“A man who fears nothing is a man who loves nothing.” …I recently heard this quote in a movie. I certainly don’t suggest getting your theology from a secular movie, but this quote has triggered my thinker. What do I fear? Well, I spend a lot of time praying for my wife and kids and for the farm. Do I fear something going wrong with those things, such as harm, a danger, financial distress or some other disaster? Most certainly. Maybe the quote stems from the idea that if you don’t have anything, you don’t fear losing it. In multiple instances in 2022 I lost friends, relatively young friends, suddenly and completely unexpectedly. Life is tough, it is fearful. However: 1 John 4:18 “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.” There is only ONE with a perfect love, only ONE we can trust with our fears. I’m still in need of learning how to cast my fearful burdens on Him. Why do we carry so much weight someone else has offered to bear?
Frame Scores: As I was looking through our sale catalog, I particularly noticed our listed frame scores. To calculate the scores, we take a hip height during our bull and heifer work days in December then use their age and a chart we found online to calculate the score. This is the way we’ve always done it, and for the sake of consistency (so previous customers know how to prepare), we will continue to do so. I do, however, want to make the following point: The way we develop seedstock (slowly) will almost certainly result in shorter hip heights at any given age prior to maturity because our animals get no supplemental feed products that would more quickly help them express their mature height. Our cows and herd bulls typically mature at a 3-4 frame score. So, what does this mean in terms of interpreting hip heights? To be on the safe side I would add 1 to 1.5 frame scores to the values we have listed in the catalog to come up with a more accurate final frame score. Though we have some animals listed as 1 frames, they will almost certainly NOT be that small at maturity. I don’t want anyone disappointed if you are truly in search of a 1-frame animal.
The following quote is from our Customer/DVM regarding frame scores:
“Some beef producers, unfamiliar with your program, might think, “Why do these 20+ month old bulls look so small?” In answer to this, a strategy could be pointing out that developing bull calves need good nutrition pre-weaning, but post-weaning are best developed at moderate nutritional planes. Bulls on post-weaning high energy diets have shown lower sperm output as well as reduced epididymal reserve (needed for multiple breedings in a short timespan) compared to bulls on moderate energy diets (citation 1 and 3, below). Citation 2 discusses some of the detrimental effects of too much scrotal fat, which is reduced thermoregulation. Additionally, grain feeding bulls is believed to be the main risk factor for seminal vesiculitis.”
Birth Weight & Calving Ease: I found the following online as well. I don’t know if it’s true, but I found it interesting and the conclusion entertaining:
So, what do they conclude from this information? Warning: Continued selection for light birth weights will ultimately reduce the mature sizes and performance of your cattle. This is EXACTLY what we think producers with cow frame scores higher than a 5 SHOULD be doing! And, by the way, performance (whatever that means) is not our goal, efficiency is. We want momma cows to wean 50%+ of their body weight. On the other end of production, our grain-finished cattle for beef have 750-900 lb hanging carcass weights…that’s PLENTY big.
If you have any interest bidding in the sale Sight UnSeen (SUS), please let us know and we will get that information to Ashley. Ashley does all our SUS bidding as well as the bidding on the bulls and bred heifers we would like to keep in the program. She has identified 2 bulls and over a dozen bred heifers she thinks we should bid on. We don’t always get the lots we bid on, but we want to always be fully transparent we are bidding on our own animals. This is the ONLY way we restock our herd. Every animal we produce for seedstock can be purchased by someone who wants the animal more than we do. We think that’s the most-fair way to handle things. We have nothing to hide. We don’t believe any other seedstock producer does this, and it’s just one more way that I’m CRAZY…for you!
Grace, truth, and peace to you all.