The Outside Circle: Horse market, show results & rodeo seasons drawing down
Finally had our first frost. It’s been close a few times, but this was the first morning that frost needed to be scraped off a windshield. Take that, grasshoppers!
The livestock business has always been a roller coaster ride. Wild drops and climbs, devastating bottoming out, and exhilarating highs make up the rancher’s life. Right now, it must be the exhilarating high part. Last week, yearling range ewes (not registered) were bringing up to $400 per head. The sheepmen have taken a beating for so many years that it couldn’t be happening to a nicer bunch of people, so I’m thrilled for them. Darned hard to be buying replacements, but, that’s the way of the markets.
I always heard that it was about a 4:1 ratio on running sheep to cattle (cow-calf) unit. Hmm… So bred heifers will be $1,600, or is it yearling heifers ready to turn out with the bulls? It will be interesting to see.
The same vigor isn’t found in the horse market, however. I know of a six-year-old, shiny fat mare, weighing in at 1,100-plus pound that brought $125 at a recent monthly horse sale. She was headed for the plants in Canada, which is where the lunatic belonged. (Hopefully she won’t turn on some European’s digestive tract and cause a bunch of damage.) Where’s the horse market?
The $400 yearling ewe was bought to replace an old shell that couldn’t produce anymore. That old ewe went to a slaughter plant somewhere and is probably part of your dog’s “lamb” formula dog food. Same with the $1,600 bred heifer. The 14-year-old cow with no teeth that didn’t breed back or is just generally worn out has been shipped and there’s room in the cowherd for the replacement.
Guess what – there’s no place to go with the unridable, unmanageable, crippled, old, used up horses in our livestock industry. We let – yes, let – the animal “rights” nuts take that option away from us. How? By doing nothing. Did we all call, write, or e-mail anyone in Washington (where all the decisions are made that affect everyone but them) to tell them that the anti-everything people had it all wrong?
Of course, some of you did do all you could and made calls, sent e-mails and signed petitions. But not many of did. The government shut down the horse processing plants and killed an industry on the spot.
Well, we have another chance to get it back. Call, write, e-mail, send a smoke signal, but for heaven’s sake (and the sake of horses), do it. You can find the numbers in the phone book, the local paper, online, etc… so it’s not that hard. There’s yet another piece of legislation that was introduced in the House of Representatives just this week to further restrict the possibility of ever having horse slaughter again. It’s HR 2966. Use that number and tell your state’s Congressman to oppose it in any form. Tell them how important the horse industry is to you and how much processing is needed in the U.S. to be able to right the imbalance in the industry. As the Nike ad says – just do it.
At the 2011 Adequan Select World Championship Show in Amarillo, TX, on Aug. 29, the working cowhorse was won by Jerry Lee Barger, 71, of Greenwood, NE on his wife Tammy’s horse, Rattlen Pepper. The 2004 bay gelding is by Annies Little Pepper and out of Lenas Hickory Miss and was bred by Frank and Jerri Lynn Kenzy of Iona, SD. Jerry Lee Barger also was third place in the Team Sorting on Tuckers Vaquero.
In the reining, third place was won by Kelly Gully, Newell, SD, on Sailors Luv Freckles. Breakaway first place and reserve was won by Chris Jensen, Lance Creek, WY, on Master Hot Chex and Playzorro, respectively. Congrats to all of you!
Winning the Fizz Bomb Classic Futurity in Gillette, WY, was Sadiestominnieshoes, a 2006 palomino mare by Sadies Frosty Drift and out of a Dash Ta Fame mare. The good mare won $10,304 total over 130 entries. She is owned by Jeff and Kristie Thorstenson, Piedmont, SD, and ridden by Kristie.
Also, in the 5-State Breeders Futurity the week before, the 1D was won by Samantha Flannery on CM Stoney Bubbles by Chuck and Mary Crago’s late-great Nonstop Bubblin. The CM on the front of the name tells us that Chuck and Mary, Belle Fourche, SD, raised the horse.
Golliner’s Fall Series is ready to fire up on Oct. 1 at their arena south of Belle Fourche, SD. Call the Gollihers at 605-642-5363 for more info.
Troy Crowser, Whitewood, SD, is sure riding tough trying to qualify for his first WNFR. He was the PRCA Resistol Saddle Bronc Rookie of the Year in 2010 and is currently ranked in 23rd place in the standings, but there are several really good rodeos before the season ends. He rodeo Sankey’s Crow Nation to an 85-point score to place second in the first round at Pendleton, then placed fourth in the Finals round and tied for second in the average. Jesse Bail, Camp Crook, SD, had an 87-point ride on Sankey’s Domino Theory in the in the first round. That must have been some bronc riding to watch!
Also at Pendleton, Steven Dent, Mullen, NE, won the average in the barebacks; Todd Suhn, Hermosa, SD, was second in the average in steer wrestling; tie-down roping was won by Tyler Thiel, Belle Fourche, SD; and barrels by Nikki Steffes, Vale, SD. Nikki really smoked ’em at Pendleton by winning the first and Finals rounds too. She was riding Dash Ta Vanilla (Dash Ta Fame x SX Frenchmans Vanila) owned by North Dakota’s Alan Woodbury and bred by Carisa Shearer, Wall, SD.
Also at Pendleton, Korkow’s great saddle bronc, Fraid Not, took Taos Muncey to a 90-point ride! Wow, that must have been a great ride!
At the Southwestern International PRCA Rodeo, El Paso, TX, the saddle broncs had Cody Taton, Corona, NM (formerly South Dakota) tied for first, and Ardie Maier, Timber Lake, SD, second in the bulls.
The West Texas Fair and Rodeo, Abilene, TX, had Troy Crowser winning the saddle broncs. Steer wrestling had Kody Woodward, Dupree, SD third in the average and Dru Melvin, Tryon, NE, fourth.
The WPRA and PRCA seasons are about over for the year, so the race is on in several of the events for qualification. Of course, we’re all pulling for our northern plains contestants!
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