February 7, 2020
Hello all from Ichthys Cattle Enterprise (ICE):
There are probably things I’d rather do less than market cattle…but I try not to do those either. I remember as a child how I considered salesmen to be the lowest life form on the planet…similar to how I view far left, liberal politicians now. You just couldn’t trust them…but I digress. I do NOT want to be a salesman, and I won’t be. You visit with most selling cattle today and their “product” can solve all of your problems. Our cattle can’t do that; they can solve very specific problems but not all of them. We aim to help people build a profitable herd of momma cows that they enjoy working with. If you can profit doing what you want to do, you have, by God’s grace, the world by the tail.
We have had a significant number of calls, emails and texts regarding our cattle since our sale last March. PLEASE FORGIVE ME…I do not do a great job of getting back to you. I, and a few others, are busy doing the work it takes to produce what I believe are the best cattle available to solve the problems I referenced above.
So, what are the problems we can fix, or at least start to work on? Calving Ease: We aim to build bulletproof calving ease into all of our seedstock. Most of our bulls can safely be used on heifers, even some of our composites. We offer a calving ease guarantee on most bulls that covers the cost of a vet call, up to $100/birth. If there is a problem most of our customers simply pull the calf themselves and it’s not a big deal. Always remember, a calving ease bull makes up only half of the genetics of a calf and none of the genetics of a bred heifer. There can still be problems. However, we aim to solve that problem and even are willing to guarantee it. One of the least fun aspects of the cattle business is calving bred heifers…did I hear an Amen?!
Disposition: Another problem in the cattle industry is disposition. Another least fun aspect of the cattle business is dealing with Peloscows (no not a new breed, just cows that are mean and ornery and no one wants to be around). Peloscows do not remain on this operation and are gone given the first opportunity. We currently have none that I am aware of. Like begets like (unless your cows identify as sheep). No, like begets like regardless! Gentle momma cows, by and large, produce offspring that grow up to be gentle. Every bull and bred heifer in our upcoming sale has an excellent disposition rating, collectively it is the highest rating we’ve ever had.
Frame Score: Our cattle will help you reduce the frame size of your herd, a major problem the industry has been acknowledging for a few years. Many claim to want to reduce frame score but purchase 5+ frame bulls. Many of our bulls are frame 2+, not small mind you, but just right to solve the frame score problem.
In addition to the traits listed above, our cattle flesh easily on good forage (notice I wrote good forage; cattle can’t flesh on a bare pasture or on poor quality hay), typically breed back and live into their teens (if they ever miss a year they are culled) and do all of this on the 4 ingredients of grazing forage, water, salt and mineral. Our cattle graze year-round, we never have a planned hay feeding period. Our cows graze native grasses in the spring, summer and fall and are on cornstalks all winter. Our bulls and bred heifers live similarly but typically get some cover crops to graze during the year.
I am NOT a salesman. I can share our story and I can work with my children and hired men to produce what I believe are the best cattle to solve the toughest production problems in the industry…but it might take me awhile to return a phone call or email (texting is usually best).
If you are reading this, you are likely aware of Pharo Cattle Company. We were partners with PCC for about 13 years and our cattle came from cows owned by them (we leased their cows and kept the heifer calves as our share). So, if you like PCC cattle at, unfortunately for us, a significant discount I would urge you to take a look. Our bulls were some of the highest sellers during our time with PCC. Our bulls sell for significantly less now, no difference in quality, probably better, I’m just not as good a salesman. However, we do have something to offer that I believe is singularly unique in the cattle industry. For the past 3 years we have been using Ohlde Cattle Company semen during our A.I. project. OCC bulls used to sell in PCC sales and were the lead-off market toppers for Black Angus. We use OCC black and red angus and composite semen sires. OCC believes in many of the same philosophies and have cattle that are extremely impressive (if you know about PCC you probably know about OCC too). We have had the opportunity to combine the Best of Both Worlds, and the bulls and bred heifers we are selling in March are the first to be 50% OCC. By the eye test, it is overwhelmingly clear, the offering we have available is the best in our 15+ years in the seedstock industry.
So, I hope I haven’t been a salesman, or a marketer for that matter (moving on from childhood, telemarketers took the place of salesmen in my heart). I simply want to tell you the story of what we have. If you think we can help you solve your problems, please come take a look (we can arrange a personal tour just about anytime) before or during our upcoming sale. If not, peace to you!
Our sale will be held at our headquarters on March 13, 2020 at 11 am. It will go fast as we use a Cowboy Auction. This format keeps it from getting loud and we don’t wait around for bids. The bulls will sell first and start at a base price of $2000, the heifers will follow and start at $1200. We will be offering around 50 bulls and 75 bred heifers.
Oh, by the way, if you like Peloscows just print this off, consider it a speech…and delight in ripping it in two; I can’t solve your problems.
On a sad note: We learned this week that our friend Jim Madsen from Russell, Kansas passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. We got acquainted with Jim during our mutual time at PCC. The past few years I would see Jim a few times/year and we would solve all of the cattle industry and world’s problems. Jim, you will be missed.
Lanny Greenhalgh | Steward
[email protected] | (402) 984-6375
March 5, 2019
Our bull and bred heifer sale will be in 3 days, Lord willing, at 11 am here at our headquarters. We are 5 miles north of hwy 136 at 1900 and Road M, or, from hwy 78, 3 miles west on Road N then south one mile to M. Google will take you down Road M off of hwy 78 and west to our place, this will NOT work! If you have questions about directions, or anything, please email, text or give us a call to get things cleared up.
Food: You are welcome to enjoy a free, all you can eat hamburger meal on us at any time before, during or after the sale. We will also have beef dogs (custom made at our butcher shop NOT hot dogs) and a large selection of pop. My mom will be making potato salad and beans for sides. I’ve heard rumor that mom will also be making cinnamon rolls for breakfast before the sale. Dad will be on coffee. I don’t know how to make any of that!
The snow has been moved…now I would prefer it stays that way until sale day…and that no more falls. Do you want to feel better about how much snow you’ve had? Lake Tahoe has had over 400” of snow this season…no, didn’t make me feel any better either.
Our headquarters has 3 “U” shaped driveways which you will be able to park on. Every driveway, for the most part, has had the snow moved in such a way that there should be room for a vehicle/pickup/trailer and a free lane beside it. You will have to park off to the side of the driveway in order for this to be the case. There should be plenty of parking but we can help you find something if you don’t see any.
Corrections: To those of you who have helped us see our mistakes…thank you. If you notice others please bring them to our attention and we will aim to make the necessary corrections. The lead-off Hereford bull, lot #1, had the incorrect registration number and name and lots 2, 3, 4 and 5 had incorrect names. The website is now updated with the corrections. Anyone with a catalog will still have the mistakes. Please let us know if you have any questions regarding this.
Time…always tells the tale. I can’t get a handle on what to expect with the bulls. It seems there has been the most interest in the Herefords followed by the Red Angus then the Composites. As is typical, there is significant interest in the heifers. I’m still at the point where I’d rather have to sell 1000 heifers than 50 bulls. Our reputation is starting to grow and for that I am thankful, which means for our past and current customers I am thankful. Without you there is no reputation to grow.
God’s grace to all of you.
March 4, 2019
Preparations continue for the Ichthys Cattle Enterprise bull and bred heifer sale to be held at our headquarters on Friday, March 8 at 11 am. We are planning to have this sale regardless of weather. I met with our county road supervisor and he said they plan to have both access roads to our place, 1900 (off of Hwy 136) and Road N (off of Hwy 78) open if there is a storm.
If you are a new customer please visit with your bank account representative regarding an ACH transfer beforehand in the event you get some cattle purchased. An ACH is like a wire transfer but it doesn’t cost anything. We will be able to provide you with our account information at check-out so you can quickly authorize a payment. Thank you for your understanding regarding this situation.
Hauling Options: We have some very good news regarding hauling options. Craig Whisenhunt (803-682-4620), a commercial hauler from South Carolina, plans to be at our place on Saturday, March 16 with a 36’ stock trailer. The trailer has 3 dividing gates which make 4 compartments By then, the cattle that need to be hauled out of state should have their health papers ready to go. He is willing to accommodate, within reason, multiple parties who want to pay for hauling. Though I am willing to share contact information please know that the arrangements to haul and the hauling fee are between you and Craig, or whoever you make arrangements with. Please contact him as soon as convenient to speak for room on the trailer, it will be on a first come, first served basis. I know it is not possible to be exact when telling him precisely how many cattle you plan to buy. However, please don’t speak for the entire trailer if you really don’t plan to purchase that many. We are trying to help out as many customers as possible, we appreciate your cooperation.
Also, Mr. Jimmy Weathers (405-313-4070) from near Oklahoma City just off I-35 plans to purchase some cattle and may have room on a 22’ trailer to bring some back that far. He won’t be picking his up until the next week.
Also, Garth Lloyd, Arbela, MO with a 24’ trailer, 660-216-0366, also not picking up until the next week.
PLEASE, if you are planning to bring a trailer, to have room on the trailer and are willing to help someone with hauling, let me know and I will publish your name and number. I pursue win-win situations and if someone is willing to haul your cattle for an amount that is less than what it would be worth to you in your own time and expenses you get a win. The hauler gets a win if they can pay for all or part of their expenses doing this. If you are going to inquire of someone who can haul please don’t expect them to do it for nothing and I exhort you to be generous toward them for helping you…you might just make a new friend as well.
Sale format: We plan to use a Cowboy style auction in which bids will be called relatively slowly and you will be able to understand what the bid is. Each bidder who is at the sale will be issued a card with their bidder number. Once a lot opens for bidding you will hold your card in the air if you are interested in that lot and will keep it in the air until you no longer want the lot at that price or until all other cards are down. If you are the last person with a card in the air you own the animal. The DVAution representative will have a paddle with a “1” on a side and a “2+” on the other side. He will hold up the paddle with the appropriate side showing, if there are internet bids (if multiple bids a 2+, and a 1 if there is only one left). If he is the last one with the paddle in the air the internet buyer will own the animal. Our sight unseen bidding representative will also have a 2-sided paddle and will bid similarly to the DVAuction rep. If we have 2 or more SUS bids he will show the 2+ and if he only has one bid he will show a 1. We will also have some phone numbers available for phone bidding if someone has an internet connection not working. Please note, even though this is a Cowboy auction we believe we can sell animals FASTER this way. If a lot comes up for sale and there is no interest in the first few seconds we will move on, we do not beg 2 minutes for a bid. I expect us to be able to sell all 170+ lots in 2-3 hours, maybe much less. I don’t like having my time wasted and I assume you don’t either. Please let us know if you have any questions regarding the bidding process.
Note: Though this may sound strange, as long as there are 2 bidders still in the running for an animal, those two bidders are considered to be tied for the bid. You only win the bid on an animal if you are the last one holding up a card (or having the internet rep, SUS rep or phone bidder do it). If 2 bidders put down their card at the same time, and if neither one wants to raise their bid, the person with the LOWER card number (buyer number) wins the bid.
1. DVAuction proxy bidding is a great way to be a bit more relaxed during the sale (or not even watch the sale) and to ensure that you are bidding what you want to bid on the lots you want to bid on. If you go to this page: https://www.dvauction.com/events/88633/lots
and log in to their site you can place a proxy bid that will only rise to the amount needed to win the bid. I strongly urge you to consider this option if you are not going to be at the sale. I once had a good friend tell me he went to a farm sale looking to buy a combine and was willing to go up to $5000 to get the bid. He took the machine home for $12,000. Maybe a proxy bid would have saved him enough money to take his wife out to eat so he could explain how disciplined he is!? Proxy bidding will also help avert any internet connection problems you have during the sale. A perhaps: You could enter a proxy bid on every lot you are interested in then also be at the computer to use the click to bid if you get a similar itch as what my friend had. I won’t be disappointed if you bid more than your proxy!
2. Click to bid is available to those who want to bid online during the sale. As mentioned above you are welcome to enter a proxy bid but then change your mind to a higher amount with the click to bid.
3. Sight unseen (SUS) bidding: If you would like to submit your bids to us prior to the sale we will handle your bids with integrity. We will not bid higher than is necessary to get the animal.
4. Phone bidding: We will have some phone numbers available to use during the sale in case you have an internet problem.
5. In person, at the sale: We would love to see you and hope you can make it.
God’s grace to you and may we soon see some warmth to start growing some grass!
February 27, 2019
Please ask questions about the sale if you have them!
Been thinking about: It seems like it was cold in the winter when I was a kid, it even seems like it snowed once in awhile. Pretty sure I made some snowmen and slid on the pond ice. What I’m absolutely certain of is that I was not responsible for a few hundred head of cattle of all sorts of classes, throughout a cold and snowy winter.
As you are likely aware, we completely base our nutritional system on grazing. We don’t ever want to feed our cattle. Overwhelmingly, the only inputs our seedstock cattle ever get are grazing forage, water, salt and mineral. This is true not only of our cows but of our bulls and heifers developed for seedstock. We think this is very unique in the industry. Though hay is a legitimate forage source in a forage based system…it’s expensive…and it doesn’t require cattle to hustle for their existence. We believe grazing is the best way to sort cattle for what should be seedstock and what should be eaten. When grazing, the primary work consists of moving cattle to the forage, often by opening a gate. Though I in no way think it is immoral to feed cattle something other than forage (we fatten the majority of our slaughter beef using a corn mixture) I think bulls and bred heifers should be exclusively developed on forage (specifically grazing forage due not only to cost but to test feet/legs/etc.). I have been challenged to find others who only use the 4 ingredients we do. My friend, James Coffelt, follows this philosophy, he raises good black angus cattle in Ohio. https://www.farmprogress.com/livestock/ohio-cattleman-finds-success-unconventional-management-strategies
What is the point? Here is where pictures are worth far more than words. Our cattle have gone (and are going) through the toughest winter I can remember…exclusively on grazing forage, water, salt and mineral. I’m even starting to feel sorry for the momma cows who only have snow buried corn stalks to eat. Today I took a picture of a momma cow out searching for food. She looks very content and, in my opinion, in good condition (of course her brain might have evil thoughts toward me).