Third generation ranchers, Cassidy, Blaine and Kacey Huffman enjoy springtime on the family’s 153 Mile Ranch where their mom and dad, Jenny and Cuyler Huffman, can see 20 calves a day born during the height of calving season.

Calving season brings hope for Cariboo ranchers

Still a lot of work ahead to recover from the wildfires

Calving season is just getting going at Jenny and Cuyler Huffman’s 153 Mile Ranch Ltd just south of Williams Lake, bringing some normalcy to what has been an undoubtedly challenging year for most Cariboo Chilcotin ranchers.

“It can be frustrating and stressful, but it is a good time of year as long as the weather cooperates,” Cuyler said of the calving season, this year challenged by deep snow.

“We’ve had to move a lot more snow than normal. We rented a Cat for five days, and my dad pushed snow for five days.”

Overall Cuyler said the calves are faring well, with the couple checking on their expectant mothers around the clock every three hours in a season that lasts for six to eight weeks.

“We really are just getting going. But we can have 20 [calves] in a day, easy,” Cuyler said.

“It would be nice to have 20 in a day,” added Jenny, noting all their children help out in the calving season.

153 Mile Ranch Ltd will be calving in total just over 400 head of cows and heifers this spring.

The historical ranch, which the couple purchased in early 2017, was heavily impacted by the 2017 wildfires.

Located within the Spokin Lake and Wildwood fires, much of the ranch’s private and Crown grazing fencing was destroyed in the wildfires, and the couple are having to manage the ranch around those challenges heading into spring.

“We have no containment. There are no fences left. They’re all burnt,” said Cuyler, adding that it was very frustrating that two and a half kilometres of brand new fencing from White road near Williams Lake to the main ranch was destroyed in the fire just three weeks after it was built.

This week the Huffman’s secured alternative grass for their cattle for the spring and summer months.

“We have private pasture that we’ve rented for the summer for our cows, so they have somewhere to go.”

He said there is still a lot of work to be done to recover from the wildfires.

“That’s what this next summer will be, is the ministry trying to get some fences up plus ourselves.”

Cuyler said the wildfires have certainly made their first year at the ranch a difficult one, but they are looking forward into the future with optimism, something made easier with the coming of springtime and new calves on the land.

“It makes it all worthwhile when you see those babies like that, all spry and jumping around,” said Jenny, pointing to a new calf. ” It’s perfect.”

 

Deep snow has given ranchers in the Cariboo Chilcotin more of a challenge, particularly as calving season begins. The Huffmans and many other ranchers have cleared areas of snow using heavy equipment to give calves somewhere to be out of the snow. Angie Mindus photos

Jenny and Cuyler Huffman are busy in the midst of calving season on the 153 Mile Ranch Ltd. While the deep snow is causing some issues, the calves themselves bring optimism after a difficult year.

The Huffmans calve out more than 400 calves - as many as 20 a day - during the season which lasts six to eight weeks.

Just Posted

Counterfeit bills still being passed in Kimberley Cranbrook area

The $100 counterfeit bills identified in Kimberley earlier this month have been… Continue reading

NDP MPs hold town hall on proposed Green New Deal

Two NDP MPs held a town hall in Cranbrook to present a… Continue reading

Celebrating providers at Community Connections Support Services

Community Connections Support Services had a ‘thank you’ barbeque for local providers in the community

Rocky Mountain Rogues get ready for Saratoga Cup

The Rogues will be looking to defend their championship title from Sept. 7-8 at the Saratoga Cup

Elk River reclaims property as its own

Laws make it harder to protect private land than ever before says farmer, local government

B.C. sockeye returns drop as official calls 2019 ‘extremely challenging’

Federal government says officials are seeing the same thing off Alaska and Washington state

Expanded support to help B.C. youth from care attend university still falling short

Inadequate support, limited awareness and eligibility restrictions some of the existing challenges

Ethnic media aim to help maintain boost in voting by new Canadians

Statistics Canada says new Canadians made up about one-fifth of the voting population in 2016

Cross-examination begins for B.C. dad accused of killing young daughters

Andrew Berry is charged in the deaths of six-year-old Chloe and four-year-old Aubrey in 2017

Dog attacked by river otters, Penticton owner says

Marie Fletcher says her dog was pulled underwater by four river otters in the Penticton Channel

BC SPCA overwhelmed with cats, kittens needing homes

Large number of cruelty investigations, plus normal ‘kitten season’ to blame

B.C. Hydro applies for rare cut in electricity rates next year

Province wrote off $1.1 billion debt to help reverse rate increase

Speculation tax forces sale of Greater Victoria’s iconic ‘Tulip House’

Bob and Jan Fleming selling their retirement home famous for its thousands of tulips

Most Read