The thing that creates the main source of cash flow for D and H cattle company is not not turning feed into beef, but turning feed into athletes, just like a race horse operation. At some point the bull will end up as protein, but the longer that take the more profit potential there is, almost the opposite of the beef business.
Here’s a clip of a training session.
These bulls started out really wild and scared and I have seen them really settle while I have been here. It’s so important to keep the fire and desire in the but also get them to a thinking frame of mind rather than a reactive to keep them from injuring themselves and last a long time.
When they are going to buck or dry run bulls through the chutes it starts the day before. The feed is cut back so they are not full and heavy and could injure themselves when they buck so hard. If they are over full they don’t buck them.
The arena is watered and worked for the best consistency to keep footing and prevent injuries from the incredible athletic move some of these bulls make.
They are gathered and sorted for left and right delivery. Then they are staged in an alley with two or three in a cut. Now they are set to buck or get gentled or patterned through the chutes.
Nothing is done in a hurry at this point. The bull might be staged for quite a while before they start just to let them get comfortable and settled in the environment that creates the cash flow for the outfit.
Then you set the back pens to have a place to go with the bulls when they are done in arena. The bulls can then settle from the stress and excitement of the training.
It’s a lot of work to do it right and takes some excellent stockmanship skills.
Daughter Mesa and HD Page are a good team and have a good crew that really know how to get the most out of these bulls.
HD usually flanks all the bulls. Scott Maines from Australia was putting the dummy on, Bud Whitehead was pulling chute gate, Mesa was filming and taking bulls to back pens, and I was running out gate and loading bulls to chute.
I didn’t enjoy it too much at first as the bulls were pretty scared and wild, but after seeing the change they are making it is very rewarding and I am glad I am learning more about this stockmanship.