Monday, April 29, 2013

Off to see the cows...

Saturday we turned the bulls out with the cows. They were pretty good boys. No fighting, no posturing, no pushing and shoving. They just headed to the barn, up they alley and out the door. Took them all the way to the cows. That afternoon, they were all spread out threw the girls. We try to put one bull to 25 cows. No need having to many bulls. They can be a pain in the butt!
Bandit making sure the boys behave.

I wonder what they are talking about? Who's the handsomest?

Group huddle. Get moving guys! You've got business to take care of......

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Wild Flowers

Some smaller wild flowers are starting to pop up in the pastures. I just love to ride through the wild flowers. They are so pretty and unique. I've tried to plant some in the yard, but they never grow.
Here are some flowers..

I call these 'stink daisies'. They grow up underneath the bluffs. The cows don't like them, but the horses do.

This is vetch. It grows here and there on most of the ranch. But in the Turkslees pasture it covers the whole thing. Cows LOVE vetch. It's very very high in protein. It's considered a legume. The horses like it too.

This is a nasty nasty flower. It's Lupine. It also comes in purple. When a cow eats it at the flower stage, it can cause them to have a crippled calf. It only effects them in the first 4 months of pregnancy. When the bloom is spent and the seeds have fallen, usually in August, the cows can then eat the plant. There is a bug that eats this plant also and kills the bloom. The bug is an iridescent blister beetle. This flower is also very high in protein. It grows sporadic around the ranch. Where its highly concentrated, we move the cows out of that pasture.

A sea of wild flowers.

These are just wild daisies that grow in very dry hot conditions.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Who's 'smiling' now?

We turned the angus bulls out with heifers today, in hopes of a January 30th due date for them. We will leave the bulls in with the heifers for 32 days. Then the angus bulls get put in with the cows.

We will turn the hereford bulls out with the cows on Saturday, in hopes of a February 3rd due date. We leave the bulls in the cows for 62 days.

We put the angus bulls in with the heifers because they (the bulls) have smaller babies for the heifers. Pulling calves or having to do a c-section is not fun.

A few of the boys waiting to go see the heifers.

Some of the heifers, waiting for the boys. Heifers are such curious creatures. I was on my horse, and they follow you instead of going away from you. They just hustled right up to me and sniffed my horse like who are you and what are you doing here?

More heifers.


Whats so funny? Looks like he's laughing.....

Friday, April 19, 2013

Branding part 2. And the Twins.

We branded the Grannies and younger cows babies the other day. All went well. We are going to brand again on Saturday. Then we'll have one group left to do! Then the Bulls get turned out. The bulls are pretty sure they can go with the cows now! We've put 3 back in the last 2 days! UGH!
                       And a special picture of an awesome mama cow with her twins!

MOOOOOO - Some of the babies waiting in the pens.

My child the calf pusher. He loads 8 calves per pen. Then brings them to the chute, and one at a time pushes them in to the chute. Good job for a Psychology student who's going to graduate with honors this June!!

A granny waiting in the barn for her calf.

Here she is again. Sneaking closer to have a look. Baby is in the chute, tipped on his side, so he can get his ears done, dehorned, shots, branded and castrated. Takes 1 minute to do each calf.

Another perfect brand. We use an electric iron.

Mama and her twins. We brought her in from the high heavens. She was having some issues. So , we got her home, doctored her and 2 days later she had a calf. The next morning she had 2! And is taking care of them both! Very unusual for a range cow when they are out on the range.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Busy Busy.

We started the branding season today with heifers and their babies. I wish I had more 'action' pictures, but I am either in the saddle, or behind the iron! Everything went very smooth. Except "that one calf" that escaped TWICE under the chute! Talk about "calf dogging"! LOL! Second time he got away, and the horses had to go get him! Little stinker! The weather was not very cooperative. No rain or anything, just WINDY! Sorting pairs was kinda trying. But we got 'er done. Thank goodness we have a nice huge barn to work in.

We're gonna work cows today? ALRIGHT! My main man, Leo. The rest of the guys in the back ground. L to R. Magnum, Feathers, Junior and Jack.

Mamas waiting for their babies.

Freshly branded.

Moving the mamas and babies to the meadows, so they can heal up.

To the meadow we go.

And we're done for today.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Way down there.

Yep, that's where we live! In the middle of no where. 3 miles to the mail box! Closest neighbor? 3 1/2 miles away! The barn where everything happens? 2 1/2 miles away. The parents? 5 miles away. Nearest shopping? 60 miles to the west, or 70 miles to the east. The little town of Ritzville? 20 miles away. Couldn't ask for a better place to hang my spurs. :)

Friday, April 5, 2013

Time to start stamping!

The grass is up and so is the weather. The babes are getting big! Time to start putting the stamp on them and all their vaccines. Going to start with  the first calf heifers. Their babies are 2 1/2 to 3 months old now. It's best to give the babies their vaccines after 8 weeks old. They have all mama's anti bodies in their system when they are born and sip that first gulp of milk. Then the anti bodies wear away and they need their own immune system to grow, grow, grow!