Let’s Talk Weather

Photo by Greg on Pexels.com

When you did not know what topic to have a conversation with someone about, you choose to talk about the weather. Weather changes daily, is non-political, non-religious and non other things. Weather is a safe topic of conversation.

As a sheep farmer, or any person in agriculture, weather plays a major role in how our business prospers. The major expense weather affects is the cost of feed.

When Central Texas has a wet spring and summer, the hay prices are lower. I am able to graze my sheep without having to provide extra forage in the form of hay. If the summer is dry, hay prices are high. Additionally I will have to provide hay for forage.

Droughts and fires this year have caused supplement feed to rise. Corn, oats and other grains the mill uses to mix the sheep grain we feed costs more.

Currently, the spring has not been too dry and the daily temperatures have been mild, but we do need more rain. I have fellow sheep farmers in Texas who have been in a drought since last summer. One sold off all his commercial flock and kept only the registered flock, but has sold several of those as well. Several are doing sever culling to lessen the number of sheep they are feeding and improve their genetics, but will have fewer lambs to sell.

A business plan can change in the middle of the year depending on what the weather is like in the spring. If the area where I live does not get more moisture, I will maintain the numbers I have. I am mostly commercial sheep. Lamb prices are good so far this year.

Changing the business plan in May or June to not increase the flock size, will put my plans for a larger ewe flock further out to achieve.

Tomorrow, we are supposed to get thunderstorms, with severe thunderstorms in the evening and thru the night. The daily weather will determine what jobs I work on. Tomorrow is not a good day to trim sheep hooves or build/repair fence. Tomorrow for me will be a housekeeping day, laundry and such.

When the weather is beautiful, I am working outside doing what needs to be done. I do not do the housekeeping chores except on Sundays.

Weather, as safe subject for conversation is a fickle friend of the sheep farmer, rancher, farmer or anyone who makes an income from agriculture.

Photo by Jahoo Clouseau on Pexels.com


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