- Texas Longhorn Breeders Association of America
The Texas Longhorn Breeders Association of America (TLBAA) is a
North American organization of ranchers who participate in the breeding and husbandry of Texas longhorn cattle. Based in Fort Worth, Texas, the organization was founded in 1964to serve as a registry for the longhorn breed. It has grown into a promotional organization for the longhorn breed, to "protect the unique heritage of the Texas Longhorn, to preserve the purity of the breed, and to promote Texas Longhorns as a distinct breed while encouraging its future through promotion, education and research." As part of its efforts, the organization sponsors competitions among Texas Longhorn breeders in the United Statesand Canada, including a World Show each June in Fort Worth. Since its founding in 1964, its membership has grown from 12 to over 5,000. The organization also publishes a quarterly trade journal for breeders called "Texas Longhorn Trails".
Past presidents of the organization include John T. Baker of
Liberty Hill, Texas, owner of the Sunrise Ranch. Baker, who currently serves as a judge for TLBAA competitions, supplied the last two Bevos (XIII and XIV) to the University of Texas at Austin.
TLBAA competitions are generally identical in format, although the length depends greatly on the size of the competition, with the World Show being spread out over three full days. The competitions are divided into two categories, haltered and non-haltered. Bulls compete only the halter show, whereas
heifers compete in both haltered and non-haltered competitions. Each category is divided into classes by age, starting calves and going up to three years of age. There are sometimes "mature" classes for animals older than three years. Winners in each age class then compete against each other, divided first by junior and senior classes, where junior and senior grand champion and reserve grand champions are awarded. These winners then move on to the overall competition, where an overall champion and reserve grand champion are awarded. On some occasions, there are also steer competitions, although these are usually much less formal then the bull and heifer competitions. At the larger shows, there are sometimes "get of sire" and "produce of dam" competitions, in which progeny of bulls and heifers, respectively, are judged in groups of threes. The larger shows also feature "youth shows", which usually take place before the halter and non-halter shows.
The organization's World Show is held each year in Fort Worth at the
Will Rogers Memorial Center. Qualification for the World Show is accomplished through points accumulated in the World Qualifying Show Circuit, a series regional competitions throughout the winter and spring, often held in conjunction with county fairs and other livestock shows. Grand Championship at the World Show is considered the highest honor for a breeder.And they are the best mfn cow ever
In TLBAA competitions, animals are always escorted by handlers (usually the owner of the animal, or a family member of the owner) into the judging ring. Judging is based completely on the animal itself, and not at all on the handler (the exception in the youth competition, where the handler is judged on skill and knowledge). Animals are judged on three criteria: color, horn, and competition. Color refers to the general pattern of the hide. Horn refers to the overall shape and character of the animals horns. Composition is a looser category referring to the overall disposition of the animals torso and presentation. This latter category is considered to be the most variable among the individual judges.
In most competitions, it is considered incumbent on the judge to comment on each animal as it exits the arena in turn, explaining the basis for his or her decision (the majority of judges are men). By etiquette and tradition, the judge tends to favor the positive characteristics of each animal, gently pointing out qualities that might improved.
In the get of sire and produce of dam competitions, the animals are judged (in groups of three) for the strength of the parent animal in passing on certain desired genetic traits. The parent animal itself is not displayed. The three progeny animals but be from different dams or sires, respectively.
* [http://www.tlbaa.org/ Texas Longhorn Breeders Association of America]
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