If you were starting a new herd from scratch..

Help Support CattleToday:

Bigfoot

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 16, 2012
Messages
13,281
Reaction score
603
Location
Kentucky
I cringe at the thought of starting over. If you want to get to 85-100 momma cows, your going to go through several head getting there. My experience is, for every 10 heifers you like, 5 or less end up actually in production 5-6 years down the road. Then you get to sort through the feet and udder issues. I actually would like to know, in 10 years time how many females you'd go through. I bet if you had some strict production goals in mind, you still wouldn't be where you wanted to be after 10 years.

Not said to discourage, just said as point to ponder

To answer the question:
I'd want super baldies, covered with a black sim bull............Currently have very few super baldies and using brangus bulls......Makes me wonder why I don't switch.
 

Rafter S

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 17, 2013
Messages
4,603
Reaction score
419
Location
Grimes County, TX
I wish everyone would put a location in their profile...
But, ...




Keep in mind, there is a HUGE disparity in the different geographical sections WITHIN Texas, and it changes as much going North to South on the Eastern side as it does going East to West all across Texas. "One size does not fit all" in this state. The piney woods generally gets lots more rain than the coastal bend area and coastal south Texas and certainly more than areas any where to the West.
Temps are much different as well and a few degrees either way in the average annual high/low temps can make a lot of difference especially when humidity is factored in. RafterS is only about 70 miles due West of me and his area is totally different than where I live.
I live on the southwest edge of the pineywoods, he lives on the grand prairie. There is a BIG difference, just as there is a big diff in where I live and where Brute lives and ranches.
There is a reason #17 (pineywoods) is colored green..and it is not just because it has pine trees on it.

View attachment 9305

I of course agree with you, but to be fair @Pineywoods230 did say in the first post of this thread that it was in east Texas.
 

Lee VanRoss

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 26, 2020
Messages
1,044
Reaction score
1,049
Bigfoot> Other than color, which is a matter of choice, I agree with your analogy. From my own experience I have found
the tighter you can cull in the beginning the quicker you will show a profit. In my example above I would definitely keep
every cow that had a bull calf in the first 30 days over anything calving in the 2nd 30 days.

Considering that holding inventory together the first two years to be the most critical I would in all probability keep what I
thought was the best of the 2nd 30 day cows. [I would not keep their calves due to being 2 years out of production]
With 1/2 blood mothers you will have 3/4 blood calves on the ground the first go around but still 2 years away from 7/8's.

From my own experience I know a 3/4 angus-corriente can easily go over 900 lb in 12 months and hopefully grade choice
in 4 to 6 months. (It has been 20 years since I finished any steers and not sure my heart would stand the strain again!)
Probably the best answer to the question originally posted is be young, optimistic and blessed! LVR
 

TwoByrdsMG

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 13, 2018
Messages
200
Reaction score
69
Location
Eagle Point, OR
you want black calves with a little ear in this part of the country, other colors unless tiger stripes will be discounted, BWF is ok
Well Joe, I personally do not like having black cattle at all when the summer heat comes on. Excellent point that the market is a little different down there than I am picturing though.

So with that in mind, I would still pick up moderate mature red simmental (or RA) mamas and dark grey murray mamas. I would still use a terminal bull for most of the herd as a live cleanup Black Brangus bull. Spend the first 3 weeks of breeding season doing AI of the best ones, then heat detection tags and turn out after that with the cleanup bull.

Keep replacements out of the AI herd and any non-black heifers from the cleanup bull. Castrate all bull calves out of the herd bull.
 

angus9259

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 2, 2007
Messages
2,867
Reaction score
51
Location
Michigan
Honda 250R cross Yamaha YZ500. Then I’d breed back with a Honda 200x trike. I’d never take anything to the sale barn and be money ahead.
 

Warren Allison

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 9, 2020
Messages
648
Reaction score
365
Location
Georgia
Now all of the above can be thrown out the window if you can latch on to those 700# cows weaning 500# calves in six months.
Good luck with that!
@Pineywoods230 , in August, I helped a friend roundup, load and carry to the sale, about 100 or so 1/2 Corr 1/2 Ultrablack calves, that were born in February. 50 steers, one bull calf that had escaped the knife, and about 50 heifers. All solid black and all polled. They weighed between 500 and 540 lbs. The steers brought $1.46 lowest to $1.58 highest. Heifers were $1.36 to $1.46. The one bull calf was $1.54. All of the cows are 700-750 lbs., maybe a few are 800 lbs. There is a whole, 25-page thread about it on this BREEDS forum.
 

Warren Allison

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 9, 2020
Messages
648
Reaction score
365
Location
Georgia
Bigfoot> Other than color, which is a matter of choice, I agree with your analogy. From my own experience I have found
the tighter you can cull in the beginning the quicker you will show a profit. In my example above I would definitely keep
every cow that had a bull calf in the first 30 days over anything calving in the 2nd 30 days.
I understand keeping cows that calve the 1st 30 days over cows that calves in the 2nd 30, but why only those with bull calves? The cow has nothing to do with the sex of the calf.
 

faster horses

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 7, 2011
Messages
256
Reaction score
320
I agree. Heifers won't generally be wilder at 3 than they are at 2. In fact, if you handle them much at all (and do it gentle, without whooping and hollering), they should be more gentle as they get older.
At our place cattle have no reason to be wild. This was back in the 1960's and they were fed hay during winter and good pasture during summer. They were handled well, everyone that started calving at 3 years of age stopped doing it. Economics for one, them not liking their calves was another. I don't know how many acres your cattle have to run in, these were range cattle, handled at calving and fed hay during the winter. They had every opportunity to NOT be wild.

"That was a fluke or environment or handling or lack of. Had nothing to do with age."
Myself and many others say it did. We will have to agree to disagree. We went through it;
we wanted them gentle and to top it off, they were Herefords.
 

Lee VanRoss

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 26, 2020
Messages
1,044
Reaction score
1,049
WA> I believe I had already indicated I was keeping all heifers born in 1st 30 days. The cows that had any calf in the 1st 30 days
would have priority over anything calving later as early calving is an indication of fertility.
Due to it being 2 years before the first calf crop can bear fruit I would retain the 2nd 30 day mothers over their daughters
to maintain number in the breeding herd especially in the 2nd year. As the number of 1st 30 day calves increases the inventory
can be filled by them. I have no problem keeping a cow that has a calf in the 2nd 30 days but once she does I will never
keep another heifer from her and I will replace her as soon as I find a better replacement.
To be honest it can be hard to leave the emotions out of who goes and who stays but the law of averages points to
the early born calves being the most profitable. An ancestor may have been the 5th Earl of Angus but I can assure you
he never left me anything I could carry in my hand! Therefore it behooves me to be a hard ass about who gets to stay
in the herd. LVR
 

Brute 23

Brute 23
CT Supporter
Joined
Apr 19, 2007
Messages
10,392
Reaction score
2,189
Location
Gulf Coast of South Texas
I wish everyone would put a location in their profile...
But, ...




Keep in mind, there is a HUGE disparity in the different geographical sections WITHIN Texas, and it changes as much going North to South on the Eastern side as it does going East to West all across Texas. "One size does not fit all" in this state. The piney woods generally gets lots more rain than the coastal bend area and coastal south Texas and certainly more than areas any where to the West.
Temps are much different as well and a few degrees either way in the average annual high/low temps can make a lot of difference especially when humidity is factored in. RafterS is only about 70 miles due West of me and his area is totally different than where I live.
I live on the southwest edge of the pineywoods, he lives on the grand prairie. There is a BIG difference, just as there is a big diff in where I live and where Brute lives and ranches.
There is a reason #17 (pineywoods) is colored green..and it is not just because it has pine trees on it.

View attachment 9305
Hell, we have to change the game plan property to property... pasture to pasture.
 

TexasRancher

Well-known member
Joined
May 28, 2008
Messages
72
Reaction score
56
Location
Ferris/Commerce. Texas
I made lots of mistakes on assembling my herd....but no regrets..learned a lot. I'm new to this myself, but it's really easy to look at what other cattlemen ranchers are doing and the quality of their herd. I can't help myself to check all cattle i see from the road and their land/systems in place.
If I were to start over with a decent budget...I'd march myself over to a cattle ranch, one that i admired, with nice health cows-calves, all 6 or 7's...Red Angus (preferred) and buy yearling heifers directly from that rancher. Then, i'd hunt for a good bull raising ranch, an Angus bull with differing farm location genetics...i'd buy two angus bulls- both 2 year olds...one red and one black. I heard a lot of good things about cross-breeding Herefords and Angus...mixed...genetic wise their health is better...but the mixed cattle I own are more skiddish. I would never buy again from a sale barn...buy direct from farmers/ranchers you know and can see their operation, physical health and temperament.
With the cows/heifers i am looking for body condition...with the bulls i am looking for body condition strong and big (no deformed short legged small wide muscular pig) and if he's approachable for cubes and for touch after. How the bull responds to me. Respect, care and the visual eye-to-eye is required with working with a bull...and i need that comfort margin from him. I would want to spend the time and work around any bull before the purchase even if that meant several days of getting up to drive over to the ranch and meeting him in the mornings.
**or** i'd purchase a bull, with the contract stating i could return him for full balance in 90 days for any reason.
 

farmerjan

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 1, 2016
Messages
3,912
Reaction score
1,100
Location
Shenandoah ValleyVirginia
I like to calve my heifers at 27-30 months. We do not feed anything extra to get heifers to grow faster/better and some of the pasture is mediocre. I like them to have a bit more size. I have not had any problem with them calving to that bull or to subsequent plus bulls. Their calves run in the 60+ lb size, they spit them out, the calves get up and get going and grow quite good. I have alot better luck with them being MENTALLY mature to want to take care of their calves... and to protect them from the [email protected]#*d black vultures that we are having one he// of a time with.

We use a calving ease bull on first calf heifers. Then they go with the mature herd and those bulls are all plus weight category. There are a few exceptions... my longhorn stays at the one pasture where I calve the heifers , and where I keep my dairy nurse cows, and a lame cow that drops a calf every 11 months...and odd balls, and they get the easy calving bull there on his off time from breeding.... longhorn has pretty big horns now and not worth the trouble moving her and she helps to keep out the dogs and coyotes.... easy place for me to check on the heifers. So the calving ease bull will catch a few oddballs... the lame cow just had her 3rd calf... less than 11 months since the last one... she was slated to sell after the first calf, but bred right back and does a good job and gets around enough to milk good so she is still here.

Here the calves have to be black to bring a decent price... and there is a big discount on charolais, and anything with "ear" or much leather... so has to be angus/hereford type crosses... too much looking like a simmental the buyers will also discount. You either raise what you like and privately sell, or you raise what sells in your area. I like red cows for grazing in our hotter weather... I like "oddball" kinds.... belted galloways, speckle park, different breeds. Gotta market beef if you are raising them, not feeders.

We keep most of our own heifers as replacements... and we cull for temperment as much as anything. If they have an attitude towards us, or have that high headed looking over the fence for a way out type of BS... they get to go out and stay gone, to someone else's place.....

We buy and sell a few cattle too, and will pick out some good ones to keep.... sometimes at dispersal sales, but, mostly they are one and dones though, and the purpose is like @Dave talked about... buy right and sell them and the calves at the end of the season and make a little if bought right.
 

Cada22

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 20, 2017
Messages
110
Reaction score
30
I would AI them to the best 4-5 frame red angus bulls I could afford and turn them out with a red
angus bull of equal quality.
LVR- please explain this part. What is the benefit of the trips through the chute, the semen and set up costs, and the overall work to AI when covering with the same quality bulls? Would be roughly same costs, then you would have the residual value of the bulls at the end.
 

TexasRancher

Well-known member
Joined
May 28, 2008
Messages
72
Reaction score
56
Location
Ferris/Commerce. Texas
No matter what color or breed of cattle chosen you can expect to be competing with the cattle genome to herd phenotyping element
as applied by The Agricultural Genome to Phenome Initiative funded by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
Once this is established and in place it may be hard to sell to the major market unless your cattle have the proper genetic marker.

The above aside and realizing the possibility of heifers washing out of my program I would start with a 100 solid color red or black
1/2 blood Corriente heifers. I would AI them to the best 4-5 frame red angus bulls I could afford and turn them out with a red
angus bull of equal quality. Breed at 15 months for 60 days and figure anything above a 95 % calf crop as a bonus.
In any case one can figure on half being bulls with around 45 being heifers. Retain all heifers born in the first 30 days of the
calving period and market the rest including any of the original herd calving after 60 days in the calving period. Also sell any
cow that does not wean a live calf for any reason.

I would have them bred to calve when the ground temperature was just under 50 degrees. (mid to late April this latitude)
I would screen the bulls to insure they had low milk epd's as the calves will be born when grass is available and I consider
a high milking cow as a liability. Also I aim to have bred cows in around a 5 - 6 body condition at the time of calving.

As to feed I use rotational grazing and hay once a year. I will buy feed in a drought for the 1st 30 day cows and will, if forced,
market anything calving beyond that point. Admittedly it can take a lot of notches it the belt to accomplish this but in
the end when you succeed you will have cattle tougher than Mike Fink on a river boat and you can sleep like a baby during
the calving season. I would caution anyone: If what you are doing now is not working how can doubling down or doing
anything close result in anything but a disaster? Also realize that iron and oil are not required nutrients for grass so limit
the amount you allow to come between the sun and the ground. Finally in all cases, pray!
You definitely are the cattleman expert engineer LVR...if i knew just 33% of what you know about cattle production....i believe i could successfully succeed while mitigating risks of health, births and drought. However you're scaring me with the USDA Agr Genome to Phoneme infinitive ..once establish, can they really draw blood from the cattle and quickly test...before the sale? If that becomes the case...and it's a marker in the blood....I'll just dope mine with that Genome marker on the day of the sale. Wondering how many years have you been in cattle LVR?
 

Lee VanRoss

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 26, 2020
Messages
1,044
Reaction score
1,049
Cada22> We all work within the parameters of our individual circumstance. The original question is "If you were starting a new herd
from scratch"
which leaves a lot of latitude. The advantage of more bulls, especially in the beginning, is a broader genetic base.
As one continues into the program they will find certain family lines will become more dominant and others will eliminate themselves
for one reason or another. Is it doable? In theory yes, but hardly financially practical and without volume, probably not.
The question allows for a certain amount of hypothetics but it does not absolve one of the consequences of their actions when applied
in fact. If you want to become the author of your own insomnia start thinking you have all the answers to raising cattle! LVR
 

Lee VanRoss

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 26, 2020
Messages
1,044
Reaction score
1,049
TexasRancher> The song gets into the musician before the musician can get into the song.
The same with cattle. One can go through the motions and even look like a cowman with the hat and truck
but until the cow is in you it is just going through the motions. These pages are filled with people who
are at one with their stock and the life that revolves around it. While we may not agree on method or color,
horn or hump let there be no doubt about the zest for the life. Set your own goals, live your dream with honesty
and determination and you will never be sorry. LVR ps: Have you any idea of how many people in this world would like to have your handle?
 

LocustDaleCattleCompany

CT Supporter
CT Supporter
Joined
Jun 22, 2015
Messages
229
Reaction score
63
Location
Northern Virginia
Locust; I agree with the Angus. But, you take a big hit in N.E. Texas with red Angus. I prefer them, but I also like a profit.
Gotcha, same up here in VA about red calves vs. black or BWF. I’ve threatened to keep every heifer Red Baldie that is calved on our farm and have a whole herd of them some day. Run back on homozygous black Bulls and no one would ever know their mommas are red baldies. I get tired of the red ones usually being top end calves but get discounted at the sale barn. Just doesn’t make any sense to me.
 

TennesseeTuxedo

CT Supporter
CT Supporter
Joined
Jul 9, 2011
Messages
18,514
Reaction score
3,093
Location
Live in Franklin, TN farm in Warsaw, KY
Gotcha, same up here in VA about red calves vs. black or BWF. I’ve threatened to keep every heifer Red Baldie that is calved on our farm and have a whole herd of them some day. Run back on homozygous black Bulls and no one would ever know their mommas are red baldies. I get tired of the red ones usually being top end calves but get discounted at the sale barn. Just doesn’t make any sense to me.
I do what you’re describing.
 

Latest posts

Top