Info As Requested

We have had several calls regarding the bulls we have available in the bull pen. The last five have been growing steadily and all but one are now over a year old and each are ready to take on a herd of their own. They range in weight from 800 pounds to 1400 pounds and are all good eaters.

The bulls we have left are #37 Bluff (sired by Renaissance), #39 Rudy (sired by Prowler), #41 Bo Bridges (sired by Renaissance), #42 Big Wheel (sired by Prowler), and #44 Boggle (sired by Prowler). Boggle is the only one not quite a year old yet, he will turn one year next month.

Mike has all the registration paperwork on each of the bulls and can give the EPD information to callers or American Angus Association registration numbers for those who want to view online.

You gotta see the pictures! They are posted with this story on SchmidlinAngusFarms.com. While you are there, if there is any online shopping you plan on doing, please go through my picture links. By doing so, I get credit for directing people to browse and may make a small commission without a charge to you! The commissions help pay for my user charges for this site, Thank You for supporting the farm stories.

I am delighted to announce that the new book by MaryJane Nordgren, Nandria’s War, is available to the public and can be purchased through my website, SchmidlinAngusFarms.com!  And is now available on Kindle also.

From Around The Corner

When I don’t have other pressing chores to do, I wander out to the bull barn to spend quality time listening to an audio book while bundling firewood for the next round of deliveries. Sometimes it is only an hour or two, other times, especially when I get to a very interesting part of the book or if I need to make sure I have enough supply for the next load, or if I need to get a crib emptied so it can be filled again with split wood from across the river, or if I’m trying to avoid other necessary chores, I can spend several hours puttering along in the barn.

I have great views out the open end of this barn. I can spot the bald eagles when they decide to sit in the far fir trees and chatter back and forth with each other while they guard the river flowing beneath them. Views of the show barn critters can be spotted as they graze the pasture or lounge in the wooded area. Pegleg the cat meanders through the barn with her whispered meows as she pokes around the equipment for a tasty mouse but usually tires of the game since she rarely finds anything (she keeps the supply down considerably with her daily hunting routes).

The bulls of the bull barn and surrounding pastures usually don’t pay any attention to me unless it is mealtime, then they will line up at their manger in the hopes that I throw in some hay or grain to begin the meal. There is an exception to the bulls noticing when I am in the barn and that is #41 Bo Bridges. The first time we encountered Bo the calf, we found tucked under the sloped end of the bridge taking a nap while his mother grazed a ways away from the comfortable bed he had found.

Now Bo is over a year old and typically hangs right with the other bulls in the big pen, except when I am in the barn bundling. Bo likes to stand right at the edge of the open end of the barn and watch my technique. He doesn’t make a fuss or move around a lot, he just stands there chewing his cud and observes my procedures while the rest of the bulls hang out along the fenceline or under the trees at the far end of the pasture.

You gotta see the pictures! They are posted with this story on SchmidlinAngusFarms.com. While you are there, if there is any online shopping you plan on doing, please go through my picture links. By doing so, I get credit for directing people to browse and may make a small commission without a charge to you! The commissions help pay for my user charges for this site, Thank You for supporting the farm stories.

I am delighted to announce that the new book by MaryJane Nordgren, Nandria’s War, is available to the public and can be purchased through my website, SchmidlinAngusFarms.com!  And is now available on Kindle also.

For And Aft

Our newest cow to deliver, Scooter, has brought her baby closer to incorporating into the main herd. But she is still wary that the other calves will pick on her little Vespa so she hides her around the brushy fence lines while she grazes, goes for water or eats hay. This tendency will only last a couple of days until Vespa is strong enough to join in with the gang of calves that cavort around the field. Until that happens, we go in search of the calf at every feeding to check up on her, make sure she has been nursing, and that she had not somehow gotten herself stuck on the wrong side of the fence surrounding the field.

There are dangers being on the outskirts of the herd. The river is just beyond the fence and riparian area and we have lost calves before who have wandered too close to the edge and have fallen. The coyotes hang around the fields in hopes of finding tender newborns, they wait for the mothers to become inattentive or temporarily when they temporarily misplace their babies. Or a calf could just simply lay down for a nap close to the fence and when they try to stand up, slip under the bottom wire and end up on the wrong side.

A whole lot of commotion breaks out when a new mother is not able to get to her new calf on the other side of a barb wire fence. All the calves run to see what is going on, the mothers all run in an attempt to corral their little ones. Babies are crying for their mothers and mothers are bellowing back. When all the hoop-la is going on it is easy to find where the wrong-side-of-the-fence baby is located. When the baby is sleeping, we have to guess where the mother put the baby down for a rest and begin searching the brushy growths along the fences.

It is amazing how small a newborn can look when curled up. Babies can set themselves into a small depression and nearly disappear from view, add buck brush, snowberry and wild rose bushes and the calf can be invisible.

It was Mike who spotted an area in the fenceline from across the hayfield that looked suspicious and a good spot for a calf. Quietly we walked along the fence so we didn’t spook the sleeping newborn if she was indeed in there. It was much easier to see the little pile of calf from the wrong side of the fence rather than the right side of the fence.

Startling a sleeping baby is not a good thing to do since they usually bolt and run the wrong direction. I nearly walked right up to the baby before I saw her in the middle of the brush on the wrong side of the fence. I gently woke her up by stroking her back and murmuring softly. When she started to wake, I urged her to stand up. The fence was too low in this spot for her to get back over to the other side so I had to coax her to walk along the fence before finding a spot where I could lift the barb wire enough for her to get back to her mother. By that time the whole herd was there along the fence and the noise was tremendous.

All is well now that we have Vespa reunited with her mother.

You gotta see the pictures of the happy family! They are posted with this story on SchmidlinAngusFarms.com. While you are there, if there is any online shopping you plan on doing, please go through my picture links. By doing so, I get credit for directing people to browse and may make a small commission without a charge to you! The commissions help pay for my user charges for this site, Thank You for supporting the farm stories.

I am delighted to announce that the new book by MaryJane Nordgren, Nandria’s War, is available to the public and can be purchased through my website, SchmidlinAngusFarms.com!  And is now available on Kindle also.

 

#35 Scooter And Vespa

We had been watching Scooter because she looked close to calving. During the morning feeding she was in the middle of the main herd eating like the rest of them. During the day, Mike noticed her moving away from the herd toward the spring at the far back end of the field. Scooter headed for water wouldn’t have seemed different from the many trips the cattle take either individually  or in groups heading for the water source, but the way she walked with an urgency and her tail slightly elevated gave clues that she was about to deliver.

Moving away from the herd to give birth is common and especially smart during this time where our little trouble maker, KAOS the bull, has been picking on newborns. We avoided checking on Scooter for a couple of hours so we did not spook her too far uphill where it would be harder to help if need be. By the time we did go looking beginning at the last spot Mike saw her heading, we found Scooter and her newborn comfortable under some big fir trees beyond the spring. Scooter had found a safe spot from the bothersome KAOS and all the other critters of the herd.

Welcome to the farm SAF Vespa, born 3/27/2020 a sweet little heifer weighing in at 72 lbs.

All the farm stories with pictures and recipes can be found at SchmidlinAngusFarms.com. While you are there, if there is any online shopping you plan on doing, please go through my picture links. By doing so, I get credit for directing people to browse and may make a small commission without a charge to you! The commissions help pay for my user charges for this site, Thank You for supporting the farm stories.

I am delighted to announce that the new book by MaryJane Nordgren, Nandria’s War, is available to the public and can be purchased through my website, SchmidlinAngusFarms.com!  And is now available on Kindle also.

Water Water Everywhere

It doesn’t seem right that after a good drenching of rain during the night totaling about three quarters of an inch, I would have a post about plumbing and more specifically about not one but two different water sources at the same time. Yet here is the story that is going on today.

Our well for the house normally supplies us with the absolute best drinking drinking water. In order for it to be the best, the water coming out of the ground needs a little tweaking. It goes through filtration and osmosis before traveling a complex system that adds pH back to the water that was taken out during filtration. A couple of weeks ago, we noticed a small leak surrounding a pump that does the initial filtration. Looking into fixing it ourselves (meaning Mike) we  realized it was much more complex than we (again Mike) could not do the repairs.

While we were waiting on the parts to come in so our local water gurus, HPS (Hillsboro Pump and Supply) could do the repairs, the irrigation suction started having issues. For some reason we  (you guessed it, Mike again) was unable to keep a prime for the pump and it would lose suction resulting in no water pressure. After an afternoon of using the pitcher-pump like handle to manually bring water up to pump and losing prime over and over, we (this time both of us) had to dismantle the suction pipe from the pump to the water source, clean and straighten it before we could reconnect to get the equipment back to fully functional. This was just in time for all the rain and nature filled the stock tanks for us.

Currently, with the cattle tanks all filled, now we just have to have the repairs finished in the pump house for the domestic water use for us humans to have everything back to normal. Until something else breaks…

All the farm stories with pictures and recipes can be found at SchmidlinAngusFarms.com. While you are there, if there is any online shopping you plan on doing, please go through my picture links. By doing so, I get credit for directing people to browse and may make a small commission without a charge to you! The commissions help pay for my user charges for this site, Thank You for supporting the farm stories.

I am delighted to announce that the new book by MaryJane Nordgren, Nandria’s War, is available to the public and can be purchased through my website, SchmidlinAngusFarms.com!  And is now available on Kindle also.

Not A Joke

For those who have been readers for several years, this story will seem very familiar but revisiting now and again is good for my mental health, along with a glimpse into human behavior. But first I will have to set up the scene…

Our farm is rural. The area is located near the edge of the county, at the end of the school district, on the outskirts of fire districts, either at the beginning of the electricity from the sub-station or the end depending on which way the circuit of power is circling toward town, and at the end of the mail route.  For many years, once we really had phone service, we were long distance to all but our little town. Calls made to the Junction less than two miles the opposite direction from the farm were considered long distance. The County Sheriff jokes that we are the “West Ender’s” and that nothing much happens this far out. I have always quipped that I live at the end of civilization as we know it. Continue reading

What Day Is It

As I check in on family, friends, loved ones, acquaintances, and customers, I keep hearing the phrase ‘what day is it’? It’s as if once the daily routine of our lives changes, our sense of time alters. I have noticed this in the past when taking a few days away from the farm, the change of routine while seeing new sights doesn’t kick in because there are other demands like being on time for planned excursions like car rentals, hotel stays, vista views, etc. It is when I return home when I notice that my internal clock is skewed, my nights don’t seem restful and my days are unsettled. It takes me time to get back to my normal routine, sometimes it is just a day but it usually takes more than that for my internal metronome to get clicking on a regular basis.

With this new experience of sheltering in place,  people I talk or computer chat to, are in that unbalanced state. Days of the week seem condensed or stretched, sometimes at the same time!

So I figured I would give you the day of the week in cattle-speak…today is dirt day. Dirt day is the holiday for the main herd when we move them to a new area that has new smells and the opportunity to get down and rub to their hearts content. The dirt the herd found on this day was near the side-hill where we fed them their breakfast. The calves, ranging from a couple days old to several months of age happily joined their mothers in the cut of the skid road where the logs are dragged off the hillside to the landing.

Within an hour, nearly every member of the main herd had a smear of dirt on their legs, heads, necks and backsides.

Welcome to dirt day, I hope this story finds you able to find your balance with a bit of soil.

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I am so pleased to announce that MaryJane Nordgren has made her new book available to the public! Click here for your copy of Nandria’s War.