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No finer calf than Best Choice Chaff

No finer calf than Best Choice Chaff

Holy Batman it is hot out. This last week has just been miserable. When it’s 91 alone in the shop office, it’s tough to stay motivated about getting much done as one seems to sweat through just everything whether it’s inside or outside.

For the first time in a while, we actually had to move cows to a different pasture. The couple windmills in one of the pastures the cows were in were not keeping up, and these were windmills without solar or submersibles.

The temps look even warmer this week, most days are supposed to be hitting around the 100-degree mark. Seems like a good week to be doing cattle work (insert hand to forehead emoji here). On the agenda this week is ultra-sounding both spring recips and then also a contract group of cattle. Going to be a lot of setting up and tearing down portable corrals, as the locations are spread out, but I’m sure it will all come together just fine.

Also on the agenda — sorting heavies. Hard to believe that it is calving season already, I swear that I just finished up. Considering the last contract cow calved on Aug. 1, I guess I kind of did. I remember going to Denver Stock Show one year and there was a prominent Angus breeder that had entries on the Hill born in every month of the year except one — please God, do not let me get to that point!

The recips are supposed to start around Sept. 10. There’s a handful not at the North Place that have my own embryos in that I’ve already been watching closely, as one is carrying a purebred longhorn bull calf. For those of you who may remember, our trophy steer passed away last year at the age of 17. It seemed like a good idea to get another one, but after looking around, I decided it may just be a lot wiser (and cheaper) to purchase an embryo or two. The calf will hopefully be red speckled and is out of a sire called Top Caliber, and a dam called Haystack.

I will be looking for name ideas with that mating, so if you have one please let me know. For some reason, “No Net Wrap Deluxe” or “Top Roll in the Hay” do not seem like they are going to make the cut.

It must be the week for names. Had a dilemma this week, and in typical Jaclyn fashion, I analyzed it to death. I found me a new four-legged family member. I had been looking for a new pony for a while (yes, I know it’s a horse not a pony, just like I know it’s an ATV, not a bike). Fortunately, I have neighbors who raise good working ranch horse ponies along with ranch work ponies. After test-riding one a couple of times, I finally made the decision, and BOXO Heavens Playboy is now home on the Wilson Ranch.

Playboy is a five-year-old bay gelding that I will not only do ranch work on, but may get the inclination to show. For some unknown reason, it looks like the previous owners may have already talked me into my first show towards the end of September. I’ve been told too many times to mention this year that I need to focus on my personal life more, so I guess here’s me trying to get a hobby.

I could not be more excited about Playboy — well, minus just one fact. I already told the niece and nephew that they can ride him next time they come out to visit. I just am not that sure how much I want them heading back to Elkhorn and telling their friends that they went and looked at Playboy. I’ve been thinking about this long and hard for the last week as I was waiting on insurance to get finalized, since one of the things that I have learned over the years is that a horse will always find its way to do something stupid, especially a good one.

I wasn’t coming up with an answer on my own, so I decided to ask Twitter for its help, which is also stupid. One should really never ask Twitter much about anything. I did get some input, both for the most part the general consensus was it’s bad luck to change a horse’s name. So with that being said, I guess he will remain as Playboy and I’ll just tell the niece and nephew they can call him Doc — for M.D. — for Mucho Dinero.

Jaclyn Wilson is more than a rancher, raising Red Angus cattle at Wilson Ranch near Lakeside, Nebraska. She’s an artist with a welder’s torch. She holds leadership positions with several agriculture organizations. She can be reached at   

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Jaclyn Wilson raises Red Angus cattle at Wilson Ranch near Lakeside, Nebraska. Send comments to her at

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