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Hi-Kel TBone Pfennig-ET was the high-selling female at the 2010 All American Jersey Show, purchased for $21,500 by River Valley Farm, Tremont, IL. She was consigned by the Hi-Kel Syndicate, comprised of Hi-Land Farms (represented by David and Dana Chamberlain) and Kip and Robin (both couples back center).
Kip and Robin receive the Progressive Dairy Producers award from Dr. George Shook at World Dairy Expo in 2008. Photo courtesy National Dairy Shrine.
Den-Kel Jerseys LLC is a production-oriented Registered Jersey herd in Byron, NY, about an hour's drive east of Niagara Falls and halfway between the upstate cities of Rochester and Buffalo. The herd was established by Kip Keller and his late wife, Robin Denniston-Keller.
Kip and Robin began dairying in 1994 on Kip's family farm in Valatie, NY. They moved to the present farm in Byron in 1999, initially renting and then purchasing the farm.
Den-Kel Jerseys is one of the nation's leading genetic herds, ranked #16 for Jersey Performance Index (JPI), with an average JPI of +70 on 56 cows (April 2016). Seventy-one percent of the milking cows have been genotyped.
The herd has a 2015 lactation average of 21,300M, 1,085F and 821P. Among herds with 40-79 cows, the herd ranks 6th in the nation for fat and protein.
Den-Kel Jerseys has sent more than 20 bulls from several maternal lines to A.I. studs and focuses on polled genetics as a niche market. Den-Kel Jerseys routinely consigns to leading Jersey sales, including The All American Jersey Sale and the National Heifer Sale.
Though Robin grew up showing heifers, she learned the value of profitable dairying at Dutch Hollow Jerseys and High Lawn Farms, where she worked after graduation from Cornell and during the early years of marriage. Today, the focus at Den-Kel is on genetics that pay the bills with the milk check.
Den-Kel Jerseys strives for early maturity of heifers and increased days of productive life. The herd was switched to a high-fat, high-protein milk replacer four years ago to increase energy levels and boost growth and immunity. Calves are raised in individual hutches, then moved to super hutches and a new calf and heifer barn that was completed in the spring of 2009. Heifers are bred beginning at 9-10 months-of-age.
Cows are housed in a three-row freestall barn with sand bedding and an open feed alley. They are milked in a double-seven herringbone parlor and fed a high-quality, high-forage (60%+) diet.
Kip focuses on cow management and leaves cropping to a custom harvestor. Forage quality is a team effort, with Kip choosing when forages are mowed and chopped and covering the bunk silos on his own - all in 24 hours or less. Several years ago, Den-Kel Jerseys purchased a bunk de-facer to reduce dry matter losses.
Kip and Robin were honored with the National Dairy Shrine's Progressive Dairy Producers award in the small herd division in 2008 and the AJCA's Young Jersey Breeder award in 1999.
Robin received an International Young Jersey Educational Travel Award (JETA Award) from the World Jersey Cattle Bureau Conference in 2008 and she and Kip traveled to the Isle of Jersey.
Kip and Katie Keller
6476 N. Bergen Road, Byron, NY 14422
Phone: 585/548-2299 . Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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