sitting here reading the spring an fall calving season q has me to thinking.how meny cows to a bull do yall run.im old school an calve year round.so we run 1 bull to 60 or 70 cows.an they calve year round.
We run 4 bulls: 2 juniors, 2 mature. Each bull gets between 4 and 10 females, depending on breeding objectives, etc. Each bull has his own pasture. Depending on what calf crop looks like each year, we will mix and match pairings as needed. 1st calf heifers always get junior bulls for 1st calf due to bull's size.
That's a lot of work for a bull (60-70 cows) but obviously he gets it done. In your case, the year round calving helps him, I reckon. I run 1 bull with 30 cows. If I get to 35-40 I'd probably want to run 2 but I try to have a sixty day calving season so the breeding needs to get done relatively quickly. I do have a neighbor that runs 1 bull with 38-40 cows with a planned 60 day season - no big problems. I know others that run with about a 20-1 ratio in case one of the bulls goes bad.
I used to only allow 1 breeding age male on the farm, and he easily handled 50 head of cows in 60 days - my husband :lol: Now, as of last year, we ran 1 bull on them for 3 weeks, after AI'ing for 6 weeks. Got 5 bred to him. 1 born last week, 4 due this weekend & we're done.
Last year I pushed a fifteen month old bull a little 25-1; only had one open heifer and one late cow. Cow was late due to very indifferent size and heifer's only ran with the bull for sixty day befor they got moved to a new pasture, due to her age and frame size I really don't think she was cycleing yet. I ran them on 250 acre pasture. Minuse the two above had pretty tight group out of them. I think there is a lot of variable to a persons ratio. If you were run on 1000 acre dry land pastures and the bull were well conditioned (as over conditioned bull always sell for more) I wouldn't go over 20-1. If your on a smaller pasture like 200 less and the bull are athletic ( key word: Athletic) you could push that number up quite a bit. If your bulls go into the season healthy and ATHLETIC; they have good forage through breeding season than I believe you can up ratio's, over traditional thinking. When you take those great lookin, over conditioned bulls; that gained 4 lbs a day in a feedlot at a bunk then turn them out with 20-30 cows on average pasture you generally get the melt down affect. Some might call me crazy but this year I'm gonna turn that same bull out with about 50 cow's. He'll be on a 70 acre pasture for about a month then turned out to a 280 acre pasture. Do I plan on a sixty day calvin season; NO. I have got ahold of some cows this winter that were around 45 days out of my calving season. I hope to bump a few of them naturally but I dought tomany of them will. I could bump them with CIDR's but I'm not rich. I'll let ya know next calvin season how thing went if I'm still calvin in april. :lol2:
Two mature bulls split up 30+ cows/heifers in the spring and 20+ in the fall. We don't work them hard because we have experienced basically every bad wreck you can get with a bull...and the value of a decent backup bull is priceless. 30 cows to a mature bull on a big parcel is a good ratio. Bull covers them good and keeps himself in good flesh. :cowboy:
I run a yearling on about 10 to 15 heifers. Then when they're two year oldl, I put them with 25 or so mature cows. That way if something goes wrong I can usually catch it in time to correct the problem. A good example is this year. I had a three year old with 27 head and noticed some coming back in heat. When the third cycle started, I turned in another bull. The first bull bred eight of them in the first week, and no more. I am just now starting on the second calving season. The three year old tested ok, but something happened. I don't know how you would know what was happining if he ran with sixty or seventy head . gs