Livestock judging a family affair

MERCEDES — It’s a family tradition for many of the participants in the Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show.

Livestock show judge Joe Behrens, 67, and his family know all about it. He operates a cattle business in Voca, Texas. And he’s judged many livestock shows over the years, just as his father had.

Behrens said his father judged animals at the livestock show in Mercedes 30 years ago.

“I bet you, me and my daddy are the only father and son to judge here,” Behrens said.

He knew what he was looking for in the cattle, too.

Behrens zeroed in on the cow’s foundation to predict if it’s going to produce good cattle in the future.

“They got to have body and muscle,” Behrens said. “If they don’t have muscle they don’t sell.”

For the rest of this story and many other EXTRAS, go to our premium site,

Subscribe to it for only $6.99 per month or purchase a print subscription and receive the online version free, which includes an electronic version of the full newspaper and extra photo galleries, links and other information you can’t find anywhere else.