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Fred Chesterley (Llanfair's Dexters)
2006

By Carol Davidson

Most people knew Fred as a teacher and school trustee, but his heart was in the land. He kept rare breeds of chickens, geese, sheep, and, of course, his beloved Dexters.

It was Fred who first raised the question of temperment in Dexters, promoting the selection away from any questionable animals where handling couldn't account for aggression; and talked of the "implied" warranties the association promoted, and the risks of breaching them. He never stopped arguing for better quality control.

He had the vision to see that while horns may be attactive to some, given the level of livestock experience with most Dexter owners, and the trauma and expense of dehorning, a polled version could be of immense interest. On this premise, he arranged to have a superior polled bull from the most reliable of the four polled lines in England collected, and semen imported into the U.S.

A member of the ADCA for 23 years, several years ago he received recognition for his contributions to the breed and the ADCA by the Board awarding him an Honorary Membership. Fred was a mentor to many Dexter owners in the Pacific Northwest, served as a Director of the ADCA for two terms, and took seriously his role of representing his membership.

For years, Fred subscribed to an overseas evaluation system, and had his animals classified to ensure that his breeding program moved his herd forward. Through that breeding program, his herd, Llanfair, produced some of the very best Dexters in North America, providing seedstock for prominent breeders such as Wes Patton and John Potter, both of whom have used his lines extensively to build their own herds.

Fred was, and to the day he died remained, a man of honor.

 


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