Cow prices

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Dave

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Well that slight down turn in cow prices is over. This week I saw kill cows bring $0.86. Yesterday at a big bred cow sale (850 head) those kill prices kept the bottom up on the market. I paid $1,121 average for 14 broken mouth cows. Last year I averaged $850. I always want to buy those BM cows for a little over kill price. Preferably one bid over kill. $1,121 for cows averaging 1,259 pounds works out to 89 cents so a little over the top kill price..... But I watched smooth mouth cows weighing 1,250 and 7 months bred sell for $1,400+. They have more money or a better crystal ball than I do. Good solid mouth cows were $1,700-1,800. Top bred heifers in that same range.
 
Well that slight down turn in cow prices is over. This week I saw kill cows bring $0.86. Yesterday at a big bred cow sale (850 head) those kill prices kept the bottom up on the market. I paid $1,121 average for 14 broken mouth cows. Last year I averaged $850. I always want to buy those BM cows for a little over kill price. Preferably one bid over kill. $1,121 for cows averaging 1,259 pounds works out to 89 cents so a little over the top kill price..... But I watched smooth mouth cows weighing 1,250 and 7 months bred sell for $1,400+. They have more money or a better crystal ball than I do. Good solid mouth cows were $1,700-1,800. Top bred heifers in that same range.
If you're willing to spare a sec I have some questions about your methodology for this.
 
They were one and done broken mouth cows. But yes, I should have bought more they paid like a slot machine.
Last spring I bought a couple dozen full mouth cows for B. They cost less than BM cows do this year.
I wasn't worried about you…. You can look after yourself quite well! 😂😂😂😂

Was thinking about my bank account! 😉
 
To start, you only buy breds, right?
Yes I buy bred cows. Right now I am only buying those that are 7 or 8 months bred. I want February/March calves. I just buy broken mouth cows not smooth mouth. I have bought smooth mouth cows in the past. I always figured on about a 5% death loss. I got to looking at that and it turned out that most of the death loss was from those smooth mouth cows. I could have bought a bunch of smooth mouth cows yesterday but I passed on them. I also passed on a lot of 6 month bred cows. They will calf in April which results is a smaller calf.
 
What's your full one and done? 3 month calf? Six month?
Cows get shipped direct to the plant in the middle of August. After that the kill cow market begins to slip. Getting top dollar for the kill cows is a big part of making this work. Calves are what ever age they are when the cows get shipped. A calf born the first of February is 6 1/2 months old. A calf born the end of March is 4 1/2 months old. That is why I don't want April calves. Calves are held in a corral for 4 or 5 days until they quit bawling. Then they are turned out on grass regrowth in irrigated meadows. They get rotated through those fields until some time in late October when the grazing runs out.
 
Cows get shipped direct to the plant in the middle of August. After that the kill cow market begins to slip. Getting top dollar for the kill cows is a big part of making this work. Calves are what ever age they are when the cows get shipped. A calf born the first of February is 6 1/2 months old. A calf born the end of March is 4 1/2 months old. That is why I don't want April calves. Calves are held in a corral for 4 or 5 days until they quit bawling. Then they are turned out on grass regrowth in irrigated meadows. They get rotated through those fields until some time in late October when the grazing runs out.
Okay, I see now. Then you sell off the calves and do it up again, bit of a break in between. Nice.
 
Okay, I see now. Then you sell off the calves and do it up again, bit of a break in between. Nice.
Yep, it saves several months of winter feed that would happen on a full time cow/calf operation. This year 2 1/2 months of hay. Maybe 3 months of feed by the time I get them all put together. That is well over a ton of hay. This year grass hay is over $200 a ton. $200 can easily be the difference between being in the red or in the black.
 
Yep, it saves several months of winter feed that would happen on a full time cow/calf operation. This year 2 1/2 months of hay. Maybe 3 months of feed by the time I get them all put together. That is well over a ton of hay. This year grass hay is over $200 a ton. $200 can easily be the difference between being in the red or in the black.
That tracks. Always had wondered what the more detailed aspects of your one and dones were. Y'all get the giant squares up there, right?
 
That tracks. Always had wondered what the more detailed aspects of your one and dones were. Y'all get the giant squares up there, right?
Yes it is 3x4x8 bales. You can get the 4x4x8 but they are a pain to work with. I got some 3x3x8 bales of alfalfa from the steer calves out here. It works for them and their feed program. The few round bales around here are for use by the guy who made them. Almost never see round bales for sale.
 
For cows, it's almost always rounds down here. That us, for those who hay very much at all. I think squares are more efficient, personally.
It is a lot easier to feed a portion of a bale per day and have an idea on how much you are feeding. For instance right now there is 12 cows in the field. They have been getting a third of a bale a day. That is a touch more than I normally feed but they have been getting top bales so there is some waste. Once I get the 14 cows in the corral worked there will be 26 in the field. I will give them 2/3 of a bale a day. I put 2 bales on edge on the flat bed. Put the pickup in 4 low and as it idles across the field I flake off the appropriate amount of hay. It is spread out so everyone gets to eat and I feed just what they will clean up in a day.
 

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