Ranchers begin recouping from cattle loss

first_img“What we’re seeing is some growth and some rebuilding, but it will be, I would say gradually increase over the next two to three years,” Boon explains. “The first issue for these ranchers is to pay out their debt that they’ve accumulated over this past 10 years and get that out of the way.”Boon adds, “And then they’ll start and put back in the herd, but we are seeing them retaining more females to breed.”He says province-wide mother cow inventory went from $320,000 in 2005 to less than 200,000 by 2010. General Manger Kevin Boone says it’s a really difficult number to estimate and less than 300 of his association’s 1,100 members responded to a province-wide monitor.That noted he has confirmed on average each respondent reported losing about six head of cattle to wolves and four more to other predators.“That translates to a total of between $9,000 and $9,500 per operation just on wolves alone, and about another $6,000 on other predators,” says Boone.” And of course they’re spread out – these are just averages.”- Advertisement -Those averages would indicate the losses have remained fairly stable, but because of improved markets, the dollar loss has doubled in the past two years.Meantime, Mr. Boone has also confirmed the better economic conditions are prompting ranchers to start increasing the size of their herds.He cautions however, after cutting the size of their herds by about a third in the wake of drought and mad cow disease, the increase in numbers will likely be a slow process.Advertisementlast_img