It’s been 3 years without much significant rainfall here in California. As a result the hills that make up Grieb Ranch are bare, some of the springs have dried up and supplementing the cattle with expensive feed is costly. The solution for Grieb Ranch was to ship (via truck with cattle trailer) a few of the remaining head of Registered Angus cattle to Oregon to Connie’s sister’s ranch last winter. Here they have feed until more rain falls back at Grieb Ranch on the Central Coast of California. This is the first time in the 136 year history of Grieb Ranch that the range cattle have had to be moved elsewhere for feed for a long period of time.
The cattle in Oregon still need to be worked, which is a bit difficult to do from California. Connie took the train up in June to work the (late) calves that were born in the snow after the Mother Cows were shipped to Oregon last winter. These calves needed to be branded, tagged and vaccinated and Connie was on hand to do just that. The train trip was fun. As she traveled, Connie was filled with hope as she passed beautiful irrigated hay fields, and some irrigated pastures that were dotted with cattle; a rare sight these days in California.
As fall approaches so does the arrival of the 2014 fall calf crop, many that are hopefuls for the 2015 Registered cattle show at the fair. The details of each new calf: its birth date, sex, and weight are recorded. An ear tag is then placed in each calf’s ear indicating the sire (bull) and dam (cow) and the birth date of the calf. At a later time the registered calves will have an ear tattoo placed for permanent identification.
At Grieb Ranch we continue to pray for rain, and look forward to the day when we can bring back our cattle to the green hills and flowing springs of Grieb Ranch.
Pictures by Wendy Gauthier – Connie’s niece in Oregon