Farm to Table

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Ruthie (heifer, on the left – that’s momma on the right) got loaded up and hauled to the locker this evening, and they’ll harvest her in the morning.

She was born (with a little assist from me) right before Thanksgiving, 2015.

It took a number of months, but I finally got where I could pet her, and then she got where she almost expected a good neck rub when I came out to do morning chores. As she got bigger, I was always mindful of stories I’ve heard of guys getting injured or killed by a “pet” livestock animal, so I’ve always been careful around her.

About six weeks ago, I backed the stock trailer up to the gate with the door open, and started throwing a flake of my best alfalfa up in the front. It took a day or two before she’d step in to get it, and it quickly became natural to her to be in the trailer. I have a loading chute, but it predates our time on the farm and is pretty rotted out.

Trying to shoo a cow into an unfamiliar trailer the day you need to take her to the locker is not exactly easy work (don’t ask).

All that gentling and trailer familiarization paid off this afternoon, because she pretty much loaded herself. Smile

We still have the cow, but she remained open when we had her serviced last Spring. Not sure if I’m going to try again, or just feed her out on pasture and turn her into hamburger come Autumn.

Postscript – they did the slaughter this morning, and the hanging weight (two sides of beef) ended up being 861 lbs. Once processed into our desired cuts, the take-home weight will be about 60% of that (about 516 lbs). If you were to buy that at an average of $6.00/lb, that’s about $3,100 worth of beef.