NEWKIRK — As the temperatures rise during the summer months it is a signal for Newkirk FFA and 4-H members and students statewide that summer livestock judging contests are right around the corner. Many students look forward to these events every year.
This year’s summer judging contests include the Cherokee FFA Commercial Cattle Grading Contest, the Northern Oklahoma College (NOC) Sheep Field Day, the Big Three Livestock Judging Contest and the Perkins Commercial Cattle Grading Contest.
In order to prepare for these events, the Newkirk FFA hosted a summer livestock judging camp for FFA and 4-H members. The camp was meant to introduce new judges to what livestock judging is, how to correctly mark cards and the basics of livestock judging.
For more experienced judges it was the opportunity to refresh themselves on the principles of livestock judging.
When livestock judging, the judges are asked to select animals based on desirable traits such as structural correctness, muscularity and the overall eye appeal of the animal.
The students who attended this year’s judging camp were Carly Ballagh, Ethan Vap, Ashlynn Perry, Rowdy Barber, Jacob Merhoff, Baylee Perry, Ross Kelly, Trenton Morton, Lindsay Vap and Cole Vap.
The Newkirk FFA and 4-H students who attended would like to give a big thank you to Fagan Livestock (Jay Paul and Glacia Fagan, Colton Fagan and Tanner Cline) for providing a set of registered Angus bulls and a set of registered Angus heifers for the students to evaluate. They would also like to thank Bart Cardwell and his summer crew at the NOC Sheep Center in Tonkawa for teaching sheep judging techniques and providing ewes and rams for students to handle and judge. They would also like to give another big thank you to Carly Ballagh and Trenton Morton for discussing the selection of breeding does and wether goats.
Newkirk FFA President, Carly Ballagh, said Bart teaching the geometric principles of sheep judging has really helped her better understand how to select high quality sheep.
Newkirk FFA and 4-H members enjoyed the opportunity to enhance their livestock judging skills and to better prepare themselves for this summer’s upcoming livestock judging events.