Form to Function
WR Bar Ranch is located in Pequot Lakes, Minnesota. In the Land of 10,000 Lakes. The registered herd dates back to the 1950's when Richard along with his Father, Grandfather and Uncles bought their first registered cows and bulls.
Richard's focus has always been on the maternal and longevity traits; well muscled and moderate-framed cattle with high fertility rates that can soundly thrive on grass while only needing salt and mineral.
With these traits stacked up over the generations, uniformity in the herd and consistent production shines thru.
Turning Grass into Beef
We aren't in the business of farming or raising grain for feed. We raise cattle to thrive and do well on the pastures that we own or rent, and the native grass hay that we are able to get put up in the summer time once breeding season has started to slow down.
The cattle in our breeding program are carefully selected for their ability to turn grass in to beef. Not only for us here, but to go on and continue to do that in the herds of many farms and ranches across the United States.
Weaned calves are supplemented to grow well, but they are not pushed with high corn rations. Great forage and optimal mineral balance is the foundation. Our calves are not creep fed. The only animals on more than just forage, are the calves from weaning in late October to the 1st of May. After that time, they are strictly grass.
Sustainable Care of the Land
Every acre of the ranch is grazed during the year and a large portion is put up into hay. In the winter, we roll out bales to graze the cattle in areas that will benefit from targeted nutrient management. By doing so, it helps the soil fertility, and production.
The picture of the cows grazing in the winter shows this in action, the cows are continually on new clean ground and there is even cover of manure and leftover hay to boost organic matter in the soil.
Soil with a healthy microbiome and root system will support nutrient dense and more abundant grass for the cattle to graze.
Healthy animals come from optimal nutrition and management of resources. Ranchers are stewards of the land and their livestock.
Genetic and Functional Integrity
Carefully selecting sires to use in our program is just as important as the cows' daily care. Not all cattle are created equal and this quickly becomes apparent when outcrossing sires in a closely bred herd.
Attention to detail is crucial. We document and record everything. Dick and Juanita are meticulous about keeping records. The normal stuff, and far beyond that. It gets writting down in calving books, clipboards and entered into CattleMax for later, if needed.
Writing down those little things we notice when going thru the herd everyday or when they come thru the chute have painted some very clear pictures when going back thru the details. Over the years we have culled many bulls that we have bought when their calves on the ground just didn't match up to what we know should be "the norm" within our herd. Raising our standards and our bottom line further solidifies the genetic and functional integrity of all the cattle that leave the ranch by way of breeding animals or as beef.
Marriott of WR BAR 8055