To sell or not to?

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by kenojoe, Dec 14, 2004.

  1. kenojoe

    kenojoe Guest

    I have six cows with calves (aprrox.6-7 months old). I was unable to get the cows bred back when I should have. Now it's December and I'm finally able to get rid of the calves and get them bred back. My question is would I be better off to sell all of them now and buy six cows that are bred back for spring? I have enough hay to feed them for another month or so and thought I might be better off getting them sold when the hay runs out. I have access to plenty of hay, thats not aproblem. Seems to me if I keep the cows and get them bred back now, I'll have 6 cows to feed for 9 months with all cost. I would rather have calves in the spring so the mothers nutritional needs are taken care of by pasture. What would you do to come out best money wise. These cows are mixed not purebreed beef. Thanks for any advice.
     
  2. Haggis

    Haggis MacCurmudgeon

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    An aquaintance of mine just got back from an auction barn. He told me that he saw 3 Highland calves go through the ring and not even get a bid. When the 3 cows went through the ring they brought $300. That's $300 for the 3 cows; not each.

    He was going to take my cows to sell and make money from me for hauling them, but talked me into keeping, treating, and AI'ing them for a calf in late fall; he even offered to loan me a portable squeeze. After they calve I will turn them into hamburger and be rid of their virus.

    Not the way I wanted to go with these cows, but I had rather keep them for next year's burger than give them away.

    In this case, it's the horns; Highland cattle have horns and my Milking Devons have horns. No one wants horned cattle in commercial herds so they will only bring what someone looking to butcher them will pay.
     

  3. trickham

    trickham Well-Known Member

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    Since these are mixed breed cows and probably not anything spectacular, yes, I think you would probably be better off selling now and buying new cows in the spring. If they were special purebred genetics or something, it would be a different answer. But with just plain old cows, you would be better off selling now.

    Nick
     
  4. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    An open cow at the sale barn will go for slaughter prices as everyone will assume that there is something wrong with it. You will need to compare your feed costs vs. what you'll get out of the cows now vs. replacement costs.

    Jena
     
  5. jim/se kansas

    jim/se kansas Well-Known Member

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    Yesterday at the Cattle Auction open cows were bringing .50 to .54 cents a pound. Some were open and older 1st and 2nd stage cows were the same. 3 to 6 year old cows 1st to 3rd stage were bringing $800.. to 1,000.00 each. Cows like this will bring more in the spring. It's not to late to put a bull with you cows for fall calves. I just put mine in with the cows about a week ago.
    Hope this helps. Jim
     
  6. Mel-

    Mel- Well-Known Member

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    my brother just sent his two two year old angus heifers to auction and got 74 cents a pound for them. never been bred for no other reason than he has no experience, doesn't live where they did (in the pasture next to my house) and needed the money. they totalled 2200 pounds for the two. I was sorry to see them go, especially sorry to see them killed.

    have no idea if this was a good price or not but seemed a shame they were killed instead of bred.
     
  7. trickham

    trickham Well-Known Member

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    Did they go to the auction or directly to the slaughter house? If they went to the auction there is no telling whether they went to slaughter or if they went in somebody's personal herd. My guess would be that at 2 years old, if they looked decent, they probably went in somebody's herd.

    Nick
     
  8. Mel-

    Mel- Well-Known Member

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    nick,

    I hope so, I hate to admit I got attached to them. they went to an auction house.

    I have no idea if they looked good or not but they looked good and healthy to me. they were in my pasture almost a year and were never sick or anything, a little scours in the spring from pigging out on the fresh grass. and they regularly came into heat all summer, annoying the heck out of me ;) one or the other always seemed to be bellowing!
     
  9. genebo

    genebo Well-Known Member Supporter

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    A man near me sent a Dexter cow to the auction house. She was 12 years old, but still breeding. He didn't live there, didn't know much about Dexters. He got 60 cents a pound. She was slaughtered.

    Somebody got some good beef for a small price. I called him with an offer for the cow a month later and found out she was gone. She had an excellent pedigree, but he didn't know it. He was dissappointed to have sold her so cheaply.

    I was sad to see her go.

    Genebo
    Paradise Farm
     
  10. trickham

    trickham Well-Known Member

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    There are always people at the auctions looking for good herd cows. I bet that's what happened to them. :)

    Nick
     
  11. opus

    opus Well-Known Member

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    Sell them! The cow market is very good now, so long as they arent an odd breed. Just remember though, prices wil be high when you go to buy as well...unless you get a break around Feb or so. It also depends on where you are located.