The higher temperatures and longer hours of sunshine can have an effect on cattle and their daily needs. As a result, summer can be a difficult time of year for many ranchers. The heat, the summer sicknesses, the cost of labor, etc.
It is wonderful that the cattle get to spend more time outside, but that means more maintenance. Ranchers must ensure that cattle do not get overheated by installing air circulation systems in barns and providing fresh, cool drinking water. Having a misting system, water pool or pond will also help keep livestock cool!
It is also very important for ranchers to provide shade for their cattle. This might seem obvious, but think how many pastures are just fields of grass with not a single tree in sight. Run-in sheds, lean-tos, and shade trees offer quite a bit of relief from the summer glare for grazing animals.
Vet bills can be very straining on ranchers. Summer pneumonia, pink eye and foot rot can all be significantly reduced with a sound vitamin/mineral program. Further, a healthy calf is a calf that is gaining better, thus impacting weaning weights.
Controlling insects as much as possible during the summer will be a major help to your cattle. Insect strike causes stress, aggravation, stomping and excessive movement, which, in extreme heat, can be detrimental to an animal’s health and well-being. Bug spray, fans, proper manure management and reduction or outright elimination of standing water all go a long way.
It is important for ranchers themselves to stay protected from the sun. Many ranchers are known for their infamous farmers tan, but remember to wear sunscreen and drink plenty of water. Implementing proper safety measure when doing chores or working with equipment is also very important to stay safe on the farm.
If you have any questions or queries about ranch real estate in Northern California or any of our ranch property listings, do not hesitate to contact us here.