Tired of the Bullogna

We don’t have all of our major fall work done. There are still cows to preg test and calves to wean, but we are doing less haying and irrigating so there have been some chances to work on other projects. One that I have been wanting to do all summer is fix a feed rack.

This particular feed rack is a problem because it was designed for horses, but it has been used primarily for bulls over the last several years. We don’t keep horses there very often just because there is a more convenient corral and barn setup for them. This corral has high, stout fences and is easy for feeding bulls so it’s a natural choice for them.

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Generally, we try to keep our bulls on pasture so we don’t have the cost of feeding them hay all of the time. This works for the most part, however, after they have been pulled out of the cows some of them get lonely or maybe they just like the grass in our neighbors hay fields better. If it isn’t an escaped bull, maybe new bulls that we want to settle down before we turn them out. Right now it is young bulls that we want to have on better hay. Whatever the reason, it seems like there is consistently a reason for a bull to be in this set of corrals.

Unfortunately, bulls are a little harder on things than horses. Not necessarily because they are aggressive or obnoxious, but bulls don’t always realize how powerful they are. Maybe they just don’t care… Regardless, the problem is that a bull in this corral gets bored. They can see the bales of hay that I haven’t fed. Even if I have fed them plenty of hay, they would rather pick through what I didn’t feed them to get the softest, most delicious pieces of hay that reside on the other side of the feed rack. And generally, when a bull wants to do something, he does it.

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Do you see the bent pipes on the back side of the feed rack? That was a previous attempt to discourage them from climbing into the feed rack or, at the very least, clear into the hay shed. The bulls thought that it meant they were allowed to stand in the feed rack and reach their heads under the shed to eat. This is why the pipes are bent and why there was only one half of a board on the front side of the feed rack when I began this project.

 The “finished for the day” product.

The “finished for the day” product.

So my new plan is a set of pipes on the front of the rack, bracketed to the posts on each end. Another pipe was added above to these to discourage jumping into the feed rack with a support in the middle to help keep it from being bent by the sheer power of a bull eating hay. This is as far as I managed to get, but I do have at least one more pipe to add to keep them out of the rack and if I lose hay between the three bottom pipes, I will have to add some more in there. Hopefully, they get the message and stop breaking this, but only time, and bulls, will tell.

 The young bulls testing it out.

The young bulls testing it out.

I had a couple more pictures that I wanted to share. My brother and I helped our neighbors ship their calves today. While it was a warm 41 degrees when we left home at 6:00 this morning, the fog was set in and it was cold on the mountain. The mist was freezing to everything including the grass and it made it quite beautiful. The day went very well and I am very glad to have the neighbors that we do.

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by Brandon Greet

Also, if you are thinking about ordering beef on this next delivery, please get in touch because you are almost out of time! Remember we deliver to the Big Horn Basin, Gillette, Sheridan, and Casper areas.

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