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Ann Britton Outback Photography

Bought Cattle from Jericho

#BossMan bought cattle from Jericho, earlier in the year, we trucked them to Lucknow 21 March and the first mob to Goodwood on the 22 March.
The ones that were dropped off at Lucknow were processed and put in their rightful paddock.
The 847 cows and weaners that were brought separately to Goodwood had to be boxed together again (they were drafted at their Jericho home and trucked separated from Jericho) before processing here because it started to rain after their arrival.
The last lot of the cattle arrived on the 24 March and it started raining on the 25 March. Tremendous follow up to our rain and flood in February.
YouTube of the cloud and strong wind on the afternoon of the 25 March

The Queensland Country Life headlines read Ex-Tropical cyclone Trevor brings good rain to the far west
In the early hours of the 29 March, the flood peaked at Goodwood, from the rain we had here and the wonderful rain received further north.

4.30am 29 March Goodwood

You can see the cattle yards in the background of both these photos. Hence why the decision was made to box the cattle again, meaning the weaners were let go with the cows. There was enough feed in the house paddock from the February rain to sustain them. We couldn’t truck them because of the rain. We couldn’t let them into the Sandy Paddock named such because of the Sandy Channel in it as we knew there was a flood coming. They couldn’t be held in the Horse Paddock as it was too small to hold cattle for any length of time with the amount of feed in it.

Some of the weaners thought the House yard was a good place to have a feed during the rain and the flood.
Move forward 5 weeks, where during this time #BossMan, Tojo, Claire, and Ben have been doing fencing due to the floods when they are able to get to the fences. The mozzies and flies have visited in their 1000s. The crew, while fencing, have tried all different repellents, changing often, to try and be a bit comfortable while dealing with wire, debris, fences no where near where they should be, or no fence at all and if in the channels most likely no wind to help combat the visitors. Yes we are very very grateful for the rain and flood, and yes we knew there would be sandflies and mozzies,  it is just they are as thick as flies, 24/7.
I have tried all sorts of things to help the chooks re mozzies and Junior has now become a full-time house dog, due to mozzies and flies.
Any how….. 30th April, time to muster the House Paddock where the bought Jericho cows and weaners have been living for the last month, unprocessed. Meaning the cows haven’t been cross-branded. These cattle were sold because the Jericho property they come from had no feed left and considering it was coming to the end of March the owners decided to sell.

A “not very old” bull calf, to one of the smaller cows in the mob, she is a good Mum.

Peek a boo, I see you amongst all the legs of the mob. Can you imagine the view this little one has in a mob like this, but his mother kept him close and was watching over him like a hawk.

Sorry for the dirty windscreen.
I took a while to write this next paragraph. What is normal to me, reworking cattle and how to explain it or how much I should explain, so as not to confuse you reading it, took some time. So I hope you understand, and please ask any questions if you need clarification on anything.
We don’t normally have a mob this big to be yarded into our Goodwood cattle yards.
This (photo) is all the bought cattle in the laneway before the yards, all 847 of them.
These cattle are not familiar to being handled by motorbike or vehicles. They are accustomed to being choppered into laneways and moved along the laneway with the chopper and into the yards, right up to the drafting pens. A person in a vehicle would close the gates on the cattle once the chopper got them in the yard. Everyone musters differently, to suit their property and business. One size does not fit all. Not one way is true, correct, right but all can be best animal welfare practice.
I’m just explaining so as you understand why we are doing what we are doing with these cattle and what is usual for them.
So we are treating them a little differently to how we would treat our normal mob of cattle, and totally different from what is normal for the cows in this mob.
We gave them room to learn, but not giving them room to do as they want either.
We don’t normally need 3 bikes and 3 vehicles to yard up. Holding them together in the laneway until the lead started moving off into the yard. We respect that they don’t know any different but the cattle have to learn that this is the way they will be mustered from now on with us. They most likely will never be mustered, handled, drafted in a mob this big again either while they are in our care. We don’t want them to feel scared or get hurt. Cattle aren’t stupid, they just need time to think and learn with space to do it in.
When the cattle were nearly in the yard, with just the last few to guide in, the crew hopped off their bikes, and out of their vehicles, and we were on foot to put them through the pens to the back yard where they were left to settle and mother up, while the crew had a feed of steak I cooked them while they mustered. I went off to The Waddi Tree for a couple of hours.
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Yummy steak and Junior at the Waddi Tree
When I returned home from town I took Dame Drone down to the yards to get some footage of the drafting, since the wind was favourable

Claire on the platform using the sticks to open the two gates used for the cows. One for the younger cows and one for the older cows. Ben is on the weaner gate as there is no stick attached to that yard. Kimberly is tallying as the cattle go through counting the older and younger cows and weaners (and possibly maybe the calves too) Dakota is in her pram with food, water, and toys under a fly net.

Birdseye view of the drafting area.

A panorama that was taken from Dame Drone

Some of the weaners were shifted to another pen straight after I finished droning. The cows were let out into separate paddocks when drafting finished.

Hard to believe that on the 1 May, the very next day, we measured 24mm of rain. The cattle work had to be altered and once again the processing of these bought cattle was interrupted by rain.
How very blessed we are, amazingly so.
3 May 33mm is our total till 9am this morning and Mudgeacca 28.5mm over the same period.

Just a footnote for those that are interested: #BossMan’s strategy in buying these cattle.
The older cattle will be calved out, (meaning if they have a calf at foot or in calf they will raise that calf) there will be no bulls put with these cows, they will be fattened up (after their calf is weaned) and moved on. Either to the sale yards, meat works or another owner wanting to use them as breeders. The younger cattle kept as they make a good line of cows.  The older cows are too, but you have to have a management plan for the welfare of the cattle and our business. We have enough natural feed to keep all of them for some time. The market and time will determine what happens to the weaners. They could be all sold now as they are, for someone to grow out the males and for the heifers to grow and become breeders. But we are in a very blessed position to keep them all and sell them on at the opportune time for our business.

Just to add to this, what is normal for us, a lot of the time, is that we have to accept what the market is and sell regardless if it looks like we aren’t going to get a wet season and have to lighten off, as we don’t have an annual rainfall.
We aren’t market price makers, we are price takers. So if we have a chance to have an upper hand on the market, it is a sweet feeling. A good reason to put up with mozzies and flies.

 

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