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Branding Heifers, Weaning Bull Calves
12 August 2008
page 2 of 4
Sean Sexton lights the furnace to heat the brands. A handful of heifers got a slight reprieve from being branded a few days ago when heavy rain passed through but now their time has come.
Propane gas feeds the furnace heating the branding irons. One iron holds the Treasure Hammock brand while the others are numbers running from zero to nine.
The irons turn red hot inside the furnace.
Sean Sexton and Clyde Scent search for a particular iron.
Each heifer is branded with a specific number along with the year of its birth. Ralph Sexton, seated, makes sure the records are accurate.
The head catch holds the heifer immobile in the squeeze chute to ensure that branding goes as smoothly and as quickly as possible.
The brands are applied directly to the hide. The record-keeping numbers are placed on the hip.
The Treasure Hammock brand is applied to the shoulder. The image above right shows the stylized brand on a cow, a combined "T" and "H" representing Treasure Hammock Ranch.
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Florida Cattle Ranch by Bob Montanaro
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