She is the first purebred Speckled Park heifer born in WA, arriving a week early on June 14th 2012 and weighing 32 kilos. Garry Thomas, owner of Tungamah Stud has great expectations for her and her sibling, Tungamah Archie, who arrived on the same day, the first purebred bull-calf.
Garry’s interest in Speckled Park began a few years ago when his Gingin neighbour Tony Trainer shared with him a photo of a Speckled Park bull in one of the farming papers.
This interest was reignited when visiting his wife Bloss’s cousins on the east coast. On mentioning the Speckled Park, one of the younger generation, a mad keen cattlemen, had saved all the articles out of the land magazines and was keen to share the information with Garry. Garry contacted Dale Humphries, Speckled Park breeder at Wattle Grove.
Arrangements were made for Garry and Tony to go over to Sydney Royal Show and visit Dale’s farm to see Speckled Park cattle in the paddock. May 2011, Garry and Bloss went to NSW for a field day. “We were impressed and ordered a couple hundred semen straws and 150 embryos and bought them back.”
Garry is currently running about 500 breeders. “The ultimate aim is to have 100 purebreeds, stud animals and 500 to 600 commercial speckled animals.”
“I spent most of my working life setting up mines all over the world, I sold my business and made a large fortune, I’m now turning it into a small one”.
Garry is a civil engineer and still keeps an interest in mining projects. For Garry, mining and farming work well together. They aim to keep farming fun, and apply commercial experience to hopefully make a bit of extra money to cover costs. Recently, Garry and four other Speckled Park studs (including neighbour, Tony Trainor, Gingin Speckle Park) have come together to form a new incorporated business, Speckled Central.
“The goal of Speckle Central is to take the cattle from embryo to plate. Sold as certified Speckled Central meat, it will be processed and distributed with our label and delivered direct to the supermarket. One of the supermarket groups in Victoria are pretty keen to market Speckled Central meat.”
“We have to have the numbers to make it commercial. The Speckled Central business model, on the meat side of things, requires we process 8,000 bodies a year, which is
160/week.” says Gary. People might say they are a bit of a flash in the pan. From my research I think they can stay around for a long time and make a big impression on the meat markets.”
Garry will be at this years Perth Royal Agricultural show, on exhibition as a new breed.