Why I Made the Switch to Stockers – Profit and Flexibility

About three years ago, I decided I would try my hand at raising some purchased stocker calves. I had kept brood cows on several different farms around my part of central North Carolina for over 10 yea

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6 thoughts on “Why I Made the Switch to Stockers – Profit and Flexibility

  1. I am new to cattle. I found Dr Gordon Hazard while researching on how I wanted to start my cattle operation. I’ve consumed everything of him that I can and have modeled my operation after his or as closely as I can at this time. So great to see others found his work as valuable as I think it is. Thanks for the article and nice read. Would love to pick someone’s brain who has the same approach as myself but with a lot more experience. Maybe help me through the growing pains.

  2. Thanks for this, Blake.

    One thing I would mention to other readers is to carefully read the sections on options for profit and risk. Stocker operations require significant experience and skill. Selecting and buying calves, managing a health and nutrition program, running the grazing plan, understanding marketing… these are high-skill ventures, and not for the faint of heart. In your case, Blake, it looks as if you have perhaps ten years of experience and a ton of education.

    Keep up the good work!

  3. I think you made the right decision, but I think you could do even better by focusing on native warm-season grasses from May through early to mid-August, even the end of August. I outstanding gains (adg 2.0) during that period when steers would barely gain or lose on csg, a.k.a. tall fescue. I sell everything in September and October. I have no desire to cut ice, feed hay, or repair damaged pastures. I patch-burn graze my native grass so don’t have any interior fences or worry about rotating. The animals do that themselves. I begin in April on csg but move to a big bluestem, little bluestem, indiangrass, and eastern gamagrass mixture the first week of May. I also have bobwhite quail back. My animal performance parallels Dr. Pat Keyser’s (UT) research.

  4. Care to share some of your “average” profit per head and or expense side? Thanks GW

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