Working Cattle on a Windy Day

Yesterday was windy.  Really windy.  It tends to be windy here in this part of Missouri, but yesterday was a very windy day and we were working calves.  Now we work cattle in all kinds of weather, but prefer to  work them on a “nice” day.  It is better for the calves and people involved.  The morning started out overcast with a chance of rain, but was to clear off after lunch.  So Gpa decided to go ahead and get started and see how far we got.

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The first group we worked was down at our house.  The calves are coming along really good.  These are a few of the bull calves that are pushing 500 pounds or better.  Yes, they are this big and still on their Mama’s.  This is why we were running them though the working chute.  They needed their “booster” shots so that they will be ready to be taken off their mama’s in three weeks.  This is called weaning.  If you keep up with other bloggers, then you may see that others are calving right now.  It is up to each individual operation/farm on when they want to calve.  Typically you calve in the spring or the fall.  We choose to calve in the fall and wean in the spring.    A Kansas Farm Mom is finishing up calving and will then wean in the fall.

The wind yesterday did help to continue to dry things out so things were not as muddy, but the calves were anxious yesterday and it showed.  We had a little trouble sorting and even brought one mama cow back into the pen so that her heifer calf could follow her into the alley and to the chute.  This worked well and the calf got her shots.  The calves have been thought the chute once, so this is all still pretty new to them, but is something that needs to be done so that they are healthy.

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After lunch we headed up to the “Red” barn to work the biggest group of calves.  I know this picture does not show a red barn, but trust me it really is.  I love old barns!  This one is one of my favorites.  The mama’s are coming back out of the barn from being sorted off from their calves.  Here it was even windier, but the sun was shinning, so that helped.

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I just liked this picture and decided to include it.

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Gpa is looking in his shirt pocket for his notebook that he carries with him every where.  It has a record of when all the calves were born and what he will be planting and where.  Does your farmer do the same thing?  Gpa does have a cell phone and an Ipad, but I don’t believe we will be seeing him with an electronic planner or smart phone, live ever.

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As we were putting the last calves through the chute, we realized that we were missing five calves.  All of the cows came up, so we assumed that the calves were all there too.  My husband and our nephew, who is on spring break, went to look for them.  While waiting I took a few pictures of the cows and calves.  I love this photographer, Legacy Livestock Imaging.  Heidi’s work is wonderful!  I don’t even try to pretend to take pictures like she does, but she has inspired me to try to capture more of the spirit of the animals.

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Finally, the calves were found!  Two mama’s “volunteered” to go and help look for them so they were then easy to bring to the barn and the rest of the herd.  Seth and my nephew Drew are bringing up the rear there on the Gator.  Not for sure what happened, but it could have been that they slipped under the electric fence or that do to the wind, they did not hear Gpa calling for them.  *The cows know the call to come and the sound of the tractor when it is bringing them more hay.  The calves usually listen to their mama’s.

In all it was a pretty good day working calves.  Wind and all.  Now, who is going to come in three weeks to help with the weaning?

Blessings to you and Happy National Agriculture Day,

Laurie – Country Link

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9 comments on “Working Cattle on a Windy Day

  1. You have really great picture Laurie! We calve in both the spring and the fall – probably not the smartest but it’s the tradition. We need to get our fall calves up and get them worked too, but it’s probably not going to happen this week or the next since my gilts will be farrowing soon. Maybe my husband and father-in-law will surprise me and do it by themselves!

    • Gah – *pictures* not picture. Long week, and it’s only Tuesday.

      • I know what you mean Jamie! It is going to be a good, but LONG week here. That is a lot to get done calving in both the spring and the fall. When Gpa first started with the cattle, I think he did spring calving, but did not enjoy the late nights and early mornings in the snow. Keep us informed on your gilts! Hope that all goes well!

  2. Great post, as always, and BTW my Farmer carries a very similar notebook, its a frantic time when that little jewel gets misplaced……… 🙂 KH

    • It is like a piece of them. Like how every morning they put on their belt and the pliers holder and now the cell phone holder too. That little book goes in the pocket and stays there until they are in for the night. Does your Farmer keep them too? To look back on.

  3. Julie says:

    Great display of words & photos! Thanks for sharing!

  4. […] working cattle on Monday I had a chance to take some pictures of the cattle and the barn where we were working […]

  5. […] just one of the many things that happen year round on our farm.  The process of breeding, calving, weaning and the final step selling is one that takes everyone working together to make the […]

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