Peacock

Peacock
Peacock

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Roundup Preparations

The pace of work is picking up as we, and visiting helpers, rush to get everything in place for Roundup which happens Monday and Tuesday.  The bison have to all get to the holding area from where they will be brought down to the corals, the corals have to have modifications and upkeep finished, the old slaughter house has to get cleaned up - and pigeons cleared out, the generator and extra restrooms brought in, the packs of materials needed for the Roundup readied, and the food and drinks for the volunteers organized. The Visitor Center people are also getting the educational materials ready to use with the many school groups that are coming.

My jobs have involved cleaning, sorting, packing, and painting. I still have green fingers from painting several plywood panels which were attached to a tall fence made of drilling pipe.  I think this is to hide people from the bison calves as they come out of the squeeze chute.  I'll know more after seeing the roundup in action.

First  paint job included a lot of touchups and this metal door. 

The most exciting part of the preparations was the bringing in of the bison. I got to go watch the riders get their horses ready, haul them to the furthest place large numbers of  bison were grazing, then watch the start of the drive.  Other staff and volunteers were hunting down the bison before hand.



My boss, Amy, getting her horse ready while other helpers chat
Frances walks off a little of his horse's excitement before putting him in the trailer



Amy is ready to go but has to wait on the guys to finish tacking up


Frances walks off a little of his horse's excitement before putting him in the trailer



Amy is ready to go but has to wait on the guys to finish tacking up

At the start of the roundup

Marlin and his horse are both looking for bison - but is that an old bull sneaking away behind them?

A group of bison moving way ahead of the horsemen - red calf - less than two months old

Dean and Brent ride across what looks like endless prairie

Behind bison on the move

The pronghorns were interested in the bison and the horseman,
when they were still very distant

Then I drove back to the corals and waited for the end of the drive, when almost 400 head of bison came running through a gate and into the field where I was sitting in my truck.


The end of the drive with the drivers now close behind the bison and yelling. 

These bison are right outside my truck and are in the right field to easily retrieve for Roundup

The bison were moved Friday morning.  I worked all day Thursday on cleaning, Friday afternoon on painting, most of the day Saturday on painting and will have a few hours of painting left for Sunday plus I'll be helping other people. Then we'll start at 6:00 A on Monday to have everything ready for the Roundup to start at 8:30 A. M.