It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory.

— W. Edwards Deming

When your ratio of money, feed, and cattle changes, you need to adjust your management to meet that change. Thursday afternoon a fire took out about 15 acres (out of 80 acres) of our pasture and browse.Corner of Farm
Because we are in a severe drought with no signs of letting up (though it might rain today!), that meant we needed to adjust the other two values in our equation. This morning we loaded up 5 cows/calves and hauled them to the auction. We will continue to haul animals to the auction BEFORE we run out of feed and/or money. We can always buy more cattle when it starts to rain again (and it will . . . someday . . .), but we won’t spend ourselves out of feed or money just to try and keep some cattle around.


The gather, sort, and load just took 32 minutes of low-stress (on us and the cattle) stockmanship.

One Response

  1. As might happen sometimes, (though usually it goes the other way!) it rained later in the day after we hauled those cattle to the sale, and it’s rained quite a bit since then. Our fescue shot up, and even the grass in the burned areas grew like crazy. Before the frost, our Johnson grass grew a huge amount of forage which we had a chance to utilize before it died back. So, we are stock-piling fescue and waiting to see how the winter unfolds. We might be in a position to buy some undervalued animals a little later in the winter, because we cut back on our stock in time to grow a lot of winter pasture! This is why a “plan” doesn’t always work, because mother nature doesn’t always read and go along with the plan!

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