As I write this it’s 99 degrees outside with only a trace of rain in the past month. However, the calendar and long-range forecast says that the summer heat will soon give way to some cooler temps and wetter weather as we move toward fall.
At our ranch, we’re completing some pre-weaning shots for calves to be weaned this fall and soon we’ll be planting some summer/winter cover crops so we’ll have our ‘standing hay’ for our cattle in January and February. While our pastures are in excellent shape from the rainfall received to date, we do have a few coastal pastures to be fertilized so we can graze those until January as well as some perennial Fescue pastures that provide grazing through the winter for our fall calving pairs. And of course, we’ll pray for some timely rains, late frosts, and no army worms!
We are keeping a close eye on forage quality to see if any protein supplement is needed. Based on our initial tests in August, we were trending below average for Crude Protein levels at our ranch. We suspect this is due to the large amount of forage produced in late spring and early summer from the many blessings of rainfall received, and this older forage has declined in feed value as it matured. If our prayers are answered, then we’ll get some late summer rains to freshen it up just enough to get by.
I’m always excited to see our genetic progress each calving season, and the best way to measure that is by looking at the calves by our 1st calf heifers. Around mid-September, we’ll start to see calves from those gals. Then around October 1st, we’ll start to see calves from our mature cows, and I’m especially excited to see the ET (Embryo Transfer) calves that come from our most Legendary cows. These guys and gals will be the future seedstock for our herd and many of our customers. I’ll be sleeping easy since we rarely experience calving problems with our heifers or cows.
As we move into October, we’ll start to wean and vaccinate calves and we’ll be eager to see how those 1st calf heifers from the spring performed weaning their first calf. At the same time we wean calves, we’ll vaccinate and pregnancy test the cows with ultrasound. I’m always anxious to see the conception % and how early the cows are bred in our 60-day breeding season since we’re always trying to tighten that window down further and have made great progress towards this. Based on the exceptional condition of our pastures and cattle, I have very high expectations this year that we’ll have a low percentage of open cows and a high percentage of cows calving in the first 30 days.
Finally, we’re planning an event for mid to late October at the ranch. We want to give our customers an opportunity to get an in-depth look at our program and provide them valuable information they can use to generate more profits back home. Stay tuned for more information as plans get finalized for this.
Fall is always a busy and exciting season at Legends. As you look forward to the fall season and beyond to a new decade, what goals and objectives do you have for your operation?
Be sure to sign up for our emails and watch our Facebook page for additional information about Legends Cattle Company, as well as future blogs and the October event at the ranch. All are welcome, and we hope to see you there!