The McMillan's cow-calf ranching operation focuses on ensuring their ranching operation is sustainable for future generations.
Zeno and Becca McMillan own and operate a cow-calf ranching operation of approximately 250-head of cows on native grassland. They're currently transitioning from Brangus and Angus cattle to a Red Angus operation while ensuring their ranching operation is sustainable for future generations.
Our cow/calf operation is not only family operated, but we also still do everything on horseback. We run about 250 head of cows on native grassland and some introduced pasture.
Our greatest challenges are tied directly to Mother Nature. We survived extreme drought in recent years, but it’s due to the way Zeno managed the land from a conservative grazing perspective. We also received drought payments to add livestock water to pastures that didn’t have any water.
I always look forward to seeing the baby calves being born. I also enjoy our home-raised beef and knowing the hard work that went into making a tasty and nutritious meal.
We check everything, from animals to feed and water, daily and sometimes more so when weather conditions are extreme. Stocking conservatively, managing for adequate to surplus forage residuals, providing sources of fresh water, and managing herd health are just a few examples of what we do on the ranch.
I believe sustainability is more of an action than a word. It is the actions that we take every day to ensure we will leave the land better than how we found it. It is a daily process of bettering our operation and animals so that hopefully the generation after will be able to enjoy the land and livelihood that we did and do the same for the next generation to come after them.
Agriculture plays such a critical role in our economy. Our cow/calf operation represents just a tiny component of a much bigger system that supplies our world with food, clothing, jobs and international trade. When you actually take a step back and really analyze your day, from tools that you use to the clothing on your back, most of it can be traced back to an agricultural product and a person that helped to get that product to you.
My favorite cut is a T-Bone. I enjoy it medium rare with a dash of Tony Chachere's. – Becca