189422063902/03/13DUROCGARRYSALLAGH ENYO5 stars5 stars
IE39102151300028/02/13RAMON ACAJOUTRASSE4 stars4 stars

List of Pedigree Females

NumberD.O.B.SireDamReplacement (across breeds)
IE22100141054203/03/12NOLORGUES ARBONWESTFIELD SUKI5 stars
IE14130568073805/12/12VULCANIATHORNHILL VERSONIC5 stars
IE39102154296224/01/13ROUSSELBELOTE5 stars
FR120603944607/03/06TRAFALGARMARGOT5 stars
IE15111779048720/02/14ROUSSELTHORNHILL CAOIMHE5 stars
IE15111778049402/03/14ANDALOUTHORNHILL CARLA5 stars
IE39102151328007/04/14ROUSSELBELOTE5 stars
IE39102155338302/01/15ROUSSELALTAMONT HONEY5 stars
IE39102157338506/01/15ROUSSELTHORNHILL HALLOW5 stars
IE39102158338606/01/15ARMENIENWHITESTOWN INDIGO5 stars
IE39102152341412/02/15ARMENIENWESTFIELD HANNA5 stars
IE39102153347228/03/15EROSBELOTE5 stars





Congrats to Kelly Stephenson whose heifer Glencara Isla won the Champion Aubrac at the Tullamore Show.

Details of heifer ;                   GLENCARA ISLA    IE201255550343

DATE OF BIRTH;                               11-DEC-13

Dam Details :                    IE141305620468     THORNHILL CLODAGH

Sire Details     :                   IE151117730374       MOUNTCAIN FEIRA



Beef Farmer Case Study, Alfie & Marion Hanbidge, Stratford on Slaney, Co Wicklow.

70 suckler cows (20 purebred Aubrac and 50 crossbred ) 3 bulls ( 2 Aubrac and 1 Simmental)

All replacement heifers bred from within the herd.

The first Aubrac we bought was a bull to run with heifers for ease of calving from the Balilinclea herd.

On our visit to see the bull we got to view the herd of cows. First impression was they were the type of cow we were trying to breed through crossing different breeds. The following year we returned to purchase another bull and 8 cows, that was the start of our pedigree herd. The main benefits to me are:

  • Calving ease, whatever breed I cross them with.
  • Lively calves with good weight gain.
  • high feed efficiency with excellent grades.
  • Steers average kill out 400kilos at 24 months.
  • Heifers make ideal replacements.
  • Bulls easily handled and very active.
  • Cows docile, plenty of milk and good mothers.

The Aubracs are in my opinion the complete beef breed and all my replacement Aubrac cross heifers are 4 and 5 star.


Ploughing Draw Heifer


Attached photo of Ploughing Draw Heifer, Altamont Jazz being presented to the winner, Andrew Donnellan, Dunmore, Co. Galway, by breeder Leo Dooley, Bunclody, Co. Carlow.

Presentation took place at the Tullamore Show and Sale.

2015 Aubrac Council Committee

NamePhone NumbersEmail Address
CHAIRMAN + Year book

+ Finance Committee

VICE-CHAIRMAN+ ICBF + AIFrancis Donohue087.2518332
SECRETARYOlive Butler086/
TREASURERMartin Bermingham087 1235333
Finance Committee

PLOUGHING +Year book

Bernard Casey

Ernest Mackey





Pat Bolton

Alfie Handridge


Field officer+ A I +year book subcommittee + ICBF

New Purchase Contact

Francis Butler086/1647442
Website Sub committee

Website Sub committee


Catherina Cunnane

Michael Heslin

PJ Pollard

John Pollard

086 3325496




Leo Dooley

Bridger Barron


A.I  SUB COMMITTEEJohn Walsh0876786466
P. R. O + YEAR BOOkDenis Lenihan


087 2987901




ICBF + AI Sub committee+ Year Book

Micheal Hanlon 

Mirelle McCall

087 2709318   


PLOUGHING COMMITTEEJohn Barron                   0863898161