Killing cows and bulls were higher the first sale we had in 2020. Even on our bred middle-aged cows there was definitely more interest and at a higher price.
Feeder cattle and fat cattle futures took a big jump on Monday from $2 to $4 per hundredweight. On Tuesday, the following day the futures lost about half of what they had gained the day before. Every year is different with this year no exception. Lots of ranchers weaned calves a little later than usual.
This also brought the old killing cows in a few weeks later than usual. I am amazed at the ranchers that do not ask whether to preg their cows cause they assume they are old and will go to slaughter. I want my customers to call and ask if they do not know.
One customer said, “Well I hauled 20 old cows to the packer cause I didn’t want to feed them until you have your next sale.” On those thin cows he probably got 35 to 42 cents a pound. And the bred cows meaning them that were 5 months and more bred brought $600 per head on the cows that weighed 950 pounds and up to $750 to $800 on the cows weighing 1,000 to 1,150 pounds.
In case your math is not very good 40 cents at 900 pounds is $360 per cow and even at $600 that cost him $240 per head. Some of those cows brought more than that. Some very tight people are so tight that they think since they saved the commission they are happy.
Our family railed fat cattle for years and it is the same way on railing cows. You get a piece of paper that says what you are getting. It doesn’t matter whether you like it or not that is all you are getting. Sometimes we get disgusted with the cattle market and our financial situation but most all of us can look around and if we and our families are healthy we don’t have much to worry about.
Old is when getting lucky means you find your car in the parking lot. Old is also when an all-nighter means not getting up to go to the bathroom.
After you turn 50 you can’t recognize letters up close but you can recognize idiots from far away.
A friend of mine told his wife that he wanted her to have a certain bracelet. He said, “It belonged to my grandmother.” His wife said, “Why does it say do not resuscitate?”
My wife sat down next to me as I was flipping channels. She asked, “What’s on TV?” I said, “Dust.” And that’s when the fight started.
Editor’s note: Jerry Nine, Woodward, Oklahoma, is a lifetime cattleman who grew up on his family’s ranch near Slapout, Oklahoma.