Boys of Fall

Many sources, including one country song, idolize football players as “the boys of fall”. I enjoy football myself, and the weather patterns of the season certainly add to the attraction. There are few events more entertaining than a competitive football game on a crisp afternoon.
The years spent on cattle ranches throughout the West have imbedded in my mind a more significant seasonal event. Each fall as cattle are gathered to wean the calves, ranchers anticipate the measurement of success as calves are moved onto scales for weighing. These steer calves become their “boys of fall”. This practice is the culmination of multiple aspects of cattle ranching.

Weaning weights denote the weather patterns of the season past. Was the grass excellent or did drought pinch the production? Did the weather support an overload of pesky flies or did the cattle gain in peace and contentment? Since precipitation is the primary component of plentiful grass, we compare the rainfall this year to other years.
Weaning weights also evaluate our production system and herd genetics. It becomes obvious if our efforts are successful or not. Once we know how we did we can start to analyze the changes that may be needed going forward. We decide what inputs we can and should change to positively affect a complex production partnership with nature.
A good rule of thumb on cow production is that a cow should wean a calf representing 50% or more of her body weight at seven to eight months of age. If you use early weaning for drought management or other production objectives, your calves will be lighter because they are younger. In such a case the percentage of body weight will be less but there will still be a significant range in your own herd between your most and least efficient cows.

Most importantly, these calves are the financial production for the year. Their weight and quality, coupled with our marketing, determine our ability to pay our bills, service any loans and move forward for another year. This is the annual reconciliation of our spending and our income that determines our viability as an ongoing and thriving business. It is the sum total of our decisions and actions throughout the year and the ultimate measure of our performance as ranchers.
I wish you the best. May your ‘boys of fall” be a winning team.

Story written by Merin Flake, life-long cattle rancher and ranch manager. Merlin now offers ranch management consulting. Please contact me if you would like to communicate with Merlin.

The Ranch Lifestyle

Among the fantasies that keep many of us going on dreary days, owning a vast ranch out West would surely rank up there.
Ranch life taps into the American desire for space, freedom and a connection with the land. Lately, owning a ranch,…

Among the fantasies that keep many of us going on dreary days, owning a vast ranch out West would surely rank up there.

Ranch life taps into the American desire for space, freedom and a connection with the land. Lately, owning a ranch, and selling the products raised on it, has emerged as an alternative investment class for those with deep pockets and a time horizon that stretches as far as the eye can see.

Ranches have always had a spot in a wealthy investor’s portfolio. Ted Turner may be known for founding CNN, but he also began buying ranches in 1987 and is now the second-largest individual landowner in North America, with two million acres spread across seven states, trailing only John Malone of Liberty Media. He sells the bison he raises, some to Ted’s Montana Grill restaurant chain.

As a pure investment, agricultural land has long offered steady returns, particularly as food prices have risen. According to the Farmland Index produced by the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries, prices rose 8.6 percent last year and 6.19 percent in 2009.

Depending on how someone buys and sells a ranch, there are special tax treatments for what the Internal Revenue Service calls like-kind exchanges, which can defer capital gains taxes, according to Brian R. Gallagher, a tax partner at the law firm Davis & Gilbert. (The same rule, known as 1031, can apply to other real estate transactions where the properties are owned as investments.)

Travis Driscoll, Broker Associate for Galles Properties, works with buyers looking for the prefect ranch and sellers who are ready to capitalize on their investment, often times helping them move onto the ranch for the next phase of their live.

Listing & Marketing Your Ranch

Ranches, they come in all sizes and uses including hunting, hay, cattle, fishing and recreation, high fenced exotics, vineyards, and true working ranches. Travis Driscoll employs a wide range of ranch marketing services to effectively…

Ranches, they come in all sizes and uses including hunting, hay, cattle, fishing and recreation, high fenced exotics, vineyards, and true working ranches.

Travis Driscoll employs a wide range of ranch marketing services to sell your property. With the backing of Galles Properties’ knowledgeable team of brokers and integrated marketing strategy, your ranch will stand out and get noticed by qualified buyers.

As your broker, you can feel good knowing you are working with an expert in the field who is passionate about the West, assuring the highest level of service and expertise. Travis understands the special needs of selling ranchland and rural properties, with the experience to handle rural land issues such as water and mineral rights, public land leases, hunting tags, livestock and farm production, conservation easements, wildlife habitat enhancement, tax credits and so much more.

Someone once asked me “What makes for a good ranch broker?”. Without hesitation I responded with “Honesty”. I have learned that the most successful way to work with both buyers and sellers is with honesty and transparency. This approach will keep all parties from getting into any unwanted, sticky situations and will ensure a win-win for buyer, seller and broker alike.

It starts off by sitting together and discussing the unique features of your ranch or ag property. You know why your property is special, and so will I. Together, we’ll figure out the most effective way to communicate this message to the buyer. My goal is to get to know your land as well as you do, which is achieved through multiple site visits, conversations and carefully studying the documents and information associated with your property.

When you list your ranch with Travis Driscoll, Broker Associate, you will be receiving the benefit of the following marketing resources:

> Professional photography, video and brochures featuring your property

GallesProperties.com

> DriscollRanchCo.com

> Marketing Automation

> Targeted Web marketing including Pay-Per-Click (PPC) and Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

> Targeted Social Media Advertising

> Advertising in local, regional, national print media

> Direct mail marketing

> Email Marketing

> Ranch Specific Web Directories

> Mutiple Listing Services

New Mexico Hunting Season

New Mexico Hunting ranches are special places. Whether you’re hunting elusive trophy bull elk, mule deer or pronghorn, New Mexico’s hunting opportunities are as abundant and diverse as its terrain and habitat. New Mexico also offers hunting…

New Mexico Hunting ranches are special places. Whether you’re hunting elusive trophy bull elk, mule deer or pronghorn, New Mexico’s hunting opportunities are as abundant and diverse as its terrain and habitat.

New Mexico also offers hunting opportunities not found anywhere else, including hunts for exotic species including Persian ibex, oryx and Barbary sheep.

New Mexico Department of Game and Fish wildlife managers work to maintain and improve wildlife habitat and protect wildlife populations, while providing hunting opportunities on public and private lands for a variety of species throughout the state.

Hunting season is upon us and there are few places as diverse and abundant as New Mexico. If you are looking for a New Mexico Hunting ranch, we can find one for you. In addition the the New Mexico hutnig ranches we have listed, we can also help locate others not listed by us.

To learn more about hunting in New Mexico, visit the New Mexico Game and Fish web site.