0603 Iowa Cattle Tour Preview
By Melissa Mussman
IRETON, Iowa — Cattle producers will pull on their plastic boots for a series of feedlot tours in four locations during June 16-19.
"We want to help the cattle farmers of northwest Iowa be the best they can be," said Beth Ellen Doran, Iowa State University Extension beef field specialist. "We want them to be profitable and successful."
One stop on the four-day tour will be Larry Schuller’s farm near Ireton.
Schuller’s family started farming in 1934, and milked cows until 1999.
"I was at a point where I needed to expand the facilities I had," said Schuller. "We ended up selling the cows and started contracting dairy heifers for the person who bought them."
The man who purchased the cattle was already contracting heifers, but his contractor was at capacity and Schuller raised the remainder of the heifers.
"The contractor they had retired and now we are raising all 500 of the heifers," Schuller said.
Schuller and his family are in the process of expanding their farm. When they are finished, they will be able to hold 600 to 700 head.
"Any other farmer that is looking to expand, I encourage them to do lots of pre-planning," said Schuller.
Schuller and his son, Eric, say that using the least amount of labor and good cattle flow makes all the difference.
"I never envisioned raising 600 to 700 head," said Schuller. "Three-hundred maybe, but not 600 to 700."
The Schullers are excited about the tour.
"Not only will we be providing other farmers information, but we will also be obtaining different ideas ourselves," said Schuller. "It is a great opportunity to obtain ideas from someone."