Ranch Management Practices
Our family first purchased Beefmaster bulls in 1949. In 1953, we purchased our first females and began accumulating our herd from that time forth pursuing the Lasater Philosophy as closely as possible.
We have used only home grown bulls for approximately 30 years, with the exception of purchasing Lasater bulls. All of our replacement heifers are also home grown in order to achieve the fastest genetic progress possible.
Our cattle graze for about 11 ½ months of the year on a high desert ranch, consisting of primarily Federal Land. We graze our cattle at the rate of about 1 cow per 300 acres. The other 2-3 weeks of the year are used for rounding up, branding, weaning, pregnancy testing, etc.
Supplemental feeding the main cow herd has not proved to be useful to our program. Feeding the cows causes them to congregate on the range, thus interfering with their foraging pattern.
We breed for a 60-day period. In doing so, we get about 80% of the calves delivered in the first 30 days. We breed at the rate of 1 bull to 20 cows. Yearling heifers are bred to yearling bulls at the same rate and time as the main herd. Bulls are bred on a multiple sire basis for up to four seasons and then sold, usually weighing 1800-2000 pounds.
We generally get over a 90% pregnancy rate on yearling heifers and 80-85% on mature cows. We agree with the thinking that if over 85% of our cows get pregnant, it is most likely due to one of two things, either we are feeding the cows too well or we are leaving the bulls in too long. Most of our neighbors do not agree with that line of thinking.
Our cow herd varies between 400 and 500 cows. We keep heavy productive pressure on them which creates the need for us to retain approximately 80% of our heifers annually for replacement. Many good cows are sacrificed because the fail to keep up with their peers. The main herd calves unsupervised on the range. If assistance is needed at calving on our two-year-olds, at weaning both the calf and cow are culled.
At weaning, the top 25% of the bull calves (about 50 head) are selected for gain testing. The remainder are banded at that time and sold as feeder steers. The selected bulls are then gain tested for 100 days on a mixed ration of 4 pounds corn and 16 pounds hay. After the test, usually about 5 yearling bulls are selected as replacement herd sires, 35 are offered for sale, and 10 are sent to slaughter.
Our cattle are certified and subjected to harsh conditioning. We have followed "The 6 Essentials" (Disposition, Fertility, Weight, Conformation, Hardiness, and Milk Production) for over 50 years and are living proof that if followed, "The 6 Essentials" will work. Credit for much of our success must be given to the Lasater Philosophy of Cattle Raising and to the progressive thinking and example of Lasater managers.
We consider one of Mr. Lasater's more meaningful opinions to be we must establish the criteria we want our cattle to possess and then go after it. The "looks" of the cattle are of little consequence as long as the excel in the desired areas. It is our desire to stay as close to the Lasater Philosophy as our environment will allow.
We have followed 'The 6 Essentials' (Disposition, Fertility, Weight, Conformation, Hardiness, and Milk Production) for over 50 years and are living proof that if followed, 'The 6 Essentials' will work.
At Evans Beefmasters, we feel we have been very successful getting a good grasp on the fertility and disposition of our cattle.
The greatest value of a bull is the replacement daughters he produces to spend the next five years with you on the ranch.
Evans Beefmasters is grateful to a number of repeat customers throughout the United States that have bought from us for many years. We consider it a great compliment that our buyers feel our bulls are extremely dependable genetically.
Cattle breeding is a relatively simple endeavor. The only difficult part is to keep it simple.