Monday, 29 October 2012
A Trip to Brussels Livestock
These 3 sweet calves were born in the spring of 2011.....along with 49 others. That summer they were put out on the pasture grass with their mothers. Then they were weaned in the fall and spent the winter in our barnyard. We fed them hay and some grain. They were put back out on the pasture grass this spring (2012). They gained a good amount of weight and they were 'ready to go' last Thursday.
We hired my Uncle Dean's trucking company to transport them to Brussels Livestock Sales Barn. They left early Thursday morning and they were fed and watered at the sales barn until the sale on Friday.
Terry and the boys make the annual trip to see the sale. They left early Friday morning with 2 other local farmers. One being a neighbour of ours that also sent cattle to the sale. This trip is something the boys really look forward too. The men are good company...they tell lots of great stories and they are very entertaining. I should hope so....it's a 7 hour drive to Brussels!
On this particular sale day there were 2400 head of cattle being sold (52 of those were ours). Bidders at the auction receive a print out of the sellers names, how many head they have for sale, what vaccinations the cattle have received and what kind, if they have been castrated and how, and if they were just taken off grass. All of these things somewhat influence the value of the cattle and their price.
Then the cattle of each seller are put in groups. Not all 52 of ours were sold together. They were grouped by their sex (steers or heifers) and by their breed. Our cattle were put into 7 groups....with 7 different buyers. Actually, I just looked at the sheet and one buyer bought 2 of our groups.
The buyers were other farmers that will 'finish' the year olds. They will feed them grain for a few months and then resell them to the packing plants.
Because the price of grain has increased so much in the last year, the price that we received this year was lower than the price last year. But we were satisfied with what we received.
The boys had a great day....shopping at the farm store, watching the other farmers, checking out the Mennonite carriages, visiting with a relative that lives there, eating at the restaurants...
Since the boys were away for the day, we farm girls did what all farm girls do when the boys are away....
We did the chores.
oh yeah....and we ate bacon and drank milkshakes and made chocolate brownie cookies and covered them with icing and sprinkles.