Pride, passion evident for South Devon cattle breed

Written by Terri Huxley

Leonard and Elsie Beddoes

Elsie and Leonard Beddoes of Diamond M Ranching have enjoyed the vast prairie lifestyle since 1992 when they settled near Wardlow, Alta.

The prospect of becoming cattle producers was always a dream for Elsie as she returned to her roots after years away intertwined in the urban sprawl.

One day in 1998, the couple was introduced to the docile creatures by Elsie’s father which sparked a life-long appreciation for the unique South Devon breed.

This type of cattle originates from England. What makes this style of cattle different from others is a number of indicators including its smaller weight, quick rate of gain, mild temperament, longer average lifespans, high carcass yield, larger pelvic floors for easy calving and are mostly polled.

What the Beddoes found was that they liked the breed so much they wanted to purchase some.

Coming up 2021-born Yearling Bulls. ECA Review/Diamond M Ranching

After discovering they are hard to come by in this part of the world they decided once they had some they would start a herd.

Now, 24 years later, with a strict culling process based on temperament, the family has garnered Western Canadian attention from prospect buyers by selling yearlings and two-year-olds and the latest trend in bred-heifer sales.

Many have become repeat customers over time.

Copper 508C is the star bull Diamond M Ranching have semen drawn from and exported internationally. ECA Review/Diamond M Ranching

They have also sold bull semen all over the world including to buyers in New Zealand, Australia and the United States.

Leonard noted they also help feed for a local outfit that has a two-times-a-day feed schedule. 

“We don’t have holidays, this is our focus. It’s dedication and pretty religious.”

“We love the quietness and appreciate what we have,” added Elsie. “It’s a great lifestyle and great place to live.”

Diamond M Ranch is a member of the Canadian South Devon Association as well as the North American South Devon Association.

The couple has been partners with Ralph and Betty McGregor of McGregor Stock Farm from Iron River, Alta. for many years where they have had South Devons as long as Beddoes have.

The couple shared that the breed is great to work with, especially with grandchildren helping.


Editors note: We have selected our Breeder’s section features based on a number of factors but the main one being longevity of advertising with the ECA Review in this, our 31st annual year, and then locality. We appreciate all of our advertisers but wanted to give a special highlight to those who have been with us since the beginning of this valuable feature section!


Terri Huxley

ECA Review

About the author

Terri Huxley

Terri grew up on a grain farm near Drumheller, Alberta with an eye for the beautiful and uncharted. Living in such a unique and diverse area has helped her become the photographer and reporter she is today.

Coming from the East Central region getting this newspaper on her dinner table growing up, it helped her understand the community she now serves.

In May 2019, Terri was awarded Alberta Weekly Newspaper Association (AWNA) Canada's Energy Citizens Photographic Awards Sports Action – First Place as well as first for the same sports action image nationally with the Canadian Community Newspaper Association (CCNA). Fast forward to 2020, she has won second in the same category for the AWNA.