Last Friday I gathered 177 steers that I needed to sort and ship. There were also three heifers from one neighbor and one steer from another neighbor. All four of these came to be in my pasture as a result of being run by their owners and jumping the fence into my place. When the neighbor cattle first got there I couldn’t get within 1/4 mi before they were off to the races, but over the course of several days they incorporated into my herd and would drive nicely.
I drove all of these cattle very easily through a gate that I’d never used before but the neighbor’s steer and three others made a break for it. I checked their movement pretty easily and even though they had to be driven back about 1/2 mi they never tried to break again and went right on in the gate. Those that had already gone through the gate weren’t interested in coming back out while I regathered the four. What was interesting was the neighbor’s reaction to all of this . He witnessed me driving his “crazy” steer and couldn’t believe it. He said the steer had jumped three different fences while he was trying to catch him.
He couldn’t believe how easy my cattle handled versus his. He had actually bought most of these cattle for me and he had bought cattle just like them at the same time. Our death loss this year has been .03% and his has been 3%+. He will doctor four or five times as many cattle per load as we will. We talked a long time about destressing (which he had never heard of) and walking the cattle (which he had never heard of) and he was absolutely fascinated.
At any rate I just wanted to thank you all for all you’ve taught me. Of course if we were being rated on ability from zero to ten I’d be a two and you’d be a ten. Having said that, I used to be a zero so I think I’ve made a lot of progress. I simply can’t wait to get to the pastures every day.