FORSYTH, Mont. – As the Larsens welcome in a new year in 2021, they are already starting preparations for their annual bull sale in March.
From now until March, Tyler Larsen is inviting cattlemen to come out and view the yearling registered bulls in the sale.
“From now until sale day on March 22, buyers who are interested in the bulls can come out to the ranch and visit the bulls,” said Tyler, adding that the bulls are located on the ranch and are easy to access. “We know that starting in January and through April that it is calving season for many of our bull buyers, and we appreciate that they can take the time to check out our bulls.”
At Larsen Ranch Angus, Jim and Carin Larsen and their adult children and spouses, Wendy and Lafe Warren, Lori Vance, and Tyler and Tisha Larsen, and their families, work together to operate the seedstock and commercial Black Angus business.
Tyler also wanted to say a few words about his neighbors in the eastern Montana region.
“We are blessed to have amazing neighbors. It makes everything easier and way less stressful,” he said.
For their annual bull sale, the Larsens plan to sell some 130 performance yearling bulls at the ranch on March 22 at 1 p.m.
Tyler said that those who can’t make it out to the ranch could participate in the bull sale online.
In mid-January, individual pictures of the registered Angus bulls are being planned. Those photos will be used in the Larsen’s sale catalog that comes out in early March.
Since 1949, the Larsens have been raising the kind of seedstock Angus bulls that work well in the eastern Montana climate.
“We try to raise cattle for our environment and our bulls tend to work well for those in similar climates and terrain,” Tyler said. “Bull buyers are smart and know what works for them in their herd and we try to make a diverse set of bulls that will work for most producers.”
To meet the needs for this type of terrain, the Larsens balance carcass, maternal, strong feet and structure traits.
The registered Black Angus bulls were run through the chutes and trimmed Dec. 30.
“Vanek Cattle Services came out and clipped and trimmed all the bulls to prepare them for individual photos later this month,” Tyler said.
Prior to sale day, all the bulls in the sale will be ultrasounded and undergo breeding examinations, including being semen tested, and the individual data will also go into their sale catalog, along with photos.
“The bulls will be showcased on the Larsen website when all of the photos and data are collected,” he added.
To prepare their sale barn, the local FFA chapter in Forsyth comes out before sale day and sets up the barn. After the sale, they come back out and take it all down again.
“We really appreciate the help of our local FFA chapter,” Tyler said.
Tyler explained what happens on sale day.
“After the bulls are fed the morning of the sale, they are placed in pens right outside of the sale barn,” he said. “There are 10-12 bulls in each pen and the bulls are sorted in order of lot number.”
Prior to the sale, the Larsens and some of their neighbors get together to make Spudnuts (a donut made with potatoes) from scratch to serve on the morning of sale day. It is a tradition and special treat.
“We make around 500-600 donuts and frost them with sugar, maple and chocolate,” Wendy said. “As the buyers arrive, the ladies begin serving Spudnuts and coffee.”
Not only do the Larsens make Spudnuts for the sale, they also prepare a beef lunch, which is served at 11:30 a.m.
“We will have our usual menu, which is sliced roast beef, beans, frog-eyed salad, macaroni salad, veggies, Texas sheet cake and cookies,” she said. “Lots of our friends and neighbors join us for the meal and take the time to visit before and after the sale.”
At 1 p.m., the sale begins, with Roger Jacobs as their longtime auctioneer.
“We were one of the first Angus sales Roger did in the mid-1980s, and he has been our auctioneer for the sale ever since,” she said.
A few years ago, the Larsens decided not to run the bulls through the barn anymore.
“Now we have three giant TVs set up for the buyers inside, and we will also have an online live auction site available on sale day for those that cannot make it to the sale,” Wendy explained.
The weather has been mostly mild in the eastern region as the New Year begins.
“The weather remains very warm compared to most years. It has been in the 30s and 40s for the highs, with no snow over the past couple of weeks,” she said.
With the warmer conditions, feeding chores in the morning have been easy for the guys on the ranch.
“In past years, we have had lots of snow with a little bit of snow removal work needed prior to feeding the cattle,” Wendy said. “Yes, we need the moisture, but it has been easy to feed this month.”
Wendy added the Larsens want to “wish everyone a happy and healthy New Year.”
For more information on the Larsen’s bull sale, see their website at www.larsenranchangus.com. The bulls can be viewed at Larsen Ranch Angus, located 2.5 miles south of 1-94, exit 103.