December 10, 2023

From the Barns: Making the effort

Picking up where I left off last month, the Lord has indeed blessed us with another great month. For the most part, things have been going very well, the weather has been good, including a 3-inch rain last weekend and all the guys here have been working hard to accomplish all the jobs and projects that needed done. Of course, we’ll never get caught up, but we continue to keep plugging away and making the effort.

The last week of October we managed to get 94 acres of annual ryegrass sown. The rain immediately followed, but also three mornings of frost and temps below freezing. Not sure what this combination will do to the emergence of the grass. This coming week, temps will be warm, so I guess we will soon find out what is going to happen. The cereal rye we planted in late August has seen good growth with these conditions and we began grazing it about a week ago. We have a good number of the fall cow/calf pairs out there, and a few days ago, we separated the weaned heifers away from the steers and now they are grazing it, as well, but in a separate pasture.

Some of the guys spent a few days hauling in a lot of the hay that I spoke about last month. Paul, Bobby, David and Dad made a huge dent in that and I haven’t tallied up how many bales we have on hand now, but there certainly is a bunch of it. It was good to see Dad out running one of the hay hauling rigs. I know he enjoys it when he is able to get out and pitch in on jobs like that.

A couple of weeks ago, we brought in another 180 head of feeder calves and today we got in and processed a superset of 83 fancy Angus steers bought directly off of a farm in Tennessee. With these additions, our overall cattle numbers are up pretty close to capacity, the highest since earlier this year. This past month’s weather has been really beneficial to the cattle; intakes are very good and I think health has been better than usual.

We shipped off a few more loads of fats and will be seeing a break from that until others are ready in late December or early January. We continue to purchase Livestock Risk Protection coverage to mitigate risk on pretty much all of the cattle we are finishing and backgrounding. Prices are good, but we must be protected for the day that this market heads south again.

The 90 heifers that we will be breeding this fall got their second round of vaccinations this past week, and their synchronization dates are scheduled. On Nov. 15, the vet will be here for tract scoring and pelvic measuring and we will also put in a 14-day CIDR. Dec. 1 is the date for timed AI breeding. Lots that has to be done over the next month and no doubt new things will pop up that have to be addressed in the meantime. We have a good work crew around here and I am sure we will be ready to meet those challenges.

Jeff Beasley

Jeff Beasley

Creal Springs, Ill.