Stories of life on our farm in Northwest Georgia where every day is an adventure in this beautiful spot that God has entrusted to our stewardship.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

T-Bone, By Request

Here's a recent shot of T-Bone from the side.

He's definitely lacking in his hindquarters and the all-over beefy look Siobhan has.  Although it's not really a characteristic you look for in your beef animal, he sure does have a cute face!

We don't know exactly when T-Bone was born, but we think he's about 18 months old.  Our present plan is to send him to the butcher in November or December when he's about 2.  Depending on how hot the summer is, how our grass holds up, and how stressed he is by the time cooler temperatures roll around, we might wait a bit longer.  When it comes time to feed hay, we'll need to separate T-Bone and Siobhan (for company) from Sara, her calf, and the horses in order to get T-Bone well fed.  Since he is lowest of all on the totem pole, we need to let him spend his last weeks "beefing up" instead of scrounging for hay.


  1. He looks good, although clearly a wise decision to make him a non-breeding animal. Nice long spine for all those good cuts. It must be tough to be without horns among those large-horned cows.

    Two might be a little young for a steer but I don't know the genetics of the breed. Do they grass finish that young? A heifer could, but steers are supposed to take longer. Notice I said 'supposed to' because I'm way lacking in experience in this area.

    Still, he'll taste great.

  2. I'm glad for your input, Brent. I had retained "2 years" as the butchering age from something I heard or read, but based on your comment I started researching, and here's what I found out. Most people butcher their Dexter steers between 24-30 months of age, depending on their grass and how they're finishing them. For grass-fed, if the grass is poor, they tend to finish on good hay for 45 days. Quite a few people butcher around 27 months. That would be Feb., so he'd miss out on the spring grass.

    So what I'm thinking now is to go ahead and feed him hay this winter, as long as we can get enough. He'll be 30 months in about May, so we could get him at least 30 days and maybe 45 on good spring grass before butchering. If by any chance we get good fall rains and have grass into the winter, we could do it in Feb. The thing that makes me back away from butchering him in Nov. is that with the drought and heat we're having now, I think he'll lose some condition and will need some time to make it back up. I guess we'll just play it by ear.

    Actually, Sara's the only one with horns and she's not aggressive as long as T-Bone keeps his distance. Her acceptable distance is about what you see in the photo. :) He & Siobhan get along fine, fortunately for him.


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