DESCRIPTION OF THE OPERATION:
KK Ranch and Siskiyou Percherons consists of registered Angus and Hereford cattle, registered Percheron draft horses, Quarter Horses and Thoroughbreds, Warmbloods, hay (Alfalfa, Grass/Alfalfa, Meadow Grass) and grain (used in rotation with Alfalfa).
CATTLE: the cattle are raised to market bulls and replacements heifers to commercial cattlemen. Ten percent of the heifers are retained, ten percent of the bull calves are kept to market at sales in the fall, ten percent of the bull calves will be kept and fed out for local marketing and the remaining heifers and steer calves are sold at the Shasta Livestock Auction. The Hereford herd is calved out in two groups, one in the fall and the other in the spring, while the Angus are entirely spring calving. Breeding is done via natural service and artificial insemination with some embryo transfer possible in the near future. Replacement heifers are fed a balanced ration to attain proper body condition pre-breeding and then run with the rest of the herd for the remainder of the year. Sale bulls and feeder steers are fed balanced rations in hillside pens until they reach their sale date or end point. During a typical year, cattle graze in pasture from April through October and are fed hay, due to winter conditions and lack of grass, from November through March. Expected progeny differences and ultra sound data are used along with phenotype evaluation when making selection decisions.
HORSES: the horses are predominately run with the cattle on pasture. Pasture breeding is utilized and foals are born under close supervision in a special foaling stall at the barn. Upon birth, all foals are imprinted and then around day 7 are sent back out to pasture. At weaning, foals are kept at the barn and fed balanced rations to ensure proper growth and development. We typically start training for riding and driving around the second year. Some, however, due to physical maturation are started early or later. Additionally, horses are also boarded and trained for outside customers. All training that occurs on the ranch is through Natural Philosophy.
FARMING: the crops, pasture included, is irrigated through a variety of techniques including flood irrigation, handline with guns, wheelline and a central pivot system. Method of water application is determined by effectiveness, efficiency and appropriateness, based on crop, soil type and shape and size of field. Flood water is all adjudicated and the diversions are environmentally friendly, having screens, measurable head gates and permanent water diversion structures that do not require mechanical access to the streams. Additionally, over a mile of river restoration has been implemented including bank stabilization, habitat planting and fencing.
Due to our growing season, we typically are able get three cutting from the Alfalfa and two from the grass, unlike the central valley of California which is able to get an average of six to eight cuttings. However, we are still able to produce six tons per acre on the Alfalfa.