Hey there, have not even taken the first step to get into raising cattle, live in central Texas and want to commit to cattle. What are the first steps I need to take as well as what does my thought process need to be?
Welcome to the forum!
You've just taken the first step into the cattle business! Research is the 1st step!
Planning is so important. Especially right now. This is a tricky time to get into the cattle business. Currently the market is at record highs and climbing. Be sure you want to do this before you invest. We need more cattle ranchers out there! We've had a cattle shortage for a few years now.
Things to figure out/think about:
Land. Do you have any? Find out how many acres it takes to feed one head for a year in your area.
If you'll need to feed hay find out what feeds well in your area and who sells what.
Do you have irrigation options? That makes a difference. You'll need to learn the what, where and how of irrigation.
Heard health program. What Vaccination & Worming protocol is recommended for your area and learn how to do it right.
A good herd health program is so important. Healthy animals produce babies and pounds.
Also marketing cattle with a good solid herd health program can boost your sales income greatly.
Buyer want to know the cattle they buy will transport well, stay healthy and thrive.
What handling equipment do you want? You need a good strong set up to process your cattle and doctor sick animals. Trust me you'll change it multiple times as the years go on to better suit you and your cattle.
Breed. What breed do you want? Look into what best sells and thrives in your area on the type of feed you'll have available.
What do you want to raise? Feeders? Calves? Registered cattle? Commercial cattle? Bulls? Replacement heifers? Steers?
If you want to raise calves, there's a lot of work involved in calving. You need to be prepared for the labor. Learn what's involved with calving. How to handle a difficult birth. What equipment you'll need to start with.
There's great benefits to raising cattle. You can have great rewards. When you see those cattle you've worked so hard to raise happy, playing, growing well and all around thriving there is no better feeling. Especially new calves
It's not an easy business and you probably won't get rich BUT it's a great life. Hard work pays .
If you go into this with the intention of doing it well and are prepared your on the right track.
You'll have a learning curve. We all do. Just be strong and learn. We never know it all.
Maybe you can find a local ranch you can work at for a few months to get an understanding of what you'll be facing?
So many people get into cattle unprepared. Make costly mistakes. Loose animals out of neglect from being unprepaired.
Your already headed in the right direction. Keep taking it seriously.
Don't forget to find/design a nice brand for your livestock and pick a location. A ranches brand is not only much needed legal identification but a brand of pride in the cattle you raise. Check out your states brand registration. See what you like. Pick a location and see if its taken via the brand inspector/ag agency. YOU MUST register it before you can use it and claim it as your own!
That's all for now Time for me to check my herds .