Tomorrow is one of those days I really look forward to having. We are hoping to get to spray for flies - UUUGGGHHH! They are awful right now and I know it affects the performance of the cows and calves. We are also planning to pull blood to test cows for pregnancy. Using the blood pregnancy test helps us make decisions about our herd. If a cow is "open" or not bred, we know she will need to be taken to the sale. The bulls (see note about these guys!) have been with the cows since the first of May. If a cow is not bred by now, she is using forage and water without being productive, meaning growing a calf. If she's not productive, she does not stay. For some that may seem harsh but this is a business and has to be run as a business. With limited resources and a limited budget, those that do not produce do not stay.
I have said this before but I love this adventure! It is by far the best of anything we have done and though the work may be hard sometimes and it always seems to be hot and humid, I would not trade it. Through the ranch, our children and grandchildren are able to see an example of pulling together and working together (not always peacefully but hopefully always pulling in the same direction). In this day of entitlement and the desire for the reward without the work, I think it is important they see the right way to live and work.
Back to the cows - in working the cows we are hoping to evaluate calves and also get some pictures for marketing. The calves this year are fairly uniform and are a great size. Our Angus bulls came from Bradley 3 Ranch and they are awesome!!! We have Brangus cows that were bred with our bulls and they produced great calves. The cows had no trouble with delivery as the calves are not large at birth. They do grow well though! Many of the calves at 6 months are about 2/3 the height of the cows. We could not be happier with the calves! Our bulls - Hank and Drover have great genes. Contact James or Mary Lou Henderson for information on their bulls. You will be pleased with your results!
We are considering some different options for our operation as we move forward. Stay tuned as I will be starting a brand new learning curve if we decide to take a different approach. Never too old to learn something new!