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Morning with the steers

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I'm happy because I'm spending the morning with my steers. Often I'm in town selling, marketing, and doing other administrative stuff, so time outside with the steers is always a treat. This morning I moved the steers from one pasture to another and met a young man who's going to shred some weeds for us. We hope shredding the weeds will allow the grasses underneath to grow better. It's what the landowners have done here in the past, and the theory was confirmed for us in a Stockman Grass Farmer article.

 

When I arrived to move the steers, I expected them to be pretty excited to move. The like getting to the fresh grass on the other side of the fence.

The first group (about half the herd) followed me right through the gate.

The other half would have, but they were stuck, by their own doing, in the corner of an adjacent paddock. They wanted to follow their buddies, but they had gotten as far as they could. They just stood there looking longingly across the fence, bellowing sadly. After I'd moved the first group, I went back for the others. It's a little hard to explain in words, so I drew a little map to show how the sad steers were stuck. It was tricky to explain to the steers that they had to move away from their friends to eventually reach them. I explained a few times that although it was counterintuitive in the short term, they'd understand as soon as they reached the gate of the little paddock they were in. Eventually I got through to them, and they made for the gate. Once they got there, Dog Face understood the situation (Dog Face is the smart one, sometimes too smart for his own good (fence jumper)), and took off running to the gate with everyone else in pursuit. "I told you so," I said as they left me in their dust. Now they're in a grassier paddock, super happy and hard at work. Actually, not everyone, because ##23 and 20 (sin eartag; it fell off) were very intrigued by me sitting under the a tree writing this recap. And each steer's bird friend joined him once they reached the new pasture. Usually each steers has one or two white bird friends while grazing; I've heard these birds help control the flies, so that's good. Plus, I love inter-species friendships.

 

map-copy.jpg richard-and-23-with-bird-friends-copy.jpg how-close-20-got-copy.jpg
Map showing sad steers in corner Steers with bird friends # 20 was very curious about me