Branding of the calves is ranchers’ rite of spring

Ed Heil, center, administers vaccine to the calf as helper Lynn Rissel, far right, looks on. The vaccine provides a variety of protections against problems with the calves, including pink eye.

Ed Heil, right, watches as brother Dale Heil continues the branding of the calf on the Heil Ranch, located west of Meeker. It takes the use of three branding irons to brand the calves, which also makes it a tough job that the calves aren’t happy with. The Heils run black angus, red angus, herefords and black baldies on the ranch, which is in excess of 400 acres with a lease of more than 1,000 other acres.
Ed Heil, right, watches as brother Dale Heil continues the branding of the calf on the Heil Ranch, located west of Meeker. It takes the use of three branding irons to brand the calves, which also makes it a tough job that the calves aren’t happy with. The Heils run black angus, red angus, herefords and black baldies on the ranch, which is in excess of 400 acres with a lease of more than 1,000 other acres.

Lynn Rissel, left, watches as Dale Heil, right, tags the calf’s ear while Ed Heil, center, administers vaccine to the calf.
Lynn Rissel, left, watches as Dale Heil, right, tags the calf’s ear while Ed Heil, center, administers vaccine to the calf.
Roughly 23 calves needed to be branded on Friday morning and afternoon at the Heil Ranch, located west of Meeker along Highway 64. All the cow and calf separating and getting the calves into the right pens and the cows turned out to pasture was all done on foot. Involved in the real work of the day were Dale Heil, Ed Heil, Lynn Rissell and Terry Anderson.
Roughly 23 calves needed to be branded on Friday morning and afternoon at the Heil Ranch, located west of Meeker along Highway 64. All the cow and calf separating and getting the calves into the right pens and the cows turned out to pasture was all done on foot. Involved in the real work of the day were Dale Heil, Ed Heil, Lynn Rissell and Terry Anderson.
Dale Heil tries to squeeze his arms between the bars to gain access to the calf’s scrotum, which has a small rubber band placed between the testicles and the base. Over a short period of time, the testicles, due to a lack of blood, atrophy and fall off, eliminating the need to use a knife to cut out the testicles.
Dale Heil tries to squeeze his arms between the bars to gain access to the calf’s scrotum, which has a small rubber band placed between the testicles and the base. Over a short period of time, the testicles, due to a lack of blood, atrophy and fall off, eliminating the need to use a knife to cut out the testicles.
Ed Heil, center, administers vaccine to the calf as helper Lynn Rissel, far right, looks on. The vaccine provides a variety of protections against problems with the calves, including pink eye.
Ed Heil, center, administers vaccine to the calf as helper Lynn Rissel, far right, looks on. The vaccine provides a variety of protections against problems with the calves, including pink eye.