Calf Preconditioning

Last Friday and Saturday we preconditioned calves. To precondition calves we give them two shots and pour them. The shots are complimentary boosters to the shots they receive in the spring. Just like children, calves need booster shots to protect them from viruses and diseases. The pour-on is how we worm the calves. Livestock easily pick up worms from eating grass and nosing around on the ground. It’s important to get rid of the worms so the calves stay healthy.

September 16

We had ideal weather conditions for working cattle. I will admit 32* makes for a chilly 4-wheeler ride while gathering pairs at day break. With highs in the upper 50’s the cattle were comfortable and we were able to work all day.

Friday our working crew was Cousin T, Roy, J and I. We worked 3 groups of calves in two locations. We also got set up at a third location. I had chicken tortilla soup warming in the crock pot and made buttermilk biscuits the night before. Chocolate chip and Peanut butter Kiss cookies rounded out our dinner.

Saturday Janelle (Cousin T’s wife) and Steven (Miss Ashleigh’s boyfriend) joined us as we ran three more groups of calves through the chute. Janelle made tater-tot casserole and a fruit salad that really hit the spot for dinner.

September 16

Sunday afternoon J and I gathered the yearling to sort and count. We also got ready to chop corn. Monday morning we shipped yearlings. It’s always nice when the cattle surprise us by weighing more than we predicted.

This week we are chopping corn. The chopper showed up at our house Monday afternoon. With good luck it will take 2-3 days at our house and then J will head over to help our neighbor (who owns the chopper).

Are you chopping or harvesting corn on your ranch?

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9 Responses to Calf Preconditioning

  1. No crop land where we live. It’s all tall-grass prairie. 🙂

  2. Kim says:

    We won’t take cattle off summer pasture for another month or so. We cut our corn for grain and got done with that last week. Our silage cutting and silo filling is still to come. We have it hired done, so it’s a matter of fitting into their schedule, too. Wheat planting will likely start next week. The guys are working ground now to prepare for that. Looks like you had beautiful days for your work. I hope your corn chopping goes well!

    • Robyn says:

      Kim,
      We are a good month and a half away from bringing pairs home from summer grass too.

      Glad to hear you got the corn harvested. J and crew got two loads in and something went haywire with the clutch on the truck. J and the neighbor that is chopping for us did some mechanic work on it last night. They didn’t chop today as our neighbor had some bad luck this morning and was unable to come over. J and his Dad hauled hay.

      Area farmers are finishing up spring wheat harvest and a few have started winter wheat planting. I went to North Dakota boarder town today and saw several choppers working.

  3. Cheri says:

    Brrrrr! 32* does make for a cold ride on anything! But refreshing and gets the blood pumping! 🙂
    Always nice when the calves weigh more then expected. We have a nice scale here so we are always weighing stuff!
    Working feeder heifers and replacement heifers this week. I always look forward to working the babies. Especially our keeping heifers. No crops of any kind here. Just cows. They are our harvest. 🙂
    Cheri

    • Robyn says:

      Cheri,
      J and I think it would be nice to have a scale on the chute. We think we would use it every time we run something through the chute. Our curiosity would be too much not to catch a weight.

      Good luck with your cattle work this week.

  4. Alica says:

    We don’t have a ranch, but would a dairy farm do? 🙂 We chopped corn today for silage, filling our three silos. It’s always great to have that job out of the way!

  5. Bonnie says:

    I harvested a whopping 12 ears of sweetcorn. I cut the corn off of the cob and frozen for winter enjoyment. That was my huge corn harvest. I remember when mom would get 100 or bags of frozen corn. Everything is relative. Glad you had good weather of working cattle.

  6. Our 95 year old neighbor was over for a visit this afternoon. We got to talking about corn.. the garden variety. The racoons got all of hers and this was the first year ever that we didn’t plant any. (The garden needed a break.)
    Hooray for healthy cattle!

  7. Roan says:

    Looks like a lot of work. The chicken soup looks awesome and our weather is perfect for a good soup. Think I’ll give that one a try!

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