Thursday, April 22, 2010

Gobe Ranch and Marty's visit with his team


Apr. 22nd, 2010

I awoke early to a beautiful morning with the birds singing and the air fresh and clean.  I headed outside so that I wouldn’t bother the other guys when my family called.  It turned out to be a nice walk by myself without a phone call.
The beautiful Ethiopian mountain  pastures
At about 6:30 I made it back to the house.  Mulgeta was up so we went over to the corrals and started breeding the animals.  He did three of the four and probably could have done the forth but he felt her kidney and thought that she was pregnant so he had me check her.  I went ahead and placed the gun into the uterus then had him go in to feel what it was like.  I am glad that he has picked up on breeding so quickly.

We went back to the house and were just finishing our breakfast when Marty’s group arrived.  We shared our bread and bananas with them before we headed out for a tour.  We spent a couple of hours walking around the compound and talking about the progress of the project.  Zerihun went over the financial reporting with Abera, Nageso, and Mulgeta.  It has been great to have Marty as part of the team to provide leadership and stability to the financial side of the business.


Abera took the truck over to load it with grass hay for the cow at the compound while I packed up the suitcases.  It started to pour down rain and we were concerned that we would not be able to get out.  Abera said, “We are in God’s hands we will get out.”  He was right even though it was raining hard the road was still firm enough that we made it out.
The graded-up  Arsi-Holstein cross milking cows
Mulgeta had arranged a meeting for us with Tsegaye at the Gobe Ranch.  It was a government ranch similar to Kokosa that has now been privatized.  He has 1600 hectares of the most beautiful land that you will ever see.  Tsegaye took us on a tour and explained what he was doing with his cattle.  He has a base herd of Arsi cows that he breeds AI to Holstein bulls.  The crossed animals are then bred back to the Holstein bulls again.  He has some nice facilities for Ethiopia and his cows look fantastic.  He also milks about 70 head of the cows and gets 3 to 4 liters a day from them.  They turn the calves in with the mothers then pull them off after the milk has let down.  They milk out the cow then let the calf have the last of the milk.
Cows being milked at the Gobe Ranch
He invited us to have a drink with him so I had some fresh hot milk.  Then he ordered ingera with cabbage, wot, and ibe.  I am almost getting to the point that I enjoy the Ethiopian food.

We drove back to the compound and unloaded the grass hay for the cow and I implanted her with an embryo.  I hope that she will settle this time. It has been a year since she calved and I am concerned that her milk production will come to an end.

I dropped off Mulgeta and Abera at their homes then drove back to the Lilly Valley in the pouring rain.  Joe arrived when I was sitting down for dinner so we ate together.  I was a little constipated so I just had a salad for dinner.  The salad had a cup of water, lemon and vinegar in the bottom of it.  I used my bread to sop it all up. Probably not the smartest thing to do because the water is not the cleanest but it tasted good. I am becoming a little to careless when I eat here.

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