Friday, December 14, 2012

Corriente Steer

This is Cory, our Corriente steer when he arrived the end of September. Looks pretty rough doesn't he. He weighed in at 660 pounds.
This is Cory now. Yeah, a huge difference of at least a couple hundred pounds. I'm going another month to a month and a half feeding him before he goes in the freezer in white packages.
I pulled up a Corriente site and found this breed is indeed sold most often for steer roping. In part because of the horns. 
They are raised in areas where the countryside is tough and feed not as lush for they forage better than the standard beef cattle.
 I don't know exactly the figures since we have Gracie, our yak, in with him but it seems to take forever for him to put on any serious amount of weight but then maybe how skinny he was when he arrived had something to do with it.  My dad, an ex rancher, has it figured out cost wise. He now finishes off feeding a few cattle and when they go to butcher he and his neighbors share the meat.
They pay for the cattle and he pays for the feed and he provides the labor. A pretty good deal. That means he feeds everything from a Angus bull, to Corriente steer, and this year even a beefalo.
 What's a beefalo? Well, a part buffalo and part beef. He was huge. Probably about 1500 pounds when finished.
The Corriente meat is said to be more the color and texture of elk. It has less marbling and is therefore more healthy. I'm all for that but mostly price was the factor this year in our decision to buy this breed of cattle. Still I can't wait to taste this beef as it is reported to have a mildly different flavor. I love trying new things.
One caution I found in raising Corrientes is they do jump fence with the greatest of ease. They are more flighty also. That is why I spent time taming Cory right off and I keep a hay feeder full in front of him at all times.

Have any of you raised Corriente cattle?
A side note, after watching the neighbors raise a couple Holstein calves and two Angus beef calves side by side, my predjudice against dairy cattle for beef melted away. Those Holstein calves really grew. I guess you could say in the last few years my ideas of beef have greatly changed and I'm now looking for bargains not Angus beef alone. It is not only the experience alone but shear dollar signs that has swayed me away from being so singular in my selection.

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