I don’t think in the 15 years we have been on this ranch, have we ever bought cow hay. Alfalfa from Arizona and New Mexico for the horses and exotics but never bermuda round bales.
We have two big coastal bermuda fields that we can usually get at least two cuttings from and have always had extra hay to help our neighbors if they are in need. This year? We had to go searching.
One idea was to get an oilfield pipe truck, that was coming home empty, to haul some hay down from North Dakota. That fell through. We put out our feelers and cast about. Hay, oh haaayeee, where are you? Then, my husband got wind of this hay in Louisiana. Thank you, Cajuns!
Seems like everyone is getting rain but Texas!
It arrived at the crack of dawn this morning and the rhythm of the ranch just shot up a couple of notches. We were out the door, lickety split to greet the driver, show him where we will unload and then crawled into the big tractor.
I got a call the other day from a woman who said, oops, sorry. I rang the wrong number. But since I have you on the line anyway…do you know where I can get some hay?
It has really gotten pretty desperate out there and the man who runs the sale barn where we sell our replacement heifers, said that all of the cattle he has been selling lately, were shipped OUT of Texas. I know many who have sold over half, if not their entire herd.
When it does rain, and it will…the price of a cow will probably go way up because there will not be any in Texas for awhile. Texas ranchers will have to go out of state to put a herd back together. The people who eat hamburgers and steaks in the city don’t know about this kind of thing. Why should they? I saw on TV the other night that many kids in school don’t even know that meat comes from cows. They just eat it not knowing it’s an animal.
God has made us stewards. Stewards of the animals, the land…It’s an important responsibility and ranchers take it seriously.
I love living my life with such a closeness to our animals. I love to listen to the livestock eat. It is a comforting sound, the crunching and muffled contented sounds of horses gathering that last piece of hay or the cows scooting feed along the surface of the metal feeders, sniffing and licking every last little bit.
I am so grateful that we are still able to provide for them. Still keeping our fingers crossed, hoping for rain. Saw an armadillo licking a dripping sprinkler in the yard last night. When you see that, you know it must be dry.