Teresa & Mike CHS - Our journal

Mike CHS

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When I find my HOME, I will set things up with an alley for me to walk through and not get beat up.

@farmerjan there is a reason it didn't take long to get cows out of my system. :)

That is the reason we put in so many gates. We have more than one way in and out in every one of our paddocks.

We had some high winds last night and tornadoes on both sides of us but they went by without incident. The Kentucky border area (80 miles north of us) got beat up big time.
 

Mike CHS

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It is COLD out there tonight. We both broke out the thermal pants to go down for the last bottle for the lambs just now. We are cutting back a bit on both of the ram lambs since they are getting some milk from their moms and also eating feed and hay. Babs is still getting a full ration and she is looking stout but I haven't seen her nurse on her Momma at all. In fact, if either Teresa or I are down by the sheep, Babs will leave the ewe and come to be with us. She is literally half the size of her sibling but healthy looking. We have to stop her sucking on the bottle several times during feeding since she sucks so hard. Missy is quickly growing back her hair after the surgery but it's still going to be a couple of weeks before I'll put her out in the weather. She seems to have the routine down as we go down just before sundown and she and her lambs will come running up the hill to get in the shelter. The rest of the sheep have figured out they don't get anything at that time so they stay down on the hay bale.
 

Mike CHS

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I went down to the feed store in Alabama this morning and spent some time talking to the manager there about price increases. He said he is trying to not pass on all of the price increases but obviously has no choice to increase to stay in business. We buy our sheep feed at bulk price which last year worked out to $6.70 per 50 pounds if you bought 1/2 ton at a time. This morning it worked out to $10 per 50 pound. That still works out for us as we only creep feed lambs and the ewes get enough to get them back in condition by the time the lambs are weaned but that is a hefty percentage change for those that have a slim budget to start with and that includes most of the small holders that we know.

I'm curious what the market is going to be like in another 4-6 weeks as I can see some of the producers cutting their numbers way back if not completely out of it.
 

Mini Horses

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Yep, steady increase. And like $1-2 per bag! It's killer. No feed mills anywhere near me anymore. I understand when a farmer making hay goes up but, these big companies really hit hard!! I see no end in sight. 🙁 The senior feed I use for my minis has gone up $8 a bag, this yr.
 
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Mike CHS

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Looking out the bedroom shows several of the sheep and all three of the bottle lambs catching some sun. The first one is Little Bit that wasn't given a name for a day or so since we were sure he was not going to make it.
Next is Missy who had the C-Section. Her hair is filling in fast and her lambs Babs and Toby are using her to stay warm. We still call her into the big stall at night (with heat lamps) since it has been getting cold at night.
The last picture is just because she is so cute.
 

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farmerjan

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Wow, that is quite a big change in the costs. So far, we are seeing about a 3.00 per 100 increase here.... but again, we also buy in bulk and but get it by the ton delivered, with a 2 ton minimum.... I haven't asked DS what he paid for the last load of feed... I think he got the bin filled before I had the replacements...7 weeks ago today.....but I honestly haven't talked to him about it lately. And we save by not having it bagged which adds at least $.40 a bag..... $16.00 to $20.00 a ton.
Feeder calf prices are up a little, and it looks like the spring will be even higher. Many cattlemen weaned and sold smaller calves in the more drought stricken areas, and cow numbers have been cut as they cull heavier, to try to stretch their hay supplies to last longer. With hay supplies very limited in those drought areas, and costs for trucking any hay in to their areas prohibitive, they are trimming their numbers. We have had some good late hay but still overall hay production was down 10-20% overall. Fuel prices are up, as are things like the twine that we used to tie bales....and now with fertilizer prices going through the roof for next year, yields will probably be down too. I look for many to cut their numbers even though it looks like they will be able to get more for their animals, it is going to cost more to just keep what they have and to raise young animals up. And with increased costs, no one is going to want to take a CHANCE that they will be getting more down the road....because there is no guarantee that future prices will be higher. It is going to be a bad year, as continued inflation will just cause us to actually be worse off than we were making less and paying out less. With higher wages, we ought to be better off but the costs are going up more than our wages are percentage wise....
 
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