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cowfarmer
Senior Contributor

Sandhills and southern cows

 I send some cow/calf pairs out to the sandhills. I've been doing this for years and my relative out there says that the area is getting bombarded with guys from Texas and Oklahoma looking for grass. Is this the case for most of you guys out there. Too bad for those guys down there, a real shame.

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18 Replies
GoredHusker
Senior Contributor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows

I would guess so.  When we went through our horrendous drought five to ten years ago, a lot of guys from around here sent cows up into the sandhills.  This past summer and fall, there have been a lot of local guys buying cows from down south for pennies on the dollar.  They've been feeding them up, calving them out, then selling them as killer cows.  It sounds fairly lucrative buying a cow for 700 bucks, getting a 600 buck calf out of her, then pounding her out for another 700-800 bucks.  However, the death loss I'm told has been somewhat high. 

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cowfarmer
Senior Contributor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows

Ive heard a lot of those southern cows died due too so much dust in the lungs.

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jrsiajdranch
Veteran Advisor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows

Had a neighbor buy 34. 14 died. I do not think he is gonna make the killin he hoped!

 

BTW has this increased the rent on those sandhill parcels?

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k-289
Senior Advisor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows

Take the total price of a 500# calf  X  30% and that gives you a figure guide for  the pasture bill---the little fela will spend @ 40 % of his first year in the pasture with moma ---happy grazingSmiley Happy

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Nebrfarmr
Veteran Advisor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows

Rent has gone up drastically the last couple years.  Over here, it is more the yearling guys dong the running up, than anyone.  They are buying the calves off those old cows (don't seem to be near the problems with them dying off, as the older cows have) and running them on grass over the summer.  They have run quite a few cow/calf guys off the land here, as they are paying rents that the cow/calf guy just can't pay.  The joke will be on the ones who signed high dollar 5 year leases, when they realize that the reasons they have been able to buy calves cheap, is partly because of the influx of Southern cattle (which should start to go back South, once the rains start) and the fact that as they run cow/calf guys off the land, more calves come up for sale because they aren't keeping as many heifers back.  The tide is just starting to swing over here, locally, where the better heifer calves are bringing as much or sometimes more than their brothers from the same herd.

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cowfarmer
Senior Contributor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows

I've heard the same from my relatives out there. The yearling thing is swallowing pasture like crazy. My cousin lost a pasture that his in laws had rented for 39 years to a Texas outfit just to run yearlings, interesting times.

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bikinkawboy
Veteran Contributor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows

Concerning the Texas cattle dying, a few months ago a guy in this area bought 60+ thin momma cows from Texas, got them home, they ate hay and drank water like they were starving and the next morning 20 were dead.  The vet posted them and found their stomachs full of mud.  Apparently there was so little to eat in Texas that they were eating roots, dirt and all.  

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Nebrfarmr
Veteran Advisor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows

Talked to a guy at the local sale barn about consigning our calves.  Normally, at this time of year, through March or so, they have 3 calf sales, and one 'cow' sale every 4 weeks, or about one cow sale a month.  We are having trouble picking when we can take our calves, because with all the influx of cows, they are having a cow sale every other week, which is making the calf sales really big, as well.  He said part of it is the cows from down South, which were brought here temporarily, with the idea they would go back (lots of cows here graze winter cornstalks) and the owners say they don't have near enough grass or feed for the whole bunch.  So, as the cows come off the rented stalks, some go home, some sell.  Another reason there are a lot of cows selling, is because local cow/calf guys are losing pasture ground to guys over East, who have torn up grass to seed row crops, and are trucking them over here, half a state away.  With landowners not living here anymore, they really don't care WHO has cows on their ground, they just chase the highest dollar rent.  Since these guys have lots and lots of winter stalks to graze, they can pay more for pasture rent.  However, from personal experience, having neighbors that only come out every other Sunday, to see if their cows are in the fences, does not necessarily make for the best neighbors.  Yearling guys are becoming more aggressive, about upping rent above what a cow/calf guy can pay, and taking over acres, as well.  Between these three factors, I think, at least locally, we should be in for good calf prices, for some time to come.

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cowfarmer
Senior Contributor

Re: Sandhills and southern cows Nebrfarmer

I guess I'm one of those guys, I send some out every year. And the ones I send out there do better than the ones I keep at home. I have some family out there that watches them, he has started babysitting more cows, because his herd got older and he didn't want to buy 2100 dollar heifers.

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