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First generation

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Firstgen06

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Hi guys this is my first thread and I wanted to start by telling you a little bit about my self, Hi my name is Isaac McCaffrey I am 14 years old and I currently live in South Dakota. When I told my friends and family that I wanted to be a rancher I was laughed at and made fun of and told it wasn't possible so I am on a mission to prove them wrong so I got me a hand me down 1977 chevy Cheyenne and a atv and that brings me to were I am now I need help on how much land I need and what I need I am currently in the process of saving up for a tractor and combine.
 

Haytrucker

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I'll second Big Muddy's advice. It pays better to help with someone else's cattle year to year, and experience is worth way more than iron that needs maintained. I started working off the home operation when I was 15, 40 some years later I just about have it figured out. You might benefit more from fence pliers than a tractor and they don't use diesel. Learn the basics about livestock care and handling, and maintenance of the improvements that make it easier. Best of luck.
 

Faster horses

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I'm with Big Muddy and Haytrucker. Find a rancher that needs help, there are lots of those. Don't worry about how much you will earn, concentrate on how much you will LEARN. It will be like being an apprentice. The right rancher might let you run a cow or two to get started. It will be awhile before you need a tractor and you might have to sell the atv to buy cows. Wishing you the best. Keep us posted. We like young fellers and gals here.
 

Firstgen06

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I'm with Big Muddy and Haytrucker. Find a rancher that needs help, there are lots of those. Don't worry about how much you will earn, concentrate on how much you will LEARN. It will be like being an apprentice. The right rancher might let you run a cow or two to get started. It will be awhile before you need a tractor and you might have to sell the atv to buy cows. Wishing you the best. Keep us posted. We like young fellers and gals here.
Well around here there isn't any ranches its just farms and I figured that I could try to get a farm job but I cant with school
 

sandfarmer22

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I'll third that with big muddy and haytrucker there.

Find that rancher that needs help find out what the work is REALLY like. It might be highly different than you are thinking.
 

leanin' H

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I applaud your gumption Isaac!!!! With that attitude you'll have a much better chance at whatever you choose to do. I'd recommend taking AG classes in high school. Like others have suggested, find a ranch job and learn as you go. What's neat about this vocation is we all do the same things many different ways. Some folks use lots of machines, some folks never feed a bale of hay. So much of what we do depends on what works for each individual and each ranch. Cattle in Florida are run much differently than in western Utah where we are. Your own state presents big challenges and also many advantages. Learning them on your own could be daunting to say the least. Learning them from people who already know what works there is a better route, for you and your livestock. I wish you well as you begin your adventure. And i'm pulling for ya
 

Firstgen06

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I applaud your gumption Isaac!!!! With that attitude you'll have a much better chance at whatever you choose to do. I'd recommend taking AG classes in high school. Like others have suggested, find a ranch job and learn as you go. What's neat about this vocation is we all do the same things many different ways. Some folks use lots of machines, some folks never feed a bale of hay. So much of what we do depends on what works for each individual and each ranch. Cattle in Florida are run much differently than in western Utah where we are. Your own state presents big challenges and also many advantages. Learning them on your own could be daunting to say the least. Learning them from people who already know what works there is a better route, for you and your livestock. I wish you well as you begin your adventure. And i'm pulling for ya
Currently, I am enrolled in ag business and marketing and ag. metal and fabrication and for a ranch job since I am going to hold a normal job during the school year and during the summer going to get a ranch job for like 3 months
 

webfoot

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Where do I go to find a ranch apprenticeship?
I am a long ways from you so I don't have a real answer to that question. But at 14 years old can't imagine that it would be too far away from home. At that age there is not going to be a lot of people willing to take responsibility for you. At 16 you could certainly travel farther and at 18 the world will open up. Good luck and stay in touch here. People here will help you all they can.
 

redrobin

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Hi guys this is my first thread and I wanted to start by telling you a little bit about my self, Hi my name is Isaac McCaffrey I am 14 years old and I currently live in South Dakota. When I told my friends and family that I wanted to be a rancher I was laughed at and made fun of and told it wasn't possible so I am on a mission to prove them wrong so I got me a hand me down 1977 chevy Cheyenne and a atv and that brings me to were I am now I need help on how much land I need and what I need I am currently in the process of saving up for a tractor and combine.
I’d go buy a calf if I was you. Find someone at church Or school that’ll help you . I bought my first one at 16
 

redrobin

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What are your opinions on beefmaster cattle?
I’ve been able to see a lot of good cattle in my life and some were beef master but if you’re going to ranch for a living in east river South Dakota, I’d suggest sim-angus. Black ones with no white. I’m assuming you want to be in the cow calf business. If you’re going to run stockers, then buy the ones that make money.
 

Texan

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If you’re going to run stockers, then buy the ones that make money.
That's good advice. I'm sure redrobin would never buy any of these, but straight Herfs, pinkeyes, skunk tails, spots, and other Crayola box rejects can normally be bought at a substantial discount. And while they might not be something you'd want to run in a pasture by the road, as long as they've got muscle and shape under their hides, those clown calves can go right on the truck with the good ones and make plenty of money once you get 'em big.

Good luck. We need more young people determined to get into the cattle business and make it work, so do what you've got to do and you can make it happen.
 

Big Muddy rancher

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That's good advice. I'm sure redrobin would never buy any of these, but straight Herfs, pinkeyes, skunk tails, spots, and other Crayola box rejects can normally be bought at a substantial discount. And while they might not be something you'd want to run in a pasture by the road, as long as they've got muscle and shape under their hides, those clown calves can go right on the truck with the good ones and make plenty of money once you get 'em big.

Good luck. We need more young people determined to get into the cattle business and make it work, so do what you've got to do and you can make it happen.
They called my Dad the Smoky King long before they became fashionable and started calling them Silvers.
I bought Black hfrs before they became the cow of choice in this area.
Dad made good on a lot of Long horn cross calves before they changed the grading system.
Yes those top loads of calves are sure nice to look at but there is money to be made with the off grade cattle as long as they are healthy.
 

Texan

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I would have liked to have met your Dad and spent some time visiting with him, Big Muddy. There was a lot of wisdom in those old guys, and all of it isn't out of date like the land grant universities and slick magazines would have us believe.
 

Firstgen06

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I’ve been able to see a lot of good cattle in my life and some were beef master but if you’re going to ranch for a living in east river South Dakota, I’d suggest sim-angus. Black ones with no white. I’m assuming you want to be in the cow calf business. If you’re going to run stockers, then buy the ones that make money.
Im thinkin about a ranching west texas or new mexico
 

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