Buzzard's Beat

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Slow Down Saturday

I've been swamped like a Florida gator the past two weeks with the Kansas FFA Convention but am looking forward to an Alaskan vacation next week!

I had a chance to slow down and enjoy some friend time today when Melissa and  I ran The Color Run!

Things will be a bit slow over the next two weeks but when I come back I'll have tons of pictures of the Alaskan wilderness!

Until next time,

Labels: ,

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Sustainability: Easy to Say, Difficult to Define

Sustainability is a topic affecting all of agriculture, beef included.
Cattle grazing in large pastures that have been in the
 same family for generations - that's verysustainable, in my opinion.
Sustainability is a buzz-word and news topic that is not going away anytime soon; remember the green movement? Well, now we’ve surpassed a movement and plowed full steam ahead into a reformation of the way we think, plan, grow and progress. Restaurants, NGOs, natural resource companies – entities around the world are reevaluating their business plans and searching for tactics to become sustainable and attractive to the millennial mind.

The problem, however, with throwing the word “sustainable” around so often is that it’s extremely subjective. My definition of sustainable is polar opposite to that of McDonald’s, which varies from that of the Environmental Protection Agency, which varies from the actual definition of sustainable, “Capable of being sustained; able to last or continue for a long time.” Thanks, Merriam-Webster.
By English literature standards, there are thousands of farms and ranches that qualify as sustainable. Take my husband’s family farm for example: they have been farming and raising cattle on the same piece of land since 1847. That’s more than 165 years of food production on a farm that has weathered the Civil War, the Great Depression, the farm crisis of the 1980s and annual increases in vital inputs. If that farm isn’t the picture of sustainability, then I’ll eat an artichoke (in case you don’t know me, I’m not a big fan of green food!).
The underlying issue is that one cannot use a broom to paint a portrait – each farm and ranch varies from the next and sustainable practices that conserve natural resources are vastly different between states. What works in northwest Ohio, where the average annual precipitation is 34 inches, is probably not going to work in west Texas, where the average annual precipitation is a mere 19 inches.
Instead of trying to come up with a one-size-fits-all panacea, the beef community needs to unite and work together internally to implement already proven sustainable practices rather than waiting for a third-party regulatory body to do it for us.

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~
 Disclaimer: I wrote this for the Masters of Beef Advocacy newsletter that was distributed a few weeks ago but I had to share it here too. It's applicable to more than just MBA grads!

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Winnie Update - Our Three Remaining Backyard Chickens

As you can see, we have had two unfortunate losses at the Frobuzz Ranchero. Somehow, when I wasn't looking for a very short amount of time, we lost two Winnies due to some vermin or beast executing a sneak attack. May they RIP.
However, the remaining three are growing like weeds and gobbling up their feed!
The surviving backyard chickens
The surviving Winnies in all their glory
They have been receiving free choice (as much as they can eat) starter/grower chick ration since we brought them home and you can see how big they've gotten! The ration is 18% crude protein and supports muscle development and growth. After they finish this bag, I will move them to a layer diet.
This is what we feed the backyard chickens aka Winnies.

Raising backyard chickens
Plenty of straw and shavings for them to scratch around in.
It's been pretty cool here for the past few days so I turned the heat lamp back on and they've been rather appreciative.

Another update in few weeks! They are almost seven weeks old so in about 14 more weeks they should start laying eggs - wahoo!

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Wordless Wednesday - In Love with Baby Calves!

Who doesn't love a baby calf? Several of my friends would attest that baby calves are the cutest baby animals on Earth but I tend to think every baby animal is the cutest so I shouldn't be a judge.

Baby calves on Kansas ranches

Baby calves on Kansas ranches

Baby calves on Kansas ranches

Border collies are such cute dogs!
Oops! That's a little border collie - not a little calf. Hi Cricket!

What is your favorite baby animal?

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~

Labels: , , , , , ,