Why

Speckle Park?

Almarlea Speckle Park Stud was established in 2008 by Mark and Leanne Pointon. As an original Speckle Park Cattle breeder in Australia we have grown our stud to become one of the largest Speckle Park Studs in Australia . Almarlea Speckle Park Stud is located 5 kilometres from Oberon in the NSW Central Tablelands. We have offered Speckle Park Bulls and and Stud Females for sale by private treaty since 2009.

At Almarlea Speckle Park we invest a substantial amount of time and resources into researching and selecting elite genetics to meet our breeding philosophy. These are then selective bred into our stud program.

Our original genetics where sourced from Codiak Acres Speckle Park, River Hill Speckle Park, Johner Stock Farm and Notta Ranch Speckle Park. These are leading Studs in Canada and they have had great success in promoting the breed through their efforts in the show ring at Farmfair International, Calgary Stampede and Canadian Western Agribition. This is backed up by the annual sales that include Summit 3 Sale, The Source and the All Canadian Speckle Park sale.

To satisfy the demand for our stock and genetics, we also run an extensive embryo program on farm. Our genetics have proven to produce excellent progeny, with the success of our program having been demonstrated in the show ring and through feedback received from producers.

We started showing cattle in 2011 which has allowed us to benchmark our breeding stock against fellow Speckle Park breeders.

With our success in the Speckle Park show ring we have been able to go up against the best cattle that Australia has to offer in the interbreed judging where we have also achieved great results for such a young breed in the country.

Almarlea Speckle Park Show Ring Successes.

Since 2011 Almarlea has had great success, winning 17 Grand Champion titles and 7 Supreme Exhibit Speckle Park awards at Royal shows in NSW and interstate. This has culminated with our cow ASP F48 and calf placing 4th in the interbreed judging at Canberra Royal Show in 2013 and ASP F49 awarded as Interbreed Champion Heifer at the 2011 Melbourne Royal Show, being a world first for the Speckle Park breed. We were awarded the Premier Breeder at the Sydney Royal
In 2012.

Our current generation of Almarlea bred Speckle Park are now proving themselves in the show ring, with Almarlea Kingsley H60 awarded 2013 Sydney Royal Junior Champion and 2013 Grand Champion Speckle Park Bull at Bathurst. He also achieved Reserve Senior Bull at Royal Canberra in 2014. His dam Almarlea E6 also took the broad ribbon for Senior Female at Canberra in 2014. In 2015 we also won Junior Champion Bull and Junior female and Grand Champion Female at Canberra Royal show. Almarlea also achieved Breeders group and Sires progeny success.

We are proud to offer progeny from our elite Bull seed stock with Almarlea Lacerta E7 and Almarlea Lacerta F156 Supreme Exhibits 2011 and 2012 Sydney Royal respectively. We also have to offer progeny from Codiak 24X, Codiak Putnam, Codiak Amigo and PAR Pappa Razzi. Please see our sales page or give us a call for more details.

We have bulls for sale, elite embryos from our female lines, ET pregnancies and weaners are also available for sale all year round by private treaty.

Whether you are after your next herd sire for hybrid vigour, starting your own herd of Speckle Park cattle and are seeking premium genetics Almarlea Speckle Park has your requirements covered.

Breed Characteristics

Speckle Park are genetically black with varying amounts of white in specific patterns. The speckle pattern is preferred but the other patterns are very much accepted. The speckle pattern is predominantly black with a white top line and underline, with speckled hips, and sometimes shoulders, and with a black or black roan face. The leopard pattern shows more white than the speckle pattern. In the leopard pattern the black sides of the speckle pattern are broken into a series of definite black spots. The number and size of the spots varies greatly from animal to animal. Some leopards have predominantly white sides with only a few black spots or splashes on their sides. The leopard also has a white top line and underline. The third colour pattern is the white with black points. Animals with this pattern are predominantly white on the body and face but always have black points, that is to say, the ears, nose, skin around the eyes and the lowest portion of the legs including the hooves are black, teats are also black. These same points are black on all of the patterns.

Speckle Park History

In late 1937 Mary Lindsay, the daughter of a beef farmer of Greenstreet Northern Saskatchewan, Canada, spotted a uniquely coloured speckled red roan heifer in her father's herd. The unique coloured pattern impressed her as she had always been interested in unusual colours in livestock especially cattle, she bought that heifer from her dad.

She found regardless of the breed of sire she bred the cow to it always produced calves with that colour pattern. It is believed that the heifer was a descendent of a Teeswater Shorthorn which carried the White Park gene as well. These two ancient breeds dating back to the 16th century were hard, strong and milky. Mary continued to breed speckled cattle and found that the speckled pattern was a dominant trait in her newer version of those ancient breeds. They were quite in nature and kept the hardiness of their ancestors. 

In the late 1950's Beef cattle breeders, Bill and Eileen Lamont, of Maidstone, SK who at that time were breeding Angus cattle and Appaloosa horses came across Mary Lindsay's speckled cattle and simply thought speckled cattle would go well with their speckled horses and black cows, little did they know what they had stumbled upon.

In 1959, Eileen and Bill, bought their first speckled heifer from Mary and the 'wheels had been set in motion.' It was to lead to the development of what is now known as the Speckle Park cattle breed, one of the most dynamic and cattleman friendly of all the British breeds to ever be bred. The Lamonts crossed their "speckled" cows with superior registered Black Angus bulls in late 50's and early 60's. The resulting offspring came in a variety of colour patterns, some white with black points, some leopard coloured (spotted on their sides ) and some black sided with speckled hips, white top and underline and roan faces.

As the years went on the Lamont's diligent work in breeding high quality carcass cattle, light birth weights with speckles continued. After much deliberation they decided to name their cattle SPECKLE PARK cattle. Other beef cattle breeders saw them come through the cattle markets and bringing a premium price. Their interest grew in these hardy, heavy milking and distinctly marked cattle to the stage they started purchasing bulls and females from the Lamont's to try them in their herds. Within a few short years a dedicated group of breeders were now breeding Speckle Park cattle mainly from the Nielburg area of northern Saskatchewan. These breeders were hooked on these cattle.

The Lamonts could have quit these cattle with the Appaloosa look many times, what with all the trials and tribulations of keeping the breed afloat on their own but they were determined to make their Speckle Park cattle a pure breed. In 1985 with the help and support of nine of those other Saskatchewan cattlemen the Canadian Speckle Park Association was formed. Their aim from there on was to stabilize the breed and have Speckle Park recognized as a pure breed.

On June 4, 1993, Agriculture Canada approved the incorporation of the Canadian Speckled Park Association and were declared an EVOLVING breed of cattle. On Feb. 14, 1995, the Association's first set of by-laws was granted ministerial approval.

Unlike most other countries, Canada's Minister of Agricultural and through the Animal Pedigree Act insists on anyone trying to start a new breed have to go through stringent protocol procedures to have the breed declared a "DISTINCT BREED". This comes after the period of time the breed is in the EVOLVING breed status, all of which is overseen by Government Authorities. Stabilizing Breed characteristics and keeping pedigrees are two major protocols that have to be upheld.

History was made on July 6th 2006 when the Minister for Agriculture announced the SPECKLE PARK BREED a DISTINCT PURE BREED the first and only breed to be developed in Saskatchewan CANADA.

Today there are over 70 Purebred members and some 3,000 registered cows on the register in Canada alone. In 2007 and 2008 over 700 embryos and 1500 straws of Speckle Park genetics have been exported to Australia, New Zealand and Ireland.

Carcass Traits

Speckle Park Carcass Traits

Speckle Park have gained a reputation as a carcass breed of the highest quality and moderate size. The breed has established this reputation primarily by means of its outstanding performance in carcass competitions and steer tests. Anecdotal evidence also is abundant, but the following competition and test results make the point. The following statistics are based primarily on straight Speckle Park but also include Speckle Park influenced animals.

Calgary Stampede Steer Carcass Competitions

‘2001 Grand Champion Carcass – A Speckle Park’

In 2000 for the first time eight (8) Speckle Park steers were entered in the Steer Classic competition at the Calgary Stampede. All 8 steers then went on to enter the carcass competition. The results were impressive. Of the 98 carcasses in the competition, only 13 qualified as Sterling Silver beef, and four (4) of those thirteen were Speckle Park. In the following year ten (10) carcasses were entered and the Grand Champion carcass was a Speckle Park.

2006 Calgary Stampede Carcass Competition

In 2006 just days after being granted the status of distinct breed a Speckle Park steer won the Stampede Carcass competition. This win was also particularly significant because three of the first four placings were Speckle Park steers.

The following table highlights the performance of Speckle Park in this steer carcass competition.

Calgary Stampede Carcass Competition 2000, 2001, 2002 and 2003:
                                                                             Other Breeds                      Speckle Park
No. of Carcasses (in 4 yrs.)                                        289                                       37
Sterling Silver Carcasses                                       44/289 = 15%                      7/37 = 19%
Grading YG1-AAA                                                  48/289 = 17%                    10/37 = 27%
Grading AAA                                                        106/289 = 37%                    15/37 = 41%

Calgary Stampede Halter to Hook (Heifer) Carcass Competition

Speckle Park made their debut appearance in the ‘Halter to Hook’ competition in 2002 with one heifer. In 2003 a Speckle Park breeder entered the competition for a second time and again with only one heifer. This second heifer received the second highest number of points in the live competition and the highest number of points in the carcass competition and become the Champion of the Halter to Hook competition.

Speckle Park Carcasses - Calgary Stampede 2000, 2001, 2002, and 2003
4-Yr. Average (37 Carcasses) Ideal - According to rules of the Sterling Silver Carcass Competition
Live Weight 1146 lbs.
Carcass Weight 696 lbs. 600-700 lbs.
Lean Meat Yield 60.69%
Fat Cover 8.2 mm 4 mm
Rib-Eye Area 86.01 sq. cm 80-89 sq. cm

Steer-A-Year Project, Olds College – 2000, 2001, 2002 and 2003

Speckle Park steers have also been entered in the Steer-A-Year project at Olds College, Olds, Alberta, starting in 2000. Various breeds are represented in this project with 5 steers from each. The official test begins at the beginning of November and ends when the last of the steers go to market in about April. The Speckle Park steers entered in this project again showed above average carcass quality as indicated in the table below.

Steer-A-Year Project
Totals for 2000, 2001, 2002 and 2003
Other Breeds Speckle Park
No. of Carcasses (in 4 yrs.) 264 19
Grading YG1-AAA 27/264 = 10% 4/19 = 21%
Marbling AAA 45/264 = 17% 9/19 = 47%

4-Yr. Average (19 Carcasses)
Initial Weight on Test 578 lbs.
Carcass Weight 655 lbs.
Lean Meat Yield 58.43%
Rib Eye Area 77.36 sq. cm

Frequently Asked Questions

Where did Speckle Park originate?

Speckle Park originated in Saskatchewan, Canada. It is the first and only beef breed ever to be developed in Saskatchewan and one of the few to be developed in Canada. Speckle Parks where first imported into Australia in 2007 with the first embryos implanted in August of the same year.

When did Speckle Park come into existence?

In the early 1960's. In 1959 Bill & Eileen Lamont of Maidstone, Saskatchewan, bought their first speckled animal from Mary Lindsay of Greenstreet, Saskatchewan. They crossed it with one of their registered black Angus bulls and the result was what we now call 'Speckle Park'. It was sometime in the early 1960's that the Lamonts and others decided to make it a breed and to name the breed 'Speckle Park'.

What breeds make up Speckle Park?

The English settlers who founded Lloydminster brought with them from England dual purpose Shorthorns and other cattle with the White Park colour pattern. These animals gave Speckle Park their distinctive colour patterns. They were then bred to black Angus to create what is now known as 'Speckle Park'.

Why would one want to raise Speckle Park?

Their number one strong point is their consistently high quality carcass. They are also easy calving, feed efficient, docile, and hardy and healthy. The present beef industry is demanding 300 and 340 kilogram carcasses of well marbled beef. That is exactly what Speckle Park has to offer. The meat is lean, yet well marbled. Butchers are impressed with the fact that Speckle Park are able to achieve AAA marbling without the thick layer of outer fat which usually accompanies a AAA carcass. The AAA marbling makes for tasty, tender beef. Breeders of the larger framed breeds are finding Speckle Park bulls a good choice for breeding. They not only contribute to calving ease but also increase carcass quality.

Are Speckle Park distinct purebred breed?

Yes. On July 6 of 2006 Speckle Park were granted distinct breed status by the Canadian Minster of Agriculture according to the terms of Canada's Animal Pedigree Act 1988.

Is every animal with a Speckle Park colour pattern a Speckle Park?

No. Speckle Park are more than a colour pattern. There are many other breeds and crosses of these breeds which share these same markings.

Are they Feed Efficient?

Cattlemen feeding Speckle Parks for the first time are very impressed with the feed efficiency of the breed. By many, throughout Canada they are referred to as 'easy keepers' 'easy doing'. The figures that have been accumulated on feed efficiency are a result of testing in college projects. The statistics that have been obtained indicate Speckle Park to be more than competitive when it comes to feed efficiency compared to other breeds. In the first three years that Speckle Park have participating in the Steer-A -Year project in Olds College, Olds, Alberta Canada, the Speckle Park steers consumed 5.5 lbs of feed per lb. of gain compared to 5.8 for the other participating breeds. During the first seven years on test at the Lakeland College Bull Test Station at Vermilion, Alberta the bulls showed an average of 7.1 lbs. of feed per lb. of gain compared to 7.3 for the other breeds. It would be fair to say that the tests indicate Speckle Park to be the middle of the pack when it comes to feed conversion.