When the calves are approximately three months old, we use horses and a feed truck to gather each pasture. Calves are vaccinated, dewormed, and branded with the ranch’s AW brand. We never give our calves growth hormones and antibiotics are given only if a calf is sick.
At roughly 9 months of age, calves are weaned and brought to the ranch headquarters. For the next few weeks they are fed grain pellets and hay in addition to the grass pasture, and they are watched carefully for any sickness. Eventually, the heifers are sorted off for replacement females for the ranch herd, and the remainder are sold to other ranches for replacements as well. Steers are also sorted for our retail beef program, and the remainder are sold at market or to a feedyard.