Are they really worth a 1,000 words or a thousand $s? Yes and Yes. But it still depends on the seller. I can personally give you accounts of both sides of the story. Look at Joe Dirt’s semen prices. He doesn’t set the world on fire. Why? Because there isn’t a good picture of him and at this point in his career, who needs one? His track record compares favorably to most wether bucks in the industry. But there isn’t a pic. I can tell you what to breed him to, what to protect him on and still…..It is what it is.
Now, if you get a fancy pic of a new young buck (unproven), that picture will help you sell semen. This is not a Kelln opinion. It is fact. So, yes, a picture can be worth thousands of $s. I do believe that honest pictures are important in marketing livestock.
But, a breeder’s words should be worth more than the picture. For example, Duke has a set of barrows on feed. All 5 came from the same breeder. All 5 were bought sight unseen. An accomplice looked at a couple of them for me and he steered me in the right direction. I talked to the breeder about the hogs. He point blank told me, “I wouldn’t feed that hog for that show. If my kids were going, then I would feed this one.” My reply, “Then that is the one that I want.” So far, he looks to be correct.
My point is that it is in the breeder’s best interest to be truthful and give their best advice. Ask them. If they are reputable and have a proven track record, they can head you in the right direction. Even honest pics can lie to a person and give you a warm fuzzy feeling. Kind of like peeing in a pool. Yeah, you feel relief, but now you are swimming in your own piss.
I realize that I can be a little “harsh” to deal with, but I won’t head you down the wrong road. Most breeders want to help and do right. I want to cash a check, but I would rather cash a check every year instead of just once. I do believe that most breeders think the same way.
Here’s to the Schovanec’s, Vanderwork’s and Comstock’s who are in KC without me. All I can say is, “Lee,Schoovy and the kids, PLEASE don’t let let Scott Comstock do anything that I wouldn’t do. Keep him calm. Good luck and have fun.