I'm sure Kermit the Frog would like to be described as having "fancy hair" and being "good and green."
But you might not think about those phrases also describing feeder cattle coming through the sale barn at Pratt Livestock last week. Other descriptors included:
- "You'll love the kind, gentlemen."
- "Broke to the bunk."
- "These beauties are hot-wire broke."
- "They had everything in the world done to 'em and are ready to go."
- "Look at these, fellas, and their big sisters are coming right behind."
Cattle Sale from Kim Fritzemeier on Vimeo.
We sold yearlings about a month earlier than we normally do. Randy made that decision because we had less silage and hay to feed than we sometimes do. In addition, after a reconnaissance mission to the sale barn the week before, he thought prices seemed good.
The sale itself is a one-day event. But it represents a lifetime of work, beginning when Randy joined 4-H. In high school, he bought a cow, and it produced a calf each year. Then, when he was a junior at K-State in 1977, he bought 35 cows and began renting the Ninnescah pasture, where we still take cow-calf pairs each spring. It was the true beginning of his cow-calf herd.
Much the same, the journey with this crop of feeder calves didn't start and end on one day in February. The calves were born on the County Line more than a year ago, and we have been caring for them ever since.
|First baby of 2017 - January 2017|
Don't talk with your mouth full, No. 705!
Last week, we rounded up the feeder calves and sorted off 25 heifers to keep. They'll be first-time mothers in 2019. And the rest went through the sale barn on February 1. They were among some 3,000 head of cattle sold at Pratt Livestock that day. (The prior week, Pratt Livestock had 5,000 head sold at their Thursday sale.)
The sale ends one chapter. (And we've since paid off an operating loan with the proceeds, so the bank is happy, too.)
The next chapter has already begun with a new crop of 2018 calves.
|First calf of the Class of 2018|
And the journey continues.