In late May, all cow and calf pairs that have birthed are removed from the calving pastures and they receive their first vaccinations, it is important that to note that these are not antibiotics but vaccines to prevent harmful conditions (similar to the flu shot in humans). The herd is then turned to pasture where they are managed with intensive rotational grazing for the summer months and watered using portable water systems when possible to alleviate damage on riparian areas such as creeks, rivers, and dugouts.
They are managed in an intensive grazing style to maximise organic matter in small areas and control forage and weeds. Much of this is accomplished using portable electric fence that is easily set up to grid pastures that are perimeter fenced with high-tensile electric fence. Electric fence is used as a humane and more efficient substitute to barbwire. Barbwire can cause damage to animals through threats of cuts or contracting tetanus as well as other problems.
The animals are then rounded up once more in September at the beginning of the month where they receive booster shots. At this time the bull calves are castrated using banding techniques to reduce stress.Mid Life
The herd then grazes until the second week of October the cows and
calves are then separated. The calves are kept on ranch for winter back
grounding. The animals never receive hormones and 99% of them never need
antibiotics. While the animals are being back grounded they receive a specific
type of ration as well as hay. The ration made up of Grain Screenings, Canola
Meal, Trace Minerals and Peas. What are Grain Screenings? They are the hull and
germ of the grain that is removed before the grain is used in either human or
animal food. The benefits of screening are often overlooked but are a very
usable and healthy source of protein and fibre. When mixed with Canola Meal and
Peas it produces a good protein supplement to the energy that the calves
receive in their hay. The energy of this ration is different than the ones used
to finish animals in the feedlot as there is practically no grain in it meaning
that it does not lead to acidosis or such extreme declines in the healthiness
of the fats in the meat of the animals.
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