From heifers to dairy goats, teens across Canada are herding to Agribition this week to compete in livestock judging.
The Canadian National 4-H and Youth Judging Competition was underway Monday morning. It saw a few dozen young competitors across the country getting judged on judging different species of livestock and examining each animal’s market qualities.
Like most of his fellow competitors, Asquith’s Dayne Whelan has been learning to judge animals since he joined 4-H as a small child.
“I was just a little junior,” laughed Whelan. “From day one, we were taught how to judge going in so we could show.”
With 11 years experience under his belt buckle, the 18-year-old said it’s high caliber competitions like this one at Agribition that help diversify young judges, like himself.
“I just love that everyone has different opinions. I just love hearing what everyone else has to say and what they think,” he explained.
The University of Saskatchewan animal science student added that he and his team plan to travel across Canada to better their judging skills and represent the province.
Carla Borsa, chair of the livestock file at Agribition, said it’s typical that teens train their whole life for the opportunity to compete at this stage.
“Contestants have been doing this since they were seven or eight years old, so by the time they’re this level, they’re pretty keen and they know what they’re doing,” she said. “It’s really great to watch them go through the classes and present their reasons.”
Youth from the Maritimes all the way to the west coast have gathered in Regina to test their expertise and beef up their judging resume this year.
The winner of the Canadian National 4-H and Youth Judging Competition goes on to be one of the panel judges at Agribition’s First Lady Classic Heifer Show on Tuesday.