GFM Network News


This mother cow readily accepted a grafted calf after her own died.

Spring mishaps and hardships but still hope

Eppich News: Though for different reasons, problems just seem to work out

On March 23 we had another mishap — a four-day-old heifer calf got stepped on and we lost her. Later that same day we went over to Lee and Erica Redlich’s, neighbours by Landis, to pick up the pig they butchered for us. We had a very nice visit with them and Lee’s father Terry. […] Read more

Used utility poles and damaged grain bins provided 
materials for this calving shelter.

Thinking outside the bin

Telephone poles and damaged grain bins turned into sturdy calf shelter

Due to the ever-increasing prices of building materials, we try to always keep our eyes and our minds open to anything that can be repurposed. Our small herd of cows is growing and as it grows, we have to keep our facilities growing as well. One thing we encountered this year, thanks to the lingering […] Read more


Despite cold temperatures this newborn calf is up and nursing.

Calving season improved after a sad start

Eppich News: Extra attention was needed to get cattle through a cold February

February was cold! Temperatures were frigid and the wind was terrible. On Feb. 17 we bedded our corrals and sorted off our heifers to keep them up front where we could keep an eye on them. It was a good thing but for a different reason than we had in mind. On Feb.19 we doctored […] Read more

Homemade wire holder with components for rolling out 
used wire.

Made-on-the-farm device for handling wire

Used parts here, sucker rod there, 
and a bit of welding

Building new fence can be a big job and can require different tools that a rancher or farmer doesn’t always own. For example, new fence requires a system to unroll the wire. Rather than purchase an unroller, we decided to try to make one. My father-in-law, John, built a very simple unroller that we could […] Read more


Gregory making sure cattle have feed, good bedding and shelter during the February cold snap.

Spring pasture fenced and ready

February got cold and then got colder

January turned out to be a decent month for a variety of projects. On Jan. 14 the temperature was liveable and the wind was down so we decided it would be a good day to skin an old, crippled cow for our friends Bill and Betty. We were supposed to get to her earlier so […] Read more

Banding properly applied worked well to remove mature horns 
with minimal discomfort.

Banding worked well for dehorning

Cattle displayed some discomfort but it didn't last long

Cattle with horns can be anything from an irritant to a real problem for producers. They are usually more aggressive than the polled or dehorned animals because they know they have a weapon. They can hurt other cattle by head butting them to get them to move away from feed or water. They can also […] Read more


When a crowbar isn’t enough on frozen ground, a powered auger 
can get a hole started.

Tips for fencing on frozen ground

It may take a little longer, but at least the job gets done

With the 2018 harvest dragging out into late fall and a backlog of fall work to do, we weren’t too excited about trying our fencing project in the winter. We had over three miles of fence that needed to be built before spring. Our biggest concern was that the frost would be too deep and […] Read more



Gregory checking heifers and horses 
at the feed trough.

Some chores are planned, some aren’t

Tending cows, horses, bulls and buying heifers keep days busy

On November 11 we took a day off from fencing and drove up to Maidstone to visit David and Maxine Mitchell and pick out a few bred heifers. This will be our third year buying heifers from River Bridge Herefords and we have been very happy with them. A few days later we brought our […] Read more

Once harvest was done, it was time to get busy with major fencing project.

Fall projects are off to a good start

The Eppich News: Good progress made with a major fencing job

The end of October brought us some much-needed nice weather. We were able to finish harvest, but it took a lot of fiddling around, trying some here and then trying some there. Finally the crop dried to a moisture level that we could handle. We took every truck and trailer that would hold grain out […] Read more