The Outside Circle: Springtime signs, smart girl, good ones gone, RodeoHouston and rabies study |

The Outside Circle: Springtime signs, smart girl, good ones gone, RodeoHouston and rabies study

I just took a little trip back to the eastern side of South Dakota. I had never been there when the ducks and geese were migrating so it was quite an experience. What appeared to be smoke in the sky were actually geese, for miles, in a steady stream heading north. There were ducks mixed in, but it was mostly geese, predominately Canada and Snow. We are on the edge of the flyways out in my country, so we sure enough see lots of geese and cranes, but nothing like that. Hundreds of acres of fields would be just covered with the geese as they were feeding. The winter wheat was quite a favorite, as well as stubble from milo and millet. The din of their honking and “talking” could be heard day and night, and was quite a sound to go to sleep to.

Closer to home, I saw a killdeer this morning, plus some meadowlarks and redwings. It must be spring. I never believe the calendar, but I believe the birds. It even smells like spring. The first meadowlark’s song always stops me in my tracks. I think it’s one of my favorite sounds in the world.

I want to wish a very happy birthday to my friend Clarence Krogman from White River, SD. Horseman, cattleman, rancher and fine person, Clarence will be 101 years young on March 31!

Congratulations to Ryder Heitz, Newell, SD, for winning the state spelling bee! She will go on to compete at nationals in June. Ryder, 12, is also a barrel racer and Queen contestant, so I thought I would mention her here and give her a big thumbs up.

I read that Zenyatta, the great Thoroughbred race mare, is confirmed in foal to Bernardini. I’m sure this pending foal will experience a great deal of scrutiny in the years to come. Bernardini is a gorgeous, big horse, perfectly balanced, collected in his movement and moves like a cat. That coupled with Zenyatta’s similar characteristics should produce a foal of like quality and style. One never knows, though. Time will tell.

At Arcadia, FL’s All-FLA Championship Rodeo held March 11-13, the barebacks were won by Joe Gunderson, Agar, SD with an impressive 87 points on Frontier Rodeo’s Dry Crop. Saddle broncs had a tie for first with Jesse Bail, Camp Crook, SD, riding Frontier’s Doc Holliday to an 88-point ride (tied with Taos Muncy and Bradley Hunter). Kanin Asay, Powell, WY, placed third in the bulls. I’m sure the windchill was not a big concern for the northern boys at this rodeo. Hope they didn’t sunburn.

My sympathy goes to Chuck, Mary and Jade Crago in the loss of their great mare, “Prissy.” Kings Lady Playboy was a home-raised daughter of PC Bronsin, and a much loved part of their family. She was Jade’s rodeo rope horse, plus she was a great ranch horse and broodmare. A beautiful palomino, she was always a queen of a mare and will be long remembered.

Another family lost a good one when Dashin Elvis, owned by Webb Ranches, Volin, SD, was found dead in his stall on March 12. The 1991 stallion was one of the last sons of Dash For Cash and out of Erie Legend (TB) by Lake Erie (TB). He was not only a successful sire of barrel horses, he was a great performance horse himself. He was a winning barrel horse, plus was used in tie-down roping, heading, heeling, goat tying and pole bending. Some of his more notable barrel wins include the Sunrise Open and Breeders Derby/Maturity in ’04-’05, and the Bold Heart Derby/Maturity in ’06. This beautiful stallion epitomized the versatility of the Quarter Horse. My heart goes out to the Webbs.

The SDHSRA Regional Rodeo entry forms are due April 15. That means, in the hands of the state secretary, not sitting on the counter under last week’s mail. I know that parents just love the panic stricken moments involving notaries, principal’s signatures, remembering to get the signatures of both parents, plus entry fees and suchlike. I really, really miss high school rodeo, but I don’t miss those moments!

Levi Grimes, Kadoka, SD trainer received a certificate for third in the nation in 2010 AQHA Limited Open Points earned. To be eligible for this, the rider cannot have accumulated over 25 AQHA points in previous years of showing. Levi trains and shows predominately in the cowhorse events and does a super job. It’s always nice to see one of the nice guys in the business get recognition for doing well. I think we’ll be seeing a lot more of Levi on the national scene in the near future.

RodeoHouston is finally over and some of that Texas money came back north! Cort Scheer, Elsmere, NE, won $60,350 in the saddle broncs while Bobby Harris, Gillette, WY, won the bulls for a $61,350 check. Lisa Lockhart, Oelrichs, SD, held up the ladies end of things by winning second in the Finals Shootout and 6th in the Super Shootout. Her total earnings from the Super Series was a tidy $21,400.

A big win at Houston assures a trip to the WNFR, so these winnings mean a lot to these folks. Besides that assurance, it will sure put a lot of fuel in their outfits so they can get down the road.

Lisa is currently standing fourth in the barrels, while Jill Moody, Letcher, SD, is 5th and Britany Fleck, Mandan, ND is 8th.

Spring vaccination time for our horses is upon us. The horses that are out in the crowds at rodeos and shows are particularly in need of a good vaccination program. One that many don’t use is the rabies vaccine in horses, yet horses are often bitten by rabid animals due to their curious, stick-their-nose-right-in-there nature (same reason they get snake bit on the nose).

A 10-year Texas study has found some evidence that post-exposure vaccination has some effect in the prevention of rabies. For example, if you saw your animal bitten by an animal that tested positive for rabies, an immediate vaccination against rabies, with followup vaccinations at three and eight weeks, apparently prevents the disease. In tests, the animals exposed were kept in isolation for 90 days, as is the protocol for an animal that is bitten and not immediately euthanized.

Further testing is in order, but it at least gives some hope for those whose animals get bit. The best bet, by far though, is still the good old vaccination program before anything happens. It’s quite inexpensive and could sure save some heartache. Watching something develop rabies is a scary and heart wrenching experience, as is putting the animal down. As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Well, I think we’ve ridden out all the draws and corners for this week. Send me your items of interest and I’ll sure share them here. Happy spring!

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