Posted January 15th, 2016 — Filed in Stockmanship
Question: Eunice, Tina, and Richard,
Each winter we move our herd of about 275 cows, heifers, and replacements, frequently, in one mob, several miles from one crop residue field to another. How do we keep the leaders, and thus the entire herd, on the road or on a good path across and open field. What frequently happens is that our riders or atv riders ride up upon the leaders to keep on the path, which causes the leaders and then the entire herd to slow down, stop and mill aound. This is accompanied by lots of shouting and arm waving. We should and could do better. What say you?
Answer: I don’t have you in my database, but since you mentioned Tina and Richard I assume you have been to one of their schools. This is too broad a question to answer in an e-mail unless you have had some exposer to Bud’s methods. I would feel more comfortable answering if you had been to one of Bud’s schools or have watched either of the videos I sell on Stockmanship, but here goes …
You should not open the gate from the old pasture until you have gathered the cattle properly and they were acting “right.” If they come to the gate agitated and not mothered up you should drive them around the pasture until they are working for you. Then open the gate. If some of the cattle are liable to go too fast you can put a person in the lead to adjust their speed
(See the September 27th, 2015 posting on our website “Checking up the Herd.”) This might be a good idea anyway to help set the direction. The cattle should be driven by going back and forth IN STRAIGHT LINES behind the herd, adjusting the angle to get the proper direction. No one should be on the side of the herd.
Posted January 12th, 2016 — Filed in Calendar
Richard and Tina of Hand ‘n Hand Livestock Solutions have two schools coming up:
Read more on their newly re-designed website here.
Posted December 14th, 2015 — Filed in Testimonials
A little less than a year ago, I purchased the Stockmanship Plus hard drive. I’m not much for words, but I really wanted to say Thank You and Thank Bud!
Posted September 29th, 2015 — Filed in Subscription Site Information
If you are a website subscriber, you might have noticed that the stockmanship.com/subscription website access has changed due to hackers trying to break into our site.
In order to secure the site, you will need an additional username/password to access the site. I emailed everyone the new access information, however, if your email bounces or gets lost in spam-land and you didn’t get it, just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I’ll explain the new access information.
Sorry for this inconvenience, but I guess these things just happen in today’s world of hackers trying to get their hands on anything of value!
Posted September 27th, 2015 — Filed in Stockmanship
Question: Regarding the herd you told me about that just wants to take off on a high lope –
Answer: The rider in the lead should not try to MAKE the cattle go slower. He is “JUST THERE.” He must stay in front even if he has to gallop his horse in order to do it. If you try to MAKE them slow down they will just split up, or at least they will want to. Like I’ve told you before, cattle have a one-track mind. It is important that you put them in a position where they can settle down mentally and make a rational decision. With the rider doing nothing distracting, but being JUST THERE the cattle have a chance to decide on their own (let, not make) that there is no reason to keep going. Soon they will stop, but be aware of the movement in the herd because they will likely start moving in another direction and you want to be in position to be in front of the movement.
We nearly always do this when we turn cattle out of a corral. We don’t want them to take off and think they “got away.” That is the kind of thing that often causes the kind of behavior in a herd like you mentioned.
This is different than “leading” a herd of normal cattle. You must still “stay in the lead no matter how fast” but you continually slow down and “test” the herd. You never move back and forth to block cattle from going past you, you do everything from in front by varying your speed. It is important that you have a horse that you can slow down without him swinging sideways. By working the bit with each stride you can teach your horse to keep the same rhythm while either shortening or lengthening his stride. The cattle should have the same view of his rump at all times. If you are coming to a cross-roads and the cattle are working well for you, you can slow up until they are really pushing you, then speed up and “suck” them right past. Cattle that leave the road are the responsibility of someone else. Your job is to get the cattle to follow you.
Posted August 8th, 2015 — Filed in Stockmanship, Testimonials
Awhile back I purchased your stockmanship DVD set and it has proven invaluable. The Bud Box works just the way it’s shown on the video. I am new into handling cattle, and I don’t thin I could have done it without you and Bud. The young man I work with watched our cattle loaded when they were purchased, and he can’t believe how just the two of us are able to get them moved without a hotshot or paddle . . . . .
Posted July 30th, 2015 — Filed in Stockmanship
Question: Last year I took a course on low stress stockman ship from a mutual friend of ours: Tim Westfall. It was mostly theoretical, so I felt I needed an example, so I brought him along as I moved my flock of sheep and herd of cattle to the mountains. I’m in Baja California, Mexico; so most of our range is brush, thick chaparral. As we started moving my animals through the brush, I asked Tim what to do, so he mentioned moving in straight lines perpendicular to the movement of the herd. I remembered from the course he had given before all this techniques which worked great in open areas, but in mountainous brush country you can’t move in straight lines. I asked Tim what options did we have but he couldn’t help, he said it was very hard country. Then he said you might be the only person I could talk to, since you and Bud started out of the California brush. I hope you can give me some advice or refer me to someone with similar terrain.
Answer: It is no different working livestock in the brush than it is in open country. Your “straight lines” don’t have to be perfect, just don’t turn and follow behind the stock. When gathering livestock in the brush with several people just have them ride across until they either don’t see any more animals or until they see the other person, then ride back at an angle a hundred feet or so ahead. From the start work at an angle that will aim the animals you are influencing toward the gate (or the way you want them to go), don’t try to bunch them up in rough country before you start driving them. Don’t try to keep them out of the brush, just work at the proper angle to keep them headed in the right direction. When you drive stock this way, they won’t try to cut back. We’d often have a pasture nearly gathered before we even saw any animals, though we could hear them moving out ahead of us.
You could probably learn a lot from Bud’s Stockmanship DVD set ($200 US funds).
Don’t hesitate to write again if you have a specific problem.
Posted July 22nd, 2015 — Filed in Stockmanship
This is part of a posting on another site I monitor along with my response. I thought it might be of interest to you folks.
“We are committed to low stress handling and have watched the Bud Williams stock handling videos and are trying to learn how to handle our animals correctly.
This weekend when we worked our cattle, we had some problems in the chute – a few of our yearling heifers would just stop and we couldn’t get them moving down the chute. Also, when we were done with them in the head catch, some would just stand there and not move out and wouldn’t budge … “
Here are a few more things to consider about your cattle stopping in the chute.
It is much better to bring each draft of cattle from a pen instead of from the alley since each time you go down to get more cattle you really jam the cattle before you finally get some to go by you. But even if you are taking them from the alley, try to have quite a distance to bring them to the Bud Box. Bring them at a trot. The movement you are creating is necessary for then to have the movement they need to go up the chute. Don’t bring any more cattle than will fill the single file chute. If you brought too many – open the gate and let the excess go back to the bunch. I’ve seen many videos of people working a Bud Box and very few do it correctly. Bud was amazed that the cattle worked as well as they did even when people got behind them and pushed them in. The proper way is to pressure them against the back of the pen. This causes them to want to break back (most people don’t have any problem getting cattle to break back when they are trying to drive them). Your position very near the opening to the single file chute will pull them around you because they want to be able to keep their eye on you as they go by. All of the people and activity must be on the “inside” of this circle. Don’t allow anyone to be on the other side of the single file chute. It’s probably a good idea to have a back-up gate to hold one animal next to the chute. Any more just interferes with the flow. As soon as this animal goes into the squeeze you can go back and move the others up, but other wise, don’t let anyone bother the cattle in the chute. It is important that the animal’s mind is wanting to go forward. This is what makes it easy to get movement into and out of the chute. If they are “forced in” their mind is wanting to go back even if you are able to make them go forward. I have videos of us putting cattle through the chute at the Canadian feedlot where we spent quite a lot of time. We were testing for export and they were gong though at the rate of over 100 per hour. The guy who was loading the Bud Box wasn’t paying attention on one draft and they started back out. He slammed the gate on about five of them and got them into the single file chute. They had to fight these five all the way to the squeeze and even had trouble getting them to leave the squeeze. As soon as these five went through and they started bringing the cattle properly the cattle resumed moving well.
Posted July 15th, 2015 — Filed in Calendar
Richard McConnell and Tina Williams of Hand ‘n Hand Livestock Solutions will be putting on a Bud Williams Livestock Marketing and Proper Stockmanship School in Dickinson, ND, August 18-20 and another in Ogallala, NE, August 24-26.
Read more about the schools on the website or email or call for more information.
Posted July 7th, 2015 — Filed in Stockdogs, Testimonials
Please find enclosed a check for $200 for the 2 hour Starting a Colt DVD set. If it helps my horses as much as the Stockdog handling information on your website has helped my dogs it will be worth every penny. Pushing the dogs around the cattle, changing directions and letting the dogs learn how to work the cattle without me trying to control their every move has helped my dogs a bunch. They have gotten better in 3 days than they ever were in 3 months of prior training methods. Dog are happier and more relaxed and so are the cattle. Thanks …