The Safe Bull

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Wyatt

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Bulls/cattle can smell/sense if you are scared. If they do, they will behave worse.

The best frame of mind to be in when you handle cattle is the right blend of calm and assertive.

If you do have to back down in a confrontation with a bull/cow, then it is time to get rid of that animal. If it has dominated you once, it will remember and be likely to want to do that all the time. If your other stock see that happen, they may be more likely to try that on too.

Breeding with temperament as the top priority is the best way to get safe cattle. My current bull is essentially a 2000 pound puppy. He likes me to hand feed him and when we yard with him in the herd, he is no more trouble than any of the cows. In a paddock he regularly lets me get close enough to touch his head.

Back twenty years ago we had a psycho bull that tried to kill me in the yard. A cow stepped in between me and the bull and stopped the encounter. To this day, I interpret that she didn't want anyone to "hurt the boss". We selectively kept her calves and their descendants - they are now about 25% of the herd.

I never forget that cattle are first and foremost food for us humans - but they still can be interesting animals.

No offense, however, if a man doesn't have a healthy fear/regard for an animal that outweighs him 6-10 times over he's got a screw loose.

Cattle, like horses are naturally spooky prey animals, so, I'm not so much a believer that cattle can 'smell' fear, however, they react to fear because a human that is afraid shouts and generally acts out in such a way that it permeates the contact situation.

In my experience, cows rarely charge unless in defense of their calf, bulls on the other hand should never be trusted to not charge.

I recommend carrying a fiberglass sorting stick when working cattle to coax out the desired animal from the pack. A stout hickory cane while in the pasture can often dissuade a rank critter with a smack across the bridge of the nose. At the very least, it might give you time to get back in the truck if the situation is going south.

I'd be a tad hesitant to cull based upon confrontation alone. Beef cattle are bred for loin eye and musculature, dairy cattle for pounds of milk production with type and dairyness considered as well. I don't believe that temperament is a trait in the bull books, however, draft horses are often some of the most dog gentle animals one could meet, so temperament must have been a consideration in the establishment of the various breeds thereof.

I would agree that culling based upon rankness would be a consideration if the condition was acute and the animal couldn't be worked with or around, and breeding with temperament in mind is a good idea if one were able to find a bull stud where that trait was documented as repeatable.

FYI, a 2000-pound bull is no puppy. With one casual flick of the head, they can break bones. I learned about getting too friendly with cattle. There was a Holstein cow at a dairy where I worked that liked to have her jaw scratched. I think her tag was 670. I thought it was cute that she would stand there for it when most of the other cows would shy away if you came near them. One day I was driving a string into the parlor from the holding pen and suddenly I was shoved rather brusquely from behind. I spun around and it was 670. I realized then it was not very wise to attempt to make a pet out of something that could bust you up looking to be scratched.

I got off easy.
 
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Wyatt

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I done deer,hogs,chickens,rabbits.
After I did my first deer without any help, think I could do a cow to halfs.
I have a brother that was a meat cutter for 10 years, so I would have help with the steaks & roast, everything else would be ground meat.
The frontloader would work to hang the cow.

A half ton chain hoist would work too, if a loader wasn't available.

You would need to drop the beef inside a barn, (or under a very stout tree limb) where there was enough height to hoist it and get it completely off the ground.

Once you shoot it you will ideally need to hoist it to bleed it out, however, if you don't think you can hoist it pretty quick bleeding it out on the ground will do. You could shoot and bleed outside and drag it into the barn if you have a tractor. Less mess that way.

When you skin, roll the animal on it's back. Skin down the legs and belly and then hoist it up to remove the hide from the back. that way you avoid getting dirt on the meat. Don't forget, before you hoist it up to cut around the bung, pull it out enough to tie it off, so that when you gut the beast you don't get manure in the body cavity.

Be sure that whatever rafters, (tree limb) you tie your hoist to can carry the weight as you don't want the barn, (branch) and the steer in your lap.

There are plenty of YouTubes out there on carcass breakdown as well.

I like these guys.



P.S. You don't need an electric bandsaw.

1659359647874.png
 
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Magus

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Just out of curiosity, anybody seen any neck roasts lately? you can get the head here, but not the full neck. that's some good meat right there!
 

Wyatt

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Just out of curiosity, anybody seen any neck roasts lately? you can get the head here, but not the full neck. that's some good meat right there!

I would venture that they would not be available in a local meat market as nearly all beef comes in from the packer in a box of what are called primal cuts. Neck is not a primal cut.

1659375817764.png


About the only way you are going to get neck is to find a custom kill shop out in the country that sells meat.

You will probably need to reserve it as it is probably ground up in most cases.

I would highly recommend the chuck eye roll, (far left of the diagram, third up from the bottom #2275)

It is the same muscle mass as the ribeye, so it has excellent flavor, it is around 80% lean with no huge clods of fat, and after cooking you can eat 100% of it with no waste other than cooking shrink.

I have smoked it and sliced it end to end, it is moister, better flavored and way less fat trim than a brisket.

Chuck eye will probably cost about the same as brisket, however, with brisket you will have around 50% fat trim loss after smoking.


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joel

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Just out of curiosity, anybody seen any neck roasts lately? you can get the head here, but not the full neck. that's some good meat right there!
I got a very large deer with a good neck roast (big for whitetail in S.C.), but have not had a whole cow since I left home.
 

Spikedriver

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We had an old Angus cow that was nuts when I was a kid. She passed that temperament on to her calves. She knocked a gate panel down on top of my dad once. Another time we had her in the headgate for the vet to preg check her. The vet was elbow deep in her back end when she blew up, tore the headgate apart and went out through the side of the barn. She just made a new door and left. The vet picked himself up off the dirt and said to get rid of her. She later had twins and they were both psycho as well. Our feed bunks had steel cables on the back for fence. I watched them go through those cables one day. Both of them, just for fun, stretched the cables and left them hanging limp.

All three of them went on the truck together. Can't say I was sad to see them go...
 

Dani

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My sweet Hunny got hurt yesterday at work which means I will need to do all the feeding around here. Which I do pretty much on a normal basis anyway when he works late hours. We have raised ALL 4 of our bulls since they were calves, one being just born about a week ago. I will never completely trust any of them, just like I will never fully trust one of our cows. I have a Jersey that I have raised since she was 6 weeks old. Fully trained with a halter and lead. Loads up when need be without issue. Doesn't mean you do not have to watch out for your own feet. . Just saying. Our oldest bull Charlie is a BIG dope. He likes to "encourage" you to walk faster according to Hunny. Charlie doesn't try to encourage me. I slapped him on his nose and hadn't tried since. But after I pour his feed I do have to watch out with his head swishing back and forth to clear everyone else away so need to step away quickly. Although my milk cow gets jealous if I give love to another. . . I only thought my Hunny came to nudge me on the backside while I was loving on a young bull Jake. Nope, it was my milk cow Claire. You really always have to be aware when working with cattle. Even if they do not intentionally want to hurt, because of their size alone, it is very possible. My "little" 700 lb girl has been know to step on my foot a time or two.
 

Magus

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I would venture that they would not be available in a local meat market as nearly all beef comes in from the packer in a box of what are called primal cuts. Neck is not a primal cut.

View attachment 91933

About the only way you are going to get neck is to find a custom kill shop out in the country that sells meat.

You will probably need to reserve it as it is probably ground up in most cases.

I would highly recommend the chuck eye roll, (far left of the diagram, third up from the bottom #2275)

It is the same muscle mass as the ribeye, so it has excellent flavor, it is around 80% lean with no huge clods of fat, and after cooking you can eat 100% of it with no waste other than cooking shrink.

I have smoked it and sliced it end to end, it is moister, better flavored and way less fat trim than a brisket.

Chuck eye will probably cost about the same as brisket, however, with brisket you will have around 50% fat trim loss after smoking.


.
Probably a local thing then.the Mexicans here like to BBQ the head and neck for special holidays and weddings.
 

Peanut

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Temperament is important for small operations. We had big Charolais, last bull was a polled Hereford. All gentle but the one that lost his mind. And they produce gentle offspring. Unless, a cow is rank. We had one rank cow, she was a little dangerous, but she had fantastic calves! We put up with her but I never turned my back on her either. She was mostly charolais with a little Brahma mixed in. Had those black lifeless eyes.

Small farms with just a few cows have/need gentle critters. Most don't have the facilities to handle rank cattle. My cousin runs several hundred beef cattle. His barns, corrals, holding pens are built for the odd rank cow or bull. He doesn't care that much about temperament. He won't put up with crazy though.
 
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