Ohio Land and Cattle is located in East Central Ohio, near Cadiz. It consists of 4600 deeded acres and 1500 leased acres.
It is an operating ranch with some 600 breeding cows, thriving year round on the grass. Cattle are registered Black Angus, Red Angus, and commercial.
God Made a Farmer
Herd Sires are selected from the very top of large peer groups of 200-500 bulls. They are selected for a combination of calving ease, masculinity, muscling, structure, fleshing ability, hair coat,
growth, and disposition. There are currently 11 herd sires, which includes Lot 1 in the 2008 Pharo sale, Lot 1 in the 2006 fall sale, Lots 4 and 11 in the 2012 fall sale, and so on..
The largest, outside genetic influences are from Olde Cattle Company, Pharo Cattle Company, Shoshone, Wye, Octoraro and and Pinebank (New Zealand). The genetic program is very simple. We buy and develop the very best bulls, capable of reproducing cows that thrive in East Central Ohio, problem free, on ranch resources and year round grazing. Bulls are the very top, selected from large peer groups, 200-500 in a group. Cows are raised on the ranch and have a single task, wean a calf, on time, problem free. Every cow that is late, open, aggressive, or needed assistance for her or her calf, is removed from the herd. The type cow which thrives at this task, is moderate in size, 1100-1200 pounds, easy fleshing, moderate in milk, and moderate in growth.
Seventy percent of the cull pen is made up of the larger, higher milking, higher growth, portion of the herd, year after year. The cow herd is viewed as a genetic pool, which is why emphasis is placed on the very top bulls. Cow emphasis is on function, a cow with top genetics, which fails to calve on time, or has any other problem, is culled, regardless of her genetics.
Everything starts with a live calf. Bull calves average 65 to 72 pounds, heifers average 62 to 67 pounds. Less than 2 percent are born outside that range.
Roughly 1% require assistance at birth, usually heifers. Heifers are calved with the cows with no additional labor or development costs. Every dam requiring assistance is removed from the herd.
Cattle For Sale
Management Low Input
Cattle are required to thrive on the ranch resources, with no other input, other than minerals. Cattle graze some 30 pastures, year round. Cattle are bred for May calving, in a 60 day window. May calving enables calves to be born at a mild time of the year, on fresh grass. May calving matches the highest forage requirements, i.e., the third trimester and a cow with a young calf, with the highest forage availability.
Heifers are bred at 13-15 months of age, after wintering with the cow herd, on grass, with no other input, except minerals. Bulls are wintered and developed on forage, alone.
Ohio Land and Cattle is first, a business. As a business, it has resources in land, forage, cattle, fence, and equipment. Its responsibility is to produce the greatest revenue, relative to costs. This is accomplished with a profit per acre business model. This model minimizes equipment, labor, and inputs (costs), and maximizes protein production per acre (income).
Production is increased with grass management, the right cow- size and type, genetics, and management. These combined principles produce the highest possible stocking rate, and highest production per acre.
This ranch uses Management Intensive Grazing, i.e., the top half of forage is grazed, and cattle are rotated to new pasture, permitting sufficient rest for the grazed pasture. Strip grazing will play a role in the future.
Production is increased with the moderate type cow and their genetics. Each year, the following observations are confirmed: the physically smaller half of the herd, which includes heifers and second calvers, produces a calf which weans a higher percentage of the dam’s body weight, and sells at a higher price per pound. Because the cow is smaller, her forage requirements are less, which permits an increase in stocking rate. Younger cattle are smaller, with lower forage requirements, and enable higher stocking rates. A younger female, who will gain weight and produce a calf, is economically superior, to a steer who will gain only, or a cow who will calve, only. Consequently, the ranch has more, slightly, smaller calves (30 pounds less), which sell at a higher price per pound, and more total pounds are produced with the additional calves.
The genetics are moderate in growth, milk, size, low in birth weight for calving ease, and low in maintenance requirements (high $EN). These characteristics produce cattle capable of finishing/marbling on grass, every bit as well as cattle finishing on grain in the feedlot. This makes the cattle attractive in the Grass Finished market place at a premium price, and they finish in the commodity market in fewer days, with less feed.
Management increases stocking rates with strict culling; every late, open, calving problem, physical problem, harder fleshing, and disposition problem, is culled every year. Weaning earlier reduces forage requirements, and permits increased stocking. May calving, reduces forage requirements in winter, and matches the peak forage requirements with the peak forage availability.
Interestingly, the production differentiation between the physically larger group, and the physically smaller group is narrowing each year, as 70% of the cull pen is from the physically larger group. The physically larger group is the greatest source of opens and lates. The cattle are becoming more uniform, and are defining the optimal size and type for this ranch, and low input management.
The characteristics of most cattle in the culling pen are what should be avoided. The characteristics of the cattle remaining in production are reproduced thru the use of bulls consistent with the cow type remaining in production.
Ranch management is not defining the desired type and genetics, the cattle are defining the ideal type and genetics, under this management.
Revenue is increased in several other ways, selling bulls, females, grass finished beef, hunting operations, etc.
Costs are limited. With the need for hay limited to a winter storm which produces more than 2 feet of snow, there is little need for most equipment and labor. The stockpile of hay kept in inventory is purchased, it is usually 2 year old hay which reduces its cost. A benefit of buying hay, is the ranch is importing those nutrients onto the ranch.
East central Ohio has some of the best whitetail deer and turkey hunting in the country. The quality of the deer are further enhanced with careful management and rules. Ohio Land and Cattle maintains a 1000 acre sanctuary, on its 6000 (over 9 square miles) acres of managed area. No bucks are harvested which have under 130 inches of antler. There are no deer drives permitted, as drives are the largest source of wounded deer and misjudgements of antler size
Grass Finished Beef
Grass finished beef is tasty and healthy. Cattle are raised on pastures with a high percentage of legumes, they are harvested when they are well marbled. No chemicals, hormones, or antibiotics are used. Cattle are as well marbled as corn finished beef, and have much more flavor.
Beef is sold by the animal, half, or quarter.
The following link discusses the health benefits of grass fed beef, Tallgrass Beef
For articles, cookbooks and books, on Grass finished beef and farming, see Eatwild.com
Buy a meat tenderizer, we use it for every cut: Tenderizer
Power Steer: The life of a feed lot steer - Michael Pollan
Visit 5BarX.com, to discuss anything about cattle and politics.
77500 Jamison Rd,
Cadiz, Ohio 43907
Travel to Cadiz Ohio, Drive 5.1 miles southeast on St Rt. 250, Turn right on Jamison Rd, Drive 9/10ths of a mile, Turn right into the drive
View Ohio Land and Cattle in a larger map
Below are books and articles highly recommended
• Knowledge Rich Ranching / Allan Nation
• Grassfed to Finish / Allan Nation
• Quality Pasture /Allan Nation
• Land, Livestock, and Life /Allan Nation
• Get the Hay Out/Jim Gerrish
The books above can be purchased from Stockman Grass Farmer
• How Not to Go Broke Ranching / Walt Davis waltdavisranch.com
• Is the Angus Breed on the Right Track?Link to Article
• Allan Savory on the world becoming a desert, and cattle as the solution Link to video
• Johann Zietsman: Video on stocking rate as the largest factor in profitability, high density grazing, etc... Link to video
• Kit Pharo, Low input Business model/Management Link to video