Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Hay season 2019

It has been a busy summer on our farm.  We decided to start baling our own hay this year so that we could control, as much as mother nature allows, the timing of harvest.  A hot dry stretch at the beginning of May allowed us to get the first cutting off much earlier than normal.

Growing orhard grass for our cows for many years, we focused on small paddocks with frequent grazing rotations.  High palatability along with its nutritional attributes make orchard grass an ideal feed for livestock.

Planting another orchard grass field mid May gave us enough hay for our growing Highland fold...and our daughter's expanding goat herd.  Many thanks to our family for their support and loaning of equipment!

We are now selling the extra hay and have met some great people; feeding lots of different types of animals including rabbits, alpacas, goats, sheep, and horses.  Keeping the bales smaller at 65lbs has been great...much easier for some of us, including myself, to manage.

The third cutting on our established field and first cutting from the Spring planted field are now in the barn.  We are hoping to squeeze in one more cutting before the Fall rains start!

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Spring 2019

A busy Spring on our farm... they all seem to be!  We welcomed a nice crop of calves.

The steers got an invite to munch away on a nice nearby pasture.

A warm dry start to Spring had the pastures growing nicely, and we were able to get the first cutting of hay off extremely early for this area.

Which also meant irrigation season starting.

And lots of fat happy cows!

Friday, January 4, 2019

Covered portable hay feeder for horned cattle

Necessity is the mother of invention... though not an new invention, just another project to build!

The cows down at the woods have done a great job clearing everything edible and we had been haying them by tucking flakes of hay around the trees to keep them from trompling it.  We wanted a way to feed them a little easier, especially if we wanted to get away for a few days and not have to worry about them.  

The new covered hay feeder is made mostly of salvaged material.  It is movable, but heavy enough that the cows can't push it around.  There is a gate at the end to make it easy to add more hay.  Even the gate was repurposed; it was swapped out from our daughter's goat pen for a more goat friendly mesh style... a win-win!  The next test will be to see if we can fit a large bale in it and how many days it will last the coos.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

New wintering ground

We finished fencing some additional acreage this Fall, which included just over acre of thick trees that were getting choked out by ivy.

We moved the older cows down to the trees for the winter and they have done an amazing job of cleaning it up.  They love ivy... who knew?

Lots of small trees and old limbs still left to clean up, but it's looking so much better.  Our hope was to save the few large pines, which aren't common in our area, and the old firs.

My grandparents bought this property in the 50's, and my dad remembers this treed area from his youth.

The cows love their clover pellets to help supplement with their hay for the winter.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Witness to the amazement of birth

We've had cattle about 10 years now, and this is the first time I've witnessed the full birthing process. We went out yesterday after work to move irrigation and our heifer, who we knew was due within the week, was in full labor. It was amazing and scary at the same time. It was all I could do to keep my distance and not intervene. Though as soon as the calf hit the ground, we did go out to make sure it was breathing alright and then gave the new mama and baby space. We kept watch from a distance all evening and she was up and nursing pretty quickly.

Warning: there are pictures of the labor and birth below.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Heifer available Fall 2018

Update: sold

We have an excellent heifer for sale, available in October. She has made excellent gains, curious, red with blonde highlights. Dam is unregistered and has excellent milk production. Sire is Fat Cow Henry, AHCA 56,308. Both parents have great demeanors, calf is not halter trained but shows great potential. Asking $1,200.

Contact us for more information

Sunday, July 8, 2018

New pasture

Our cows got their first taste of the new orchard grass pasture that we planted in early May.  The majority of the new pasture will be baled later this month for their winter feed.