Shannon Duxbury of Duxbury Beef understands the struggles of ranching but gives insight on how even the hard things are useful for making the good things that much more enjoyable.
Let It Rain!
Scientists will tell you that our world revolves around the sun.
Farmers and ranchers will tell you that our world revolves around the rain.
At Duxbury Beef, our cows spend their summers and part of the fall out on pasture eating grass. In the later part of fall, winter and spring, the cows are supplemented with a mixture of mostly hay, alfalfa, corn and corn stalks. The common denominators at play here are that the food they consume is entirely made up of plants and that all plants need moisture to grow.
This means that all forms of precipitation (even the 70” of snow we got this winter) are CRUCIAL to people raising livestock. The last few years, we have been starving for rain during the springs and summers.
Our cattle need rain to grow their grass in the pastures and rain to grow their feed for the next year. We are extremely lucky and grateful to raise most of the feed our cattle consume, but one of the main factors of success is how much moisture we are getting.
I was back at the ranch last weekend and told my dad that the corn looked good but very thirsty. Low and behold, over the next 48 hours, the ranch received 6.5 INCHES of rain! We complain and worry, but the rain (both literally and metaphorically) eventually comes when things are feeling their driest.
No matter the drought we are experiencing, whether it be literal or figurative, the rain will come.
The grass will grow.
The crops will flourish.
We will overcome and will celebrate like crazy when that rain gauge is full. We would never know joy if we didn’t experience hardship. We will never appreciate how incredible a lush pasture of grass is if we didn’t know how devastating a drought can be.
We say this all the time, but it always stays true. Ranching is never easy, but it’s always worth it.