#718 spent the remainder of the fall, and until the end of January in a large pen with his herdmates near the AL Ranch headquarters. The end of January, #718 and his herdmates were trailed from their “backgrounding pen” to the main corrals in order to load on a semi-truck, and be shipped to my feed yard. #718 weighed 925# at shipment time (he’s come a long way since weighing 86#’s at birth!). It takes about two hours for the cattle to make the trip from AL Ranch to the feed yard.
Upon arrival at the feed yard, #718 was unloaded and moved to the home pen with his herd mates after a short acclimating session.
“Acclimation” is a very important process that we follow at the feed yard when we receive new animals. It occurs over a 5-7 day period as we transition or acclimate the cattle to their new home. We implemented acclimation protocols at the feed yard about five years ago, and it has made a tremendous difference in lowering the stress level of the calves as they transition into the feed yard.
Watch these next series of (obviously amateur and unedited) videos as I take a group of cattle through an acclimation session…The video clips show 1. emptying the home pen, 2. trailing down the alley way to the corral, 3. cattle handling in the corral, 4. returning to the home pen, and 5. back in the home pen at the end of the session. I shot this footage last Sunday morning as I exercised cattle at the feed yard, and I hope that it will give you a deeper understanding of what “acclimation” means, and how important I believe that holistic care is for my animals.