Slim Buttes Buffalo Ranch Owned and operated by Sandy, Jacki, Brodie, and Samantha Limpert.
Our Ranch is located in Harding County, South Dakota. We currently run 600 Cows and grass 750 yearlings.
Historically, our stocking rate is 30 acres per beef cow or 25 acres per buffalo cow.
Advantages Cows productive lifespan Annual production costs Very minimal weather related losses No labor input during calving Higher weaning rate percentage. Easily improved genetics. No imports outside of North America. An increasing consumer demand for a healthy red meat. Can winter in pastures without shelter. Disadvantages Learning Curve Conversion costs in fencing and facilities Learn to work with the Buffalo instead of against them Bison advantages and disadvantages
More Bison Advantages • An average beef cow produces 8 to 10 calves in her life. • An average Bison cow produces 17 to 20 calves in her life. • Bison cow salvage is worth $200 more than a beef cow. • Bison cows annual maintenance costs are $100 to $150 less than a beef cow.
Management Tips • Buy young Bison to start with, and learn with them. • Teach bison to lead with cake from a pickup. • Learn how your bison want to flow before completing your working facilities. • Bison get into a habit of seasonal movement throughout the ranch and like to stick to that pattern. • Don’t Build wedge shaped pens with gates in the narrow end. • When moving Bison, plan a day when you can move them into the wind. • Eliminate as much stress as possible when working and weaning calves.
Management Tips • Buy more young Bison than you want to end up with and cull the bottom end each year for cash flow. • Start with good fences and working facilities. • Tour several existing bison ranches and look at their handling facilities and fences. • Join your Local and National Bison Associations. • Use performance tested bulls. • When weaning calves, spread plenty of hay on the ground, as well as in feeders. • Cover your working facility.
Bison Advantage: Winter feeding costs on our buffalo cow herd is approximately ½ the cost of wintering our beef cows.
Approximate Conversion Costs for Fencing and Corrals • All new pasture fence: $150 to $200 per cow. • Retrofit existing fence: $50 to $75 per cow. • Working facilities: $50 to $75 per cow. • Cattle guards need to be at least 14 feet across.
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