Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Grande Prairie Grass Fed Beef Update

Well, for the first time since I have lived back up here, some 6 and a half years now, we have received a good hard rain. Around 3 days and probably 3 or 4 inches worth. Makes me wish he had a LOT more rainwater storage capability out at the farm. But mostly I'm just very, very grateful for the moisture and trying not to get greedy by hoping for a week or two of nice warm weather and then a few more showers.

I AM hoping that all this rain has been spread around to where it has been needed even more than where we are, places that have been afire or even just parched to the point of real worry about crops, pastures and woodlands.

Around 10 days ago though, we had just an amazingly beautiful day. Clear, calm, hot (especially considering our latitude), and not even too bad for mosquitoes. So lovely that I took my camera along for the walk to move the cattle over to their day pasture. I figured I would take some update pictures of the calves to share here.

These are the first two calves that were born this spring. Both are doing very well but clicking for the larger view should show just how muscular the lighter Blonde bull is getting. Impressive genetics indeed. The heifer is lovely as well, and looking like she will be a good herd addition.

The larger bull here is pretty special as well. A couple of weeks younger than the calves pictured above, this bull is pretty much the same size now. I'd just loooove to have about 20 versions of his mother at about 5 yrs old, or I guess a big pile of gold might be alright too.

Lickerish's bull, the little one of the group, is still lagging behind. He wasn't eating well for awhile but Dad nursed him along and now he is eating as voraciously as his siblings. I am betting that by summer's end he is just about as large as the rest, other than the Blonde who is likely to be massive by then. Click on the lower picture for another good look. That Blonde is one damn fine specimen.

2 of the next 4 beeves which will go to processing are looking good as well. The other two will dress out lean but probably quite light. They are twins whose mother had but one chamber of her udder working. She spent a few weeks trying to "lose" one of them, that one went on to steal from two other nursing cows and actually ended up the larger of the twins. In the wild, if she had managed to both survive and retain fertility she would likely have gone on to mother a line of very hardy animals. However it is highly unlikely that she will be fertile therefore she is likely to be processed. Kind of a shame but these things happen. As I said earlier, in the wild she would likely have been predator food within the first two weeks. With us she will have lived into maturity in the fresh air, on the side of the lake readers can see elsewhere on this blog.

Anyway, that's all for now I think. More to come on our grass fed beef and some ideas for the future.


LindaM said...

Amazing how muscular they are. Another thing that stands out is their fur. Lovely colors. Will they become less fluffy over time or does the breed stay furry? Anyhow, thanks for sharing.

Jerry said...

Their hides will stay like that until their winter coat comes in late this fall...but lets not rush into that shall we?!

In the spring they'll rub that winter coat off and will be all sleek and shiny like the others. I'll have to show some pictures of the others too.

Teresa said...

They look really good! I miss not having a calf this year, but it's a pain to get one cow bred when she doesn't take to AI-ing very well.