This was first posted September 27, 2010.
The last part of the afternoon, we weighed our weaned calves. They’ve been in the corral, at least this bunch has, going through Mommy-withdrawal. That expresses itself in bawling for three or four days… and then they are over it. Before we turn this bunch out on the fields, we weigh them individually. That helps our records for when we need to choose replacements… or track their mommas and see if they are still doing a good job at raising calves. Not every ranch does this… but we do. The reflection of Johnny’s diligence in keeping good records is a nice looking bunch of cattle. That all said… it is one of the most mind numbing things we do here. Face it, an assembly line worker I’m not! Open gate, insert calf, weigh, open opposite gate (my job), exit calf. REPEAT. Today… only 100 times. I know my job. Lucas. He has a job too… and if he behaves… he gets to keep doing it. If I behave or misbehave… I have to keep doing it either way!
Lucas lies at the corner of the scale house. If he’s quiet and non-threatening, the calves will still come in… If he’s standing or moving, forget it, they aren’t coming in! That’s his first job… be still… be quiet.
If they look at him… he either turns his head or averts his eyes. Both “release” the pressure of them looking at him. “I’m OK… You’re OK”
Laying down is non threatening… but here, he’s perked up and watching the calf. We must be about done.
Once Johnny has given the OK, Vernon starts to come into the pen… and Lucas rises, bares teeth, leans forward, and if necessary, occasionally lunges through the pen’s bars! If they come off willingly, he doesn’t move… He has learned much through the years… as a youngster if they looked at him and got in his space… they were in TROUBLE. And he’d be banned from the area. He wants to be there so badly… he’s learned his job. For the most part! Cattle work continues throughout the rest of the week! Yee haw.Find me here!