Friday, January 13, 2012

Selling Steer Calves

 We're lucky to get a trucker with a fine rig to haul our calves to the stockyard auction.
Jeremy was right on time and backed the truck into the loading ramp on the first try. I'm glad that isn't my job. Quiet voices and a calm demeanor are the order of the day.
 Truckers are in big demand in GreaterDakota. We have an oil boom going on out west. There is a shortage of workers in nearly every skill.  Luckily for us, some guys like both ranching and driving a truck. The trailer is a two story luxury transport. The only thing missing was a Vistadome. But there are plenty of windows for air circulation and peeking at the passing countryside.
 As we started the process, the barn cats decided to leave the area and hunt somewhere else for dinner.
The weather has been mild, but the cold is moving in. 
Feed costs are rising rapidly, and the market is up. Time to sell the calves. 
First on the trailer means a spot with a view. The trailer is divided into pens for animal comfort and safety. Jeremy goes in and out organizing the trailer. Cattleman Jim is in the barn and the pen sorting, counting, and sending the steers up the ramp.
A calf is a once a year commodity and we want as little stress as possible. A safe, easy trip is very important to Cattleman Jim. The better the calves look at the stockyard auction, the better our chances of a fair pay off for a year of costs and work. 
So one by one they load onto the truck. 
Jeremy checks, closes and locks the trailer before pulling expertly away from the loading chute. 
He points the truck toward the stockyard where the calves will be sold to feedlots. They will be fattened and resold when they are ready for slaughter as meat.
Another season of work completed on the warmest January day since yesterday in GriggsDakota.

1 comment:

  1. Love auction time, but I always have one favorite I am kinda sad to see leave...