My, this has been a busy week. We are all tired, and the days have gone by so fast, I have to pause and remember what has worn us down. Last Sunday after church, we buzzed home as fast as we could so we would have enough daylight left in the day to pair up cows and calves. We saddled horses, hauled to the Mullinville pasture and gathered about 100 head to the corner of the pasture to slowly pick off one cow and calf at a time. We needed 70 head sorted to ship to another place. As always, it was a long process. There were a lot of heifers who wouldn’t pick up their calves. As three of us held the cattle with our horses, Joe would spot a pair and work it out through the bunch of cows and push it through the gate. We got done by 5:00 and split up to check cows and get things ready for Monday.
Monday morning we were up early and off to brand. We gathered the 70 head we had paired up the previous afternoon. We felt extremely lucky when we saw a gate had been knocked down, but none of the pairs we had sorted off had found the gate or gone back with the other cows. That would have been a great disaster to begin the day with. We felt grateful that Sunday’s work had not been wasted.
Here I am, waiting on Neut. The guys are pushing the cows, we are waiting to turn them on the other side of the creek bed.
We still wait as the cows are being driven through the prairie dog town. The English breed cows move slowly with their calves as compared to the longhorns. They handle differently. In some ways it is easier and in some ways more frustrating.
After gathering to the corrals, the calves are sorted off of the cows into two different pens. Joe was the gateman. He almost missed this calf!
Laramie has roped a calf and is dragging him to the fire.
The calf now gets a vaccination, brand, eartag and is castrated if it is a bull calf.
After finishing the 70 head we sorted off, we gathered the big pasture and branded 135 more calves. The rest of the day, Joe checked cattle and doctored a calf for scours, which is the term we use for diarrhea. We unsaddled the horses and did all the barnyard chores. The long day was done.