Welcome to Heartland Jerseys, owned by Jerry and Sue Spielman. As our name indicates, we are located in Seneca, Kansas, in "America's" Heartland." The farm is situated in the northeastern part of the state just a mile south of U.S. Highway 36, which follows the old Pony Express and Oregon Trails. The region's rolling hills and rich, fertile valleys are home to a large number of other dairies in the state as well.
The dairy is operated by Jerry and Sue and four full-time managers, four full-time foreign interns and eight part-time students. The couple's daughters, Misty Spielman and BranDee Stuke, work on the farm as their schedules permit. Grandson Zach Phillips also lends a hand with chores by feeding calves several times a week. Misty has a daughter, Erin. BranDee and her husband, Travis, have three other children, Koree, Trent and Treyton, in addition to Zach.
Heartland Jerseys Inc. is a fully Registered Jersey dairy that was established in 1988 with the purchase of two bred heifers. Since then, the herd has grown, down-sized twice and currently is 300 cows and 325 replacement heifers. Milk is sold to Dairy Farmers of America.
Jersey reproductive efficiency has allowed Heartland Jerseys to host four production sales in just eight years. The first event was held in 2005 and was followed by sales in 2008, 2012 and 2013. The fourth sale auctioned 409 lots for an average of $1,849.88. The high seller was Heartland Irwin Myra, selling for $36,400 to International Genetics/Bill Young, Collingwood, Ont. CLICK HERE to read a report on the sale.
Heartland Jerseys is enrolled on the American Jersey Cattle Association's (AJCA) REAP program and contributes to Project Equity. The dairy uses JerseyTags as its method of permanent identification and JerseyMate to select service sires for heifers and cows.
The herd ranks #45 for Jersey Performance Index (JPI) with a herd average JPI of +81 (12/13) on 216 cows. Twenty-six cows in the herd rank among the breed's top 1.5% for JPI or Genomic JPI. CLICK HERE to see a list of our leading genetic ladies.
Heartland Jerseys was an early adopter of genotyping technology. Jerry Spielman was featured in a roundtable on the topic in the February 2010 issue of the Jersey Journal. CLICK HERE to view the article. David Brandau of Wilton, WI, is the genetic coordinator for the herd and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 2012 AJCA lactation average is 19,725M, 994F and 747P, a mark that ranks ninth in the nation for fat and protein production among herds with 300-749 cows.
Last year, 52 members of the herd completed Hall of Fame records for actual cheese production 150% of the previous year's breed average.
Milking cows are divided into five groups: a group transition cows, two groups of high producing cows three-years-old and older; a group of two-year-olds; and a group of low producing cows nearing dry-off. Each day, the milking cows consume 91 lbs. of a total mixed ration, which consists of corn silage, alfalfa hay, ground corn, whole cottonseed, sweet bran, molasses and a protein/mineral supplement.
The milking herd is housed in four free-stall barns and milked in a double-seven herringbone parlor. The first barn, built in 1980, was designed for Holsteins, which we milked at the time. The barn and parlor were then converted for Jerseys in 1988. As cow numbers increased, additional barns were constructed in 1995, 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2008. Two of the barns were constructed one side at a time, in "baby steps" so to speak, to reduce financial burdens. The barns are bedded with sand and equipped with fans, sprinklers and curtains - all thermostatically-controlled for cow comfort.
Heartland Jerseys also has a hospital barn that includes a hoof-trimming table and a hydraulic chute for treating and working with cattle and a machine shed for housing feed equipment and feed commodities.
All replacement heifers and bulls are housed and cared for at the farm or facilities within a mile of the farm. Breeding-age bulls from cows in the top 30-40% of the herd are available for sale.
Top females are enrolled in the Heartland donor dam program. All recovered embryos are transplanted in below average cows here on the farm.
Heartland Jerseys is also active in service to agriculture organizations. In the summer of 2008, Jerry was elected AJCA Director from the Ninth District. He sits on the organization's finance committee and chairs the breed improvement committee.
Visitors or inquiries are always welcome. Thank you for visiting our website and we hope you return soon!
|Heartland Jerseys Inc.
Jerry and Sue Spielman
1892 M Road, Seneca, KS 66538
Phone: 785/336-2581 - Fax: 785/336-6699 - Email: email@example.com
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