Making a Livin'

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rowdyred

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I know this is a very vague question, but....How many momma cows would it take to make a living where you live? I know it depends on a lot of factors, so please don't start preaching to me, :) . Just curious, I'm looking at a career change, I'm in north Mississippi.
 

willow bottom

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Every person's answer will be different. Way too many variables. My very short answer is 150 momma cows
 
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rowdyred

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willow bottom":z0av9xuo said:
Every person's answer will be different. Way too many variables. My very short answer is 150 momma cows
What part of the country are you from, if you don't mind me asking?
I agree that just about everybody's answer will vary depending on where they live.
 

Dave

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In Washington and Oregon the general figure is 300 cows. I know one guy who makes a living on 200 cows run on leased land that he has cheap leases. I know of another family (grand parents, man and wife who runs things, and their 25 yr old son) they live very comfortably on 400 cows. Mostly land that they own with no debt and a little leased land. As you said there are a lot of variables involved.
 

jehosofat

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I'm hoping to give it a whirl in a couple more years when I am built up into the 250 range, but I have zero debt. We'll see.
 

willow bottom

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rowdyred":2vg5h0rf said:
willow bottom":2vg5h0rf said:
Every person's answer will be different. Way too many variables. My very short answer is 150 momma cows
What part of the country are you from, if you don't mind me asking?
I agree that just about everybody's answer will vary depending on where they live.

Mississippi
 

jltrent

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No debts, no insurance, grow your on feed and tight as Dicks hatband, you could live on 119 1/2 cows. Eat half a cow and sell the other half.
 

skyhightree1

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It's easy to get numbers thrown at you. I am a person that is coming down off a couple hundred head. My personal lifestyle I can't make a living off of them at today's prices. I don't have a extravagant lifestyle. If you want numbers for me personally I'd need 500 Mama's to make a living being serious.
 

sstterry

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skyhightree1":26idgqbu said:
It's easy to get numbers thrown at you. I am a person that is coming down off a couple hundred head. My personal lifestyle I can't make a living off of them at today's prices. I don't have a extravagant lifestyle. If you want numbers for me personally I'd need 500 Mama's to make a living being serious.
Sky,
You could make a living selling hams! :D
 

skyhightree1

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sstterry":9a8x24ns said:
skyhightree1":9a8x24ns said:
It's easy to get numbers thrown at you. I am a person that is coming down off a couple hundred head. My personal lifestyle I can't make a living off of them at today's prices. I don't have a extravagant lifestyle. If you want numbers for me personally I'd need 500 Mama's to make a living being serious.
Sky,
You could make a living selling hams! :D

Yes sir, That I could do. :D
 

Farm Fence Solutions

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Really depends on how much your real job pays, doesn't it? I did the math, and if I can get an extra 20 miles of fence built this fall, I will be able to afford to keep more cows this winter.
 

shaz

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rowdyred":1yeg8ncq said:
I know this is a very vague question, but....How many momma cows would it take to make a living where you live? I know it depends on a lot of factors, so please don't start preaching to me, :) . Just curious, I'm looking at a career change, I'm in north Mississippi.

How much does decent pasture cost where you are?
 

TexasBred

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jltrent":1jpvuevo said:
No debts, no insurance, grow your on feed and tight as Dicks hatband, you could live on 119 1/2 cows. Eat half a cow and sell the other half.
If I knew I was depending on them for a living I figure I'd have to allocate two weaned bull calves just to cover my liquor bill. :lol2: :cowboy:
 

Brute 23

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Its more of a question of how much land and/or equipment do you need to inherit or how much money do you need to make else where to ride out your days with cattle. I don't think its possible to start from scratch and live off cattle.

Even if its all paid for... you would be getting by more than living off the cattle IMO.
 

JMJ Farms

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All depends on the definition of a living. I figure my cost to maintain a momma cow is $400/yr. if calves are bringing $700 and I want to make $100k/year I’d need 333 momma cows. Adjust for open cows, lower prices, higher inputs, etc and I would say I’d need 500 momma cows and no debt. That’s a lot of work for $100k. But I’m gonna keep trying to get there. At the rate I’m going it’s gonna take me 20 more years :lol2: I will be 57 by then. Then I can sell em all and buy my wife a beach house and they can plant me bc I’m gonna be worn out.
 

Lucky

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Are we just scraping by or really operating? I would say 300 to get by but it wouldn’t be sustainable long term. To really make it long term 750 or better. Even if everything was paid for and given to you it will eventually need to be replaced and the land needs $$ back too.
 

skyhightree1

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Lucky":3vbutttq said:
Are we just scraping by or really operating? I would say 300 to get by but it wouldn’t be sustainable long term. To really make it long term 750 or better. Even if everything was paid for and given to you it will eventually need to be replaced and the land needs $$ back too.

Agree I spent 15k on liquid nitrogen this year
 

backhoeboogie

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willow bottom":19ejhkme said:
Every person's answer will be different. Way too many variables. My very short answer is 150 momma cows

I am more aligned with that thinking, with no debt. Tractor paid for (sitting) and equipment. Way more tractor than I need. I don't need a $70K truck. 2 sets of working pens are sitting at the house now waiting on the next farm and project. Trailers, scales, 4 sea lands, all just sitting and taking up space. All I need is land and cows. I'll jump when I retire if not sooner. We're about to liquidate 3 houses. Not worth the hassle. We will still have one house the step son lives in and our house and 17 acres we live in. I'd like to flip the capital gains into land this time around.

We've been looking. I will need a hay baler. We sold all the cows when we sold the farm. So I will be buying 100 or so head and I don't want to buy during the peak. The land will have to have good cross fencing and water. 5 acre deep lake for irrigating during droughts would be nice. A year's worth of hay stock piled under the Caustic Burno plan.

We just haven't found that place yet.

Property taxes will be ongoing. Fuel and maintenance. Fence repair. Medicines. The cows have to pay for everything and then I'll expect a profit on each one. Just like before.

150 head should earn me something around $50K a year. If they don't I'll quit. I've got margin put away and it has earned well under the current economy situation.
 

Brute 23

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You can live on $50K because you built up a nest egg else where. You are established so you can probably maintain on $50K. $50K won't get you far now days. A person can't build what you have with $50K a year. You cant save for a rainy day, retirement, pay for kids, a house, insurance, or any thing on $50K. One bump in the road and your done and will never dig out. Dont even think about a vacation or sending your kids to college. Its basic math. It won't work.

Try being self employed and buying medical insurance right now for your family.

The cost of living has gone up significantly in the last 20 years. The price of cattle is exactly the same.
 

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