Saturday, September 14, 2013

Runaway Livestock, & Showing the House

Well I skipped a week or two, but things were crazy around here and I am just getting back in the drivers seat after some livestock chaos. We had cattle get out three times in five days a week ago. That resulted in hours of work to recover each time. The first time they got out, they jumped a electric temperary fence that is serving as my boundary fence in that area. I got a call on Christmas Day last year from the neighboring landowner that he wanted to tear out the fence and cleanup the trees in the fence row. The fence was not great, but it would hold cattle. I agreed to having the section of fence cleared as long as the ground was left smooth so I could put a new fence on it, because I do not really have equipment to move dirt, other then a shovel. Let us just say that the fence row is anything but smooth, so I did not build fence there this spring. A gorge or channel was dug between our properties that has made it so I have no place to even put some of the posts on my property line.

Center of the Shot, Cow and Calf Return After Adventures Off-property

Anyway, the whole thing is a mess and my cattle, tired of warm-season grass pastures, decided corn and brushy pasture looked better. After tasting corn, they wanted to go back, so they blew out an old wooden gate from their new paddock to get get out the second time. Then they found a spot in the fence where a different neighbor cleared out brush along the fence, pushed the fence down, and put up a tree stand for deer hunting. After collecting all of my cattle for the last time, I was short one very pregnant cow. You guessed it, she had a calf. I tried many times to find them, but came up short or could only find the mother. Early this week, almost a week after she went missing, I walked her and the calf home. They joined the other two mothers who calved in the past week. This brings us, counting all of the calves & mothers, to 22 head now. That is a lot of mouths to feed.

All of this was going on amongst a backdrop of maintaining the rest of the farm and trying to get the place in show able condition. It has been exhausting and quit frustrating at times. We traded out our energizer from the Speedrite 2000 to the Kube 4000 and fences seem to have much more bite then they have had for a while. The Speedrite is a better energizer for wet conditions and the Kube is much better in dry conditions. We also stopped using the poly line as much with the cattle and have instead switched to net. I wanted them to herd to have a couple reasons to respect electricity and break them of the escaping habit.

Poultry are doing well and made it through the heat of last week. Broilers are growing rapidly even though the pastures are in terrible condition. They came through the heat well and they appear to be growing quite a bit faster since it has cooled off. Turkeys are starting to really grow quickly. All of them are eating a lot right now, this means a lot of money is getting dropped on feed. They will all go into the locker in early October, which will make my like much easier.

Broilers in what was the Morning Heat

Turkeys Seeking Shade

Janice and I have been working like crazy to get and then keep the house clean. We had the realtors walkthrough the house early this week, and we had a showing this morning. We will just have to see what happens. I would like to get this place sold sooner then later so we can move in late November after turkey distribution is behind us. We shall see what happens, stay tuned.


Living room


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