Tag Archives: angussource

Getting the Calves Ready for Sale

I’m in transition in between my office job and the Ranch, I’ve had to take a few days off to help my Parents get our calves ready to sell. This is a huge deal to us because this is our family’s one paycheck a year. Our very way of life depends on these calves. We are very, very, proud of our calf crop and work hard to market them the best we can.

This is what a online cattle sale catalogue looks like (click here and it will take you to the video)

This is what an online cattle sale catalogue looks like.

Because we raise Angus cattle, we are members of the Angus Association this enables us to enroll in a program called AngusSource. This program is a value added marketing tool for us because it verifies the sires (Dads) of our cattle and where/where our calves were born. In addition the people working there are wonderful, so very helpful and knowledgeable! If you want to see what an online cattle sale looks like go here.

The view from the house. We're on top of a hill with a beautiful view of the valley below.

The view from the house. We’re on top of a hill with a beautiful view of the valley below.

Since I am still working in town and the bunk house had some water damage from this winter I have to commute to the summer ranch. This means I get up before daylight and drive an hour and a half up a very curvy and scary road, work all day, then drive home so I can go to work the next day. It’s a lot of work and I am exhausted, but it’s also totally worth it to work on the Ranch!

We start by gathering the calves from their field.

We start by gathering the calves from their field.

I’ve been bringing my dog Hoot with me to Ranch work. She has been a pretty, pretty, princess dog up until this point. She really hasn’t taken a lot of interest in being a ranch dog. She would rather be loved on or skateboard with me. But since I am going to be working full-time on the Ranch, I decided she needed to learn. Luckily for me she agreed, and has decided she wants nothing more than to work cattle and be with me. When we are working she always has an eye on me and refuses to be without me (in fact she flat-out screams when she is separated). The old cowboy adage “if you get to thinking you’re a person of some influence, try ordering somebody else’s dog around” rings true with Hoot dog, she won’t even acknowledge my Dad when she is on the job.

Cowdog Hoot. We have a little fine-tuning to do, but I have myself a pretty awesome little dog here.

Cowdog Hoot. We have a little fine-tuning to do, but I have myself a pretty awesome little dog here.

Cutting 10 head out at a time to be weighed.

Cutting 10 head out at a time to be weighed.

Once we gather the calves from the field, we weigh them. We do this to make sure the weight we have in the sale catalogue is right. If our cattle don’t adhere to the weight we have them listed as, we will take a financial hit (NOT GOOD).

This is our scale house. I'm going to write a blog about it later this summer because it has a very interesting story.

This is our scale house. I’m going to write a blog about it later this summer because it has a very interesting story.

Mr. Steer Calf

Mr. Steer Calf being weighed.

The HiHog sweep and alley. This thing rocks so hard! After I met Dr. Grandin we installed these on all the ranches. It makes working cattle a dream.

The HiHog sweep and alley. This thing rocks so hard! After I met Dr. Grandin we installed these on all the ranches. It makes working cattle a dream.

After the animals are weighed we ear tag them. An ear tag is basically a cow earring. It doesn’t hurt them and it is a great visual way to be able to identify them. We also use ear tags if we had a sick animal and had to give them antibiotics, that way we know not to sell them with our natural herd.

A steer getting his ear pierced.

A steer getting his ear pierced.

Our new corral makes it almost too easy to work cattle, two or three people is all we really need now. It’s dreamy. Luckily we had some good help, thank you Travis for coming out to help! And MAJOR thank you to your wife, Rachel for making us lunch last week!

Oh did I mention that in the middle of all this work I managed to lock my keys in my truck (this is very much a typical Megan thing)? I did! The nice insurance man had to drive an hour to open my truck for me? I felt like a prize idiot.

Oh did I mention that in the middle of all this work I managed to lock my keys in my truck (this is very much a typical Megan thing)? I did! The nice insurance man had to drive an hour to open my truck for me? I felt like a prize idiot.

I owe my Mom BIG time for saving my butt with the locking my keys in the truck thing! If she wouldn’t have made some phone calls I would have had to drive my Dad’s big ass, not fun to drive truck, 2 hours to the valley and 2 hours back up to the mountains AND then drive my truck home. Talk about not fun!!! THANK YOU again Mom!

It feels so wonderful to be working on the Ranch again. I’m pretty sure this is going to be one of the best summers I’ve had in a while! Cows, horses, and hay! Bring it on!

2 Comments

Filed under Ag, agriculture, animals, Beef, family, photos, Ranch life, Uncategorized