Friday, May 7, 2010

Calves on the Ground

The first Bunchgrass Beef calves of 2010 are on the ground! We're about half way through calving and with the new grass coming on, calves and mamas are happy. Little Basin has an almost all white calf with red ears! It's cavorting season and I'm jealous because the last few times I've been at the river, all the pairs have been high on the canyon bench and all I've seen are steers, yearlings and cows that haven't calved yet. Yes, I did see some of the little critters with the binoculars, but that doesn't count.

We picked up a good-looking black longhorn bull to add to the herd for the summer as well as a young red longhorn bull who will have another year before we put him to use. We said goodbye to Fred, our awesome tri-color bull, who we sold to a ranch out north where he can be in heifer heaven with a new harem for a few years.

In spite of the six inches of snow that arrived on May 5th, we know summer is right around the corner. In another month we'll be thinking of turn-out and trailing the herd to the summer range on the Zumwalt Prairie. Before then we'll gather family and friends for the annual branding, hopefully when it isn't too unbearably hot. Last year we set the date and then it turned out to be about 100 degrees. Right now I can't really imagine it's going to be so hot that I'll want to jump in the swimming hole, but I know it's coming. That and cherries and blackberries and plums and homemade ice cream and barbecues and sitting around the fire with the guitar and concertina, watching the stars blink on in a violet blue sky.

From Sara, Magpie Ranch, home of Bunchgrass Beef