At this point I don't know what I am going to do. The light heifer market is still too strong to be real attractive. I might do the one and done cows and hold off buying until later. Hay cost is up so just hold off until later in buying figuring on the same total budget on hay. Hay is looking to be 10 cents a pound instead of the 6 cents it was last winter. If winter feed cost increase by $75-$100 just pay that much less per cow? What is the kill market going to be mid winter on those older cows? With hay being expensive and scarce will older cows come in thin. Even mid age thin cows? Still too many variables. My crystal ball is foggy today.Glad there is surplus grass in Texas, but even with these "good" prices, ranchers in the north will lose money over wintering beef cows. I don't think losing money is "good." Hay stocks and soil moisture will both be very low next spring, so no reason to think the 2022 scenarios will be different.
Overwintering (smaller) heifers could show a profit with some appreciation in bred prices. Are you going to double down on heifers Dave, or are one and done cows too attractive?
That’s the way I’ve been operating a long time. Bought some breeding age heifers back in 2014, but it’s been decent looking cows needing grass since.Buying cows later sounds like a good plan. Buying middle aged cows gives you more marketing options.
Stockers make good money this summer - - if you had the grass. I sold mine in May since I knew I would not.
I know an older guy who usually had a sacrificial herd along with his keeper cows. He said one and done cows made better money then stockers most years. I think the main issue is that stockers or bred heifers require more labor and management.