Just a scoop full
By Jerry Nine
(Sept. 19)--Some of our area is drilling wheat while quite a lot still needs moisture. I had dusted some wheat in and was lucky enough to get enough rain that it was coming up. Other fields we have not planted yet with the irrigation having a good stand. There are several farmers in our area who have put irrigation circles in. It is nice to have early pasture but expenses are high in everything that I have mixed emotions. However grains and cattle both seem to be strong. With heavy culling on cows all through the Midwest it looks like the cattle prices should stay good for quite a while. Every time I turn around I am paying a bill for several thousand dollars. It looks like I would learn and quit turning around.
Feeder cattle numbers are very limited and will probably get more scarce. I know several big operators that have said they only have a few feeders left or none. Calf numbers have been very limited with a few more showing up the past week or two. If we get good moisture by spring there could be a huge demand for nice quality heifers to breed.
Also, I'm sure some will breed those open younger cows if that is the case. Barring a continuation of this drought, killing prices should at some stage get very high ith them competing abinst ranchers for something to kill. But that all depends on moisture and how much.
I went into the cafe this week. A rancher who is 98 years old and his daughter came in. They had followed another rancher who is in his 60s but drives about 40 miles per hour. He may never have a stroke but almost gives me one when I am following him. This 98-year-old says to the 65-year-old that they passed him this morning coming in. The 65-year-old responded, "Yeah, but I pulled in right behind you." The 98-year-old cowboy said to the other man, "Old people like you ought to be off the highway. You're getting too old to drive." It gave everyone a chuckle.
I saw a T-shirt that reminded me of a few employees that I have had. It said, "I give 100 percent at work--Monday 13 percent, Tuesday 17 percent, Wednesday 21 percent..." Adding the whole week together makes 100 percent.
Another rancher told me about a cousin of his that was doing extremely well in football during high school several years ago. He actually was doing good enough that the Dallas Cowboys had come and talked to this kid. Not knowing for sure how big this kid would get, they also measured the parents to get a better idea of how big this kid would get. The mother had always watched her weight but said, "This is the only time in my life that I wanted to be bigger."
Editor's note: Jerry Nine, Woodward, Okla., is a lifetime cattleman who grew up on his family's ranch near Laverne, Okla.