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Category Archives: Folks who help us out

’till the cows come home, and baby calves on the ground

Casey, Taylor and Chad supervising unloading the cows

Each winter, we send many of our cows to Laramie to be wintered by our friends, the Spieglebergs. They raise a lot of hay at their high altitude ranch and give great care to our cows. Now it is time for them to come home, so they are arriving, one truckload at a time.

In the meantime, we are seeing new calves on the ground. We’ve had some scary weather with high winds and low temperatures, but for the present, we have bare meadows, warmish days and nights, and a lot of fun overseeing the new babies.

coming home

Meanwhile, back at the mud puddle–Maura, McCoy and Tiarnan

Siobhan watching the cows cross the bridge, headed for the Lemmons pasture

Cows and baby calves in the Ames Field

Black baldie mama

hanging out in the Lemmons Place

 

 

 

To lamb or not to lamb, that is the question

If it’s March, it must be time to pregnancy test. We breed the best of our Rambouillet ewes to Rambouillet rams, thereby ensuring a new crop of replacement ewe lambs, as well as their brothers/cousins. Since purebred whiteface lambs are more vulnerable at birth, especially the twins, we pregnancy check the moms so that the ewes carrying twins can lamb in the sheds. The rest of the Rambouillet ewes are bred to our Hampshire rams. Their lambs have hybrid vigor and usually do fine with drop lambing on the range. Our friend Geri Parsons from Optimal Livestock Services comes up each March at mid-pregnancy to check the ewes and call out “single”, “twins”, “open” and even “triplets”. Meghan and her crew appropriately marked the ewes with a paint dab on their heads to signify their status for later sorting. Geri usually braves chill winds and long drives for several days to accomplish this task. Here’s some photos of this year’s pregnancy checking.

Ewes, waiting for the verdict

Pepe at the chute, Geri’s office in the tent

 

It was REALLY MUDDY!!!

Chris bringing up the ewes

Pregnancy testing crew–Sam the Border collie, Modesto, Maeve, Meghan, Pepe, Tiarnan, Geri, Chris

 

the view from Eagle’s Nest, looking east

 

 

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February Thaw

Lemmons Meadow

Lemmons Meadow.

 

It’s been a weird winter so far. We’ve had lots of snow, lots of thawing, and a lot of bare ground for February. The critters are glad for the warmer temperatures.

cows with puddles

cows with puddles

Bucks in the Mouse Pasture

Bucks in the Mouse Pasture

horses in the Wyoming Field

horses in the Wyoming Field

Casey training horses

Casey training horses

 

 
 

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Adios, old year

from our Christmas tree

from our Christmas tree

New Year’s Eve morning dawned bright and clear. We had a huge pile of wood to burn from an old building we had taken down. We had livestock to tend, bucks to work, and resolutions to make.

 

Ewes on winter pasture

Ewes on winter pasture

Adopted wild horses eating hay at sheep camp

Adopted wild horses eating hay at sheep camp

Hampshire buck saying "Put me in, Coach!"

Hampshire buck saying “Put me in, Coach!”

Bringing the bucks up the chute

Bringing the bucks up the chute

The All-Girl sheep moving crew--Taylor, Siobhan and Meghan

The All-Girl sheep moving crew–Taylor, Siobhan and Meghan

Meghan and Pat sorting

Meghan and Pat sorting

Rambouillet ram out the cutting gate

Rambouillet ram out the cutting gate

Meghan, Siobhan and Taylor with the bucks

Meghan, Siobhan and Taylor with the bucks

McCoy checking things out

McCoy checking things out

Pat, with his fire-tending assistants--Seamus, McCoy, Tiarnan, Rhen and Maeve

Pat, with his fire-tending assistants–Seamus, McCoy, Tiarnan, Rhen and Maeve

Sharon with the fire-tending crew (McCoy un-photo bombed)

Sharon with the fire-tending crew (McCoy un-photo bombed)

Maeve, Seaus and Meghan

Maeve, Seamus and Meghan

Out with the old, in with the new

Out with the old, in with the new

Horses grazing with the last sunset of 2016

Horses grazing with the last sunset of 2016

 

 

 

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Separating the bulls from the boys

Pat in the sorting chute

Pat in the sorting chute

 

It is time to chose our future bulls out of the contenders. The bull calves have grown out, and we looked at them with a critical eye. The best of them will grow up to be bulls and to sire our future calves. It was a big day for them, since they also had to leave their mamas and be weaned. As you can see, we finally have snow on the ground and temperatures have dropped–a lot!

Eamon with help from Chica, Belle and Gramps

Eamon with help from Chica, Belle and Gramps

Eamon, Casey and Meghan with the calves

Eamon, Casey and Meghan with the calves

Meghan, Eamon and Chica

Meghan, Eamon and Chica

Pat and Eamon with calves

Pat and Eamon with calves

 

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This fall when the work’s all done…

Cows and calves in the Lower Meadow

Cows and calves in the Lower Meadow

It’s that time of year when we bring in the livestock–the cows and calves, the ewes and lambs–the time when we finish our summer’s work and prepare for the winter season. We sell most of the calves, and send many  of the cows to less snowy pastures for the winter. Some of the cows will go to our friends’ ranch near Laramie (where the snow is horizontal rather than vertical), Some will go to Nebraska. This means we bring them all in to the Home Ranch, work them, and load some of them on trucks.

First, we need horses

First, we need horses

Ready to bring them in

Ready to bring them in

And we need a crew--Eamon

And we need a crew–Eamon

Meghan and Peruanito

Meghan and Peruanito

Siobhan and Taylor

Siobhan and Taylor

McCoy checking things out

McCoy checking things out

Rhen on the job

Rhen on the job

Megan and Jeff

Megan and Jeff

 

Our neighbor John may be a belts and suspenders kind-of-guy

Our neighbor John may be a belts and suspenders kind-of-guy

calf on the lookout

calf on the lookout

ready to load

ready to load

Rhen supervising the truck

Rhen supervising the truck

Eamon watching the calves

Eamon watching the calves

 

 

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Minnesota Bound

Thinking about lower country

Thinking about lower country

Every fall, we have what we call “the good old ewes.”  These ewes are still sound, but aren’t quite up for another winter on the Red Desert. They are Minnesota bound. Sheep producers around Pipestone can offer them a comfier life at a lower altitude, with more shelter. They will be able to produce lambs and wool for several more years.

Pepe, Edgar and Raylor bringing up the ewes

Pepe, Edgar and Taylor bringing up the ewes

Meghan at the cutting gate

Meghan at the cutting gate

Ned, the brand inspector, and the trucker, loading.

Ned, the brand inspector, and the trucker, loading.

Now underemployed Guard Dog

Now underemployed Guard Dog

Meghan and Ned

Meghan and Ned

Ready to roll

Ready to roll

 

 

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