Carruthers family on site of custom AI job, preparing for estrus synchronization procedure.
From left are Bodee, Brandi, Hadley, with Maverick and Troy in rear.
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off-hand comment from one of the
Carruthers’ AI customers.
“Now that you’ve got these heifers
bred, are you gonna help me calve
‘em?” quipped the man. To that, Troy
answered, “Well, I guess we could.”
Actually, that customer had planned
to sell that particular set of females.
But when calving season neared and
he still owned them, hiring Troy and
Brandi seemed like a good idea. They
were willing, and more custom-calving
business would follow – performed
mostly for AI customers.
“It usually involved sets of fi rst-calf
heifers that the owner couldn’t or
didn’t want to calve at home. There
are some area producers that hire
someone to calve their heifers every
year,” explains Troy. “We didn’t take
in just anybody’s cattle, though. You
need to know about the genetics and
past management, so you know what
you’re getting into.”
Typically, the outside cattle were
bred to calve in February and March,
so custom-calving work was winding
down by the time AI season started,
and wrapped up well before the
Carruthers’ herd started calving in May.
Pleased with their own AI-sired
calves and those of their customers
- especially the heifers - Troy
and Brandi then decided to focus
on the making and marketing of
replacement-quality females. For the
next couple of years, they sold only
steer calves after weaning, while keeping
nearly all of their heifer calves.
They purchased additional heifers of
a similar kind to develop, breed and
market as replacements.
JUNE / JULY 2019 I WORKING RANCH I 61