Raising Cattle

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fstmkt

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I'm new to raising cattle...Is there a book(s) that will help me get started with raising cattle. I have 40 acres with trees...no grass, is it possible to raise cattle and break even or make a little profit bring food to the herd? I have absolutely no experience. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
 

Workinonit Farm

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fstmkt":1t7xvbb9 said:
I have 40 acres with trees...no grass, is it possible to raise cattle and break even or make a little profit

It is possible to do it without grass, but you will be so far 'in the hole' doing it. You can raise them without grass by buying all the food they will need to eat. That method leads to going broke.

Good books available, yes. Storey's Guide to Raising Beef Cattle and The Stockman's Handbook are good places to start reading.

Another way to 'get started' is to get to know other people in your area that raise cattle. Get to know them and their methods.

Read these boards, and start from page one. LOTS of info here in the archives.

Katherine
 

hillsdown

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The books Katherine recommended are excellent ,read them until you have everything memorized and then read them again..Talk to your local LA vet and establish a relationship with him her, ask their opinions and usually they will be very honest if they think you are going to self destruct.

No grass ,then you will never break even in the cattle business..Not now..

Some good advice to make money is trees, there is a demand for trees and you have them already. Trees are quite easy keepers and eat less than cows. ;-)
 

dun

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Workinonit Farm":squaj48g said:
hillsdown":squaj48g said:
Trees are quite easy keepers and eat less than cows. ;-)

That's the truth! I know my trees are very, very easy keepers.

Katherine
Wait till you get a really dandy ice storm.
 

Workinonit Farm

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dun":gn868e85 said:
Workinonit Farm":gn868e85 said:
hillsdown":gn868e85 said:
Trees are quite easy keepers and eat less than cows. ;-)

That's the truth! I know my trees are very, very easy keepers.

Katherine
Wait till you get a really dandy ice storm.

Fortunately my trees are nowhere near the house or the powerlines. The same can't be said for the general 'neighborhood' or surrounding farms/homes though.

We had a microburst a couple of years ago, that was a real eye opener.

Katherine
 

denoginnizer

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You might be able to swap hunting rights in your trees for pasture grazing rights on someone elses place. Could possibly cut all/some the trees and use the proceeds to establish pasture . Sell the place and buy a pasture place. not much profit in cattle
 
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fstmkt

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denoginnizer":2areaum5 said:
You might be able to swap hunting rights in your trees for pasture grazing rights on someone elses place. Could possibly cut all/some the trees and use the proceeds to establish pasture . Sell the place and buy a pasture place. not much profit in cattle

I know it varies, but how much does one cow bring in if you raise it from birth? Would I be better off raising Dairy Cattle?
 

regolith

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Would I be better off raising Dairy Cattle?

Nope.
Can't speak for the US, but usually prices paid for in-calf dairy heifers are so closely linked to the cost to get them to that age that there's no profit.
Less, if you don't have grass to start with.

What sort of trees are they?
 

Limomike

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dun":daafzxlj said:
Workinonit Farm":daafzxlj said:
hillsdown":daafzxlj said:
Trees are quite easy keepers and eat less than cows. ;-)

That's the truth! I know my trees are very, very easy keepers.

Katherine
Wait till you get a really dandy ice storm.

Dun.. you crack me up. :lol: :lol2: ONly reason I am laughing is because I know the pain in the butt that ice caused you and me around our places. Not so easy keepers when that ice comes along.
 

cypressfarms

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dun":38tyginr said:
Workinonit Farm":38tyginr said:
hillsdown":38tyginr said:
Trees are quite easy keepers and eat less than cows. ;-)

That's the truth! I know my trees are very, very easy keepers.

Katherine
Wait till you get a really dandy ice storm.

Or a hurricane :!:

fstmkt, you don't say where your from. Regardless, bringing feed to cows will never result in a profit - unless you run a stockyard. For most of us, each time a feed bag is opened, money is lost. As my mentor Caustic says, "grass in front of cow, bull behind". Notice, grass is first. If your dead set on cattle, you could clear/log the land and then have grazing potential.
 
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fstmkt

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I'm in South Carolina. I have sooooo many questions. With the cost of land and the amount it takes, 2-3 acres per head it seem impossible to make money if you have to go out and purchase land. From birth how long before you sell? What is an average weight? I know this can vary, but I'm trying to get an idea of possible profit from one cow. I know if I feed hay for five months it will cost approximately 300-325...this can change.
 

bigag03

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The 2007 SPA data from the state of Texas said that the average cost of maintaining 1 cow unit for a year was $592. Now, with no grass, and carrying all the feed to them you will be on the high side of this. Keep in mind that this number takes into account feed, fuel, equipment, interest, labor and the whole 9 yards. With the current calf market, a weaned calf (typically 205 days of age) will not break even and certainly won't with your input costs.
 

Caustic Burno

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bigag03":271o4i03 said:
The 2007 SPA data from the state of Texas said that the average cost of maintaining 1 cow unit for a year was $592. Now, with no grass, and carrying all the feed to them you will be on the high side of this. Keep in mind that this number takes into account feed, fuel, equipment, interest, labor and the whole 9 yards. With the current calf market, a weaned calf (typically 205 days of age) will not break even and certainly won't with your input costs.

My cost last year ran 1.35 per day per head which came at to 492 froghides per head.
 

bigag03

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My cost last year ran 1.35 per day per head which came at to 492 froghides per head.

Congrats CB!!! I know several breeders that were able to keep their inputs in that range and lower. I also know a few that were much higher than the Texas average. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out which of these breeders made money in 2007 (or at least broke even) and which ones didn't.
 
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