Kansas native Mark Gardiner is a major success story in genetic bull breeding. That's actually an understatement.

Since 1987, the Gardiner Angus Ranch (GAR) in southwest Kansas has been perfecting its embryo transfer program, and currently serves as one of the most successful pedigree bull breeding ranches in the country.

But prior to that, the GAR was one of the pioneering developers of database selection for cattle breeding. Currently, the GAR breeds over 1,500 female head of cattle, all of which, whether registered or commercial Angus, according to GAR's own website, “are settled by either embryo transfer or artificial insemination within a 60-day breeding season, without the use of clean-up bulls. During calving season at GAR, more than 1,000 baby calves will hit the ground within a 45-day period.”

Simply put, the Gardiners are giants in the American beef industry. On the GAR website, interested parties can browse newly sired bulls, see their pictures and examine their data. Stats such as when the bull was calved, its beef quality, and what its genetic grade is are available on each sired bull like the back of a baseball card.

It's safe to say that the Gardiner's know their business. On Wednesday night, Nov. 20, Mark Gardiner gave a talk at the Alley House behind Connie's Bookkeeping in Graham. Over 50 area cattlemen and others interested in the beef industry came to hear the cattle business luminary discuss his history and present day approach to a profession that has been coursing through his family's veins for generations.

Read the entire story in this weekend's edition of The Graham Leader.