Wordless Wednesday #40

Wow- I can hardly believe I am up to 40 WW posts – though I guess technically this doesn’t qualify as I am adding words. Though I’ve been very remiss in keeping the blog up to date lately, we have been busy and the ranch is in full summer mode. Here are some recent pictures. 20160522_19572820160525_09355820160525_13440020160529_17220420160529_183811

Spring

Spring on the ranch means calving season, one of my favorite times of year, though also stressful. This year we were expecting 20 calves; 19 from our experienced cows and 1 first-time heifer. Lowlines are known for their calving ease, but you just never know when you might have a problem. I am happy to report that all 20 calves have been safely delivered and mamas and babies are doing very well. This year we had several cows that calved in the late afternoon / early evening while we were there with them. It is always something special to watch them come into the world no matter how many times you have seen it.

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Here are some of this year’s calf crop enjoying the sunshine on the hill. We color code the eartags to the bull they are from. All these blue eartags are out of our bull Ox with the cow’s name listed above the calf number.

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I am always amazed at how quickly the calves go from newborn wet on the ground to learning how to stand and nurse. Usually within the first 10 minutes or so. Then, within a couple more days they are running and playing chase through the pasture.

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We are really pleased with the calves this year, great looking, sturdy built. And we ended up with 10 bulls – now steers – and 10 heifers. An even split. 100% breeding and calving success, you can’t ask for better.
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And now back to the other spring chores as we get the pastures ready to put the herd back on grass for the summer.
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Spring Calving

The first calf of the season has arrived. A nice calf out of our bull Snapshot and Denver our one first-time heifer (a female who has not calved yet) this year.

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We bought Denver last year when we were in – where else? – Denver at the National Western Stock show. Our Canadian friends Russ and Linda from Highpoint Lowlines brought her back to Washington for us on their way home. We met them down on I-5  to pick her up. She was in their big cattle trailer with one of their bulls behind her, so we unloaded the bull first and Alex held him while we unloaded Denver from their trailer and loaded her into ours.  All in a gas station parking lot with cars and trucks whizzing by on the freeway. We did get a couple of strange looks.

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Newborn calves are so cute and this one is curious too.

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Closer.

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Sniff. Her mama Denver (who is now officially a cow) is very calm, has lots of milk and is doing a good job taking care of her.

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One calf delivered safe and sound, 19 more to go. I hope they are all this easy and with these good results!