Soapweed's Ranch Ramblings
The writings of a Nebraska Sandhills cattle rancher!

Observations from a Bred Cow Sale
Dec 09, 2005

On Wednesday, there was a bred cow sale at the Sheridan Livestock Auction in Rushville, Nebraska. Enthusiasm ran high, and it was a jam-packed full house with every seat filled.

Bred heifers topped out at $1550, with more at $1500, and many bringing from $1450 to $1480. Straight black heifers weighing 1150 to 1200 pounds with a calving date of February 1st commanded the most money. Black baldy heifers and red heifers brought about $200 less. A rule of thumb seemed to be for every month later calving date, a hundred dollars would be subtracted. If a consignment of February 1st calvers brought $1480, their sisters with a May 1st calving date would bring about $1180.

One group of top-of-the-line three and four year old Angus 1400# cows came into the ring. It was announced that at least one bidder had five cows out of the group of 27 marked down as "the best" and that if he got the bid, he could pick out those cows. Those five selected cows brought $1700. Interestingly enough, when the bidding started again, the remaining 22 head brought $1750.

The gentleman sitting next to me said that when he got home that night he planned to put his cows in the kitchen of his house. He said they were too valuable to leave outside in the cold. He had brought a stock trailer with him from a hundred miles west, and had hoped to have it full of bred heifers for his return trip home. He bid up to $1350 on several bunches of heifers, but always got shot out of the saddle. He saved gas on the way home, because he just had to pull his empty trailer.

There looks to be optimism in the cattle business. It is exciting, and I hope it lasts. Japan opening its borders to American beef can only help.






Copyright © 2005 Steve Moreland
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