Friday, January 30, 2009

Texas Longhorn Cattle

The Texas longhorn is the State's Largest Mammal.
The Texas longhorn is an official symbol for the city of
Fort Worth, Texas, which is nicknamed "Cowtown".
The Longhorns is the name used for the sports teams of The University of Texas at Austin; the school colors white and burnt orange recall the natural coloring of the animals. The school mascot is a longhorn named Bevo.
Texas Parks and Wildlife maintain an official "State Longhorn Herd", created by Sid Richardson and J. Frank Dobie. Portions of the herd are kept at various state parks within Texas.
Around 1933, pioneer
Texas Longhorn breeder Graves Peeler mentioned that some of the Longhorn cattle that he had been collecting recently were for the western movie star Tom Mix, and over the years at least four other publications repeated the Tom Mix story. Later, it became known that Mr. Peeler was actually collecting the cattle for western movie star and Columbia Records recording star Gene Autry.
The 1966 film
The Rare Breed starring James Stewart charts the replacement of Texas Longhorns in the 1880s by British Hereford Cattle.
The first cattle to set foot in North America and the only breed of cattle to evolve without human management, the Texas Longhorn can thrive in country where no other breed can live; subsist on weeds, cactus and brush; range days away from water; and stay fit and fertile whether it’s living in the scorching, parasite-infested tropics or in the arid, subzero winters of Montana.
The leaner longhorn beef was not as attractive in an era where
tallow was highly prized, and the longhorn's ability to survive on often poor vegetation of the open range was no longer as much of an issue. Other breeds demonstrated traits more highly valued by the modern rancher, such as the ability to put on weight quickly. The Texas longhorn stock slowly dwindled, until in 1927 the breed was saved from almost certain extinction by enthusiasts from the United States Forest Service, who collected a small herd of stock to breed on a refuge in Oklahoma. A few years later, J. Frank Dobie and others gathered small herds to keep in Texas state parks. They were cared for largely as curiosities, but the stock's longevity, resistance to disease and ability to thrive on marginal pastures quickly revived the breed as beef stock. Today, the breed is still used as a beef stock, though many Texas ranchers keep herds purely because of their link to Texas history.
In other parts of North America this breed is used for much more. Longhorn cattle have a strong survival instinct and can find food and shelter during times of rough weather. Longhorn calves are very tough and can stand up sooner after birth than other breeds. Longhorn cattle can breed for a long time, well into their teens. There have been cows that have bred for up to thirty years. Some ranchers keep Longhorns for their easy calving. A Longhorn cow will often go off on her own to a safe place to have the calf then bring it home. They are also known to hide their calves in safe places to avoid predation, sometimes causing difficulty for ranchers, who may need to work on the animal.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Prior to the 1836 declaration of Texan independence from Mexico, the "Lone Star State" had a number of flags. English-speaking settlers and filibusters from the United States hoisted different banners as symbols of their self-declared "republics." The flag of the "Texan Republic" that James Long attempted to establish circa 1819-20 had 13 red and white horizontal stripes and a white star on a red canton. Two stripes, white over red, represented the 1826 "Republic of Fredonia," and a number of other striped flags later appeared. One, created by Sarah Dodson, had vertical stripes of blue-white-red with a star on the hoist stripe. It is supposed to have flown over Washington-on-the-Brazos when Texas independence was proclaimed March 2, 1836.The first official (though nonnational) Texas flag was based on the green-white-red vertical tricolor of Mexico. It was established on November 3, 1835, for use by local ships. The date 1824 on the center stripe emphasized adherence to the federalist policies of the 1824 Mexican constitution and, hence, opposition to centralist control. That flag is believed to have flown at the Alamo when it was besieged by Mexican forces in 1836. The first official national flag of Texas, adopted on December 10, 1836, was blue with a central yellow star. The republic's naval flag resembled the banner displayed by James Long in 1819, except that the canton was blue rather than red. The colors and the stripes and star symbols in the Texas flag were derived from those of the U.S. flag. The present state flag was originally adopted on January 25, 1839, as the second national flag of the Republic of Texas. There was no change in the design when Texas became a state of the United States in 1845, nor in 1861 when it became part of the Confederacy.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Texas Ice Storm January 2009

An ice storm is a type of winter storm characterized by freezing rain, also known as a glaze event or in some parts of the United States as a silver thaw. The U.S. National Weather Service defines an ice storm as a storm which results in the accumulation of at least 0.25-inch (0.64 cm) of ice on exposed surfaces. From 1982 to 1994, ice storms were more common than blizzards and averaged 16 per year.
Ice storms occur when a layer of warm air is between two layers of cold air. Frozen precipitation melts while falling into the warm air layer, and then proceeds to refreeze in the cold layer above the ground. If the precipitate is partially melted, it will land on the ground as sleet. However, if the warm layer completely melts the precipitate, becoming rain, the liquid droplets will continue to fall, and pass through a thin layer of cold air just above the surface. This thin layer of air then cools the rain to a temperature below freezing (0 °C). However, the drops themselves do not freeze, a phenomenon called supercooling (or forming "supercooled drops"). When the supercooled drops strike ground below 0 °C or anything else below 0 °C (power lines, tree branches, air craft), they instantly freeze, forming a thin film of ice, hence freezing rain.
While meteorologists can predict when and where an ice storm will occur, some storms still occur with little or no warning. Most ice storms are thought to form primarily in the north-eastern US, but damaging storms have occurred farther south. An ice storm in February 1994 resulted in tremendous ice accumulation as far south as Mississippi, and caused reported damage in nine states. More timber was damaged than that caused by
Hurricane Camille. An ice storm in eastern Washington in November 1996 directly followed heavy snowfall. The combined weight of the snow and 25 millimetres (0.98 in) to 37 millimetres (1.5 in) of ice caused considerable widespread damage. This was considered to be the most severe ice storm in the Spokane area since 1940.
The freezing rain from an ice storm covers everything with heavy, smooth glaze ice. Ice-covered roads become slippery and hazardous, as the ice causes vehicles to skid out of control, which can cause devastating car crashes as well as pile-ups. Pedestrians are severely affected as sidewalks become slippery, causing people to slip and fall, and outside stairs can become an extreme injury hazard.
In addition to hazardous driving or walking conditions, branches or even whole trees may break from the weight of ice. Falling branches can block roads, tear down power and telephone lines, and cause other damage. Even without falling trees and tree branches, the weight of the ice itself can easily snap power lines and also break and bring down power/utility poles; even steel frame
electricity pylons have been sent crashing to the ground by the weight of the ice. This can leave people without power for anywhere from several days to a month. According to most meteorologists, just one quarter of an inch of ice accumulation can add about 500 pounds of weight per line span. Damage from ice storms is highly capable of shutting down entire metropolitan areas.

That's an Educated Definition...

Here is Texas We Call 'em Freakin' Frozen Messes!

(Amoung other things!)

Hopefully Anyone experiencing Radical weather will SURVIVE SAFELY!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Day Two

Thinking back to how it felt when it was not cold! And Leaves were on the trees!
Missed a day of work because of the weather. It really has not been bad and it's almost noon. Now I will have to work Saturday to make it up. Weathermen say there is more to come, and that it could get really bad. I should have went in, as I could have always come home. But was it worth the risk of an accident?
My pickup is 12 years old now, so I am not sure if the air bags still work! And I think of all those bridges between here and there!

It will be in the 60's Saturday while I am at work! UGH!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Day One

Well...the sun was not shining at that hour of the morning, but then it was Monday. Weathermen says rain......but then they changed it to winter storm warning, and NOW its an Ice Storm Warning.
Stick Around, It'll Change!