Big Momma Cows

Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of your favorite breed.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by Ky hills » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:09 pm

I am a believer in that cow size and calf weaning weights should be a happy medium. A small cow may wean of a calf of comparable to a larger cow in percentage of weaning weight to cow weight. The larger cow will likely wean a larger calf, but not always, and is the extra input worth the extra weight. Those are all situations each individual had to evaluate for themselves. I used to have Charolais, average cow was probably 1550 or bigger. I could wean off calves at around 800 lbs consistently. My largest weaned calf was right at 900 at around 8 months. Now with smaller but still larger than the elusive 1200lb cow, my Angus and Hereford cows are weaning calves around 500-600. These cows are not requiring the amount of supplement that the others did, and also we are weaning the calves a little sooner too.



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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by True Grit Farms » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:13 pm

Brookhill Angus wrote:
True Grit Farms wrote:You guys are talking about cattle that work for you and your environment. Some folks like cattle that you have to work for. But there's no denying they look good in the front pasture by the road belly deep in green.


Mine are belly deep in mud AND in the front pasture. In fact the front 50 acres of my farm looks like a WW2 battlefield, thanks to our lovely weather. Our frontage fence is rusted woven wire, put in during 1970’s, everything else is poly wire. Our “front barn” is a complete pile of crap, paint peeling, roof rusted, out front gates are rusted, mounted on rotting wood.

Just wanted to paint an accurate picture of how our operation looks. The cattle however look very good.

We will be going to to near zero this weekend, I have wondered how some of the cattle that have been neglected in our area will make it through without food. I doubt their owners will be suffering in the same way.

We've been feeding almost everyday this week getting the cow ready for the cold nasty weather. I'll keep feeding till the weather gets decent. We're lucky to have a lot of rank hay to use as bedding, that for some reason in a month the cows will end up eating most of it. Around here lots of folks are going to be crying the blues in a week or two.
If we'd of know this we'd of picked our own cotton.

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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by True Grit Farms » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:15 pm

Ky hills wrote:I am a believer in that cow size and calf weaning weights should be a happy medium. A small cow may wean of a calf of comparable to a larger cow in percentage of weaning weight to cow weight. The larger cow will likely wean a larger calf, but not always, and is the extra input worth the extra weight. Those are all situations each individual had to evaluate for themselves. I used to have Charolais, average cow was probably 1550 or bigger. I could wean off calves at around 800 lbs consistently. My largest weaned calf was right at 900 at around 8 months. Now with smaller but still larger than the elusive 1200lb cow, my Angus and Hereford cows are weaning calves around 500-600. These cows are not requiring the amount of supplement that the others did, and also we are weaning the calves a little sooner too.

Normally 500 to 600 lbs is usually the sweet spot price wise around here.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by Jeanne - Simme Valley » Fri Jan 18, 2019 3:59 pm

We have been fighting mud seems like for ever. Spring - summer - fall - and beginning of winter. We have "mostly" frozen up. But, now everything is ankle breaking - or axle breaking!! Luckily, I don't normally have to drive out where the cattle are kept, so not rutting up their area - they do well enough on their own.
Have a few inches of snow on ground, expecting a few feet Saturday & Sunday. That would be great now that most of the ground is frozen.
We will be loading everything up tomorrow - including bedding the calf sheds. Been on a lull in our calving (vacation time last year). But, now have 9 due 23-31st. Putting 3 in barn starting last night. Will put couple more in tomorrow night. Not only do we expect heavy snow, also strong winds & down to 0 F.
Should kick a few cows into labor! We have 12 on the ground from 1st week in Jan - all bulls/steers except TWO heifers.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by Brookhill Angus » Fri Jan 18, 2019 10:42 pm

Ky hills wrote:
Brookhill Angus wrote:
True Grit Farms wrote:You guys are talking about cattle that work for you and your environment. Some folks like cattle that you have to work for. But there's no denying they look good in the front pasture by the road belly deep in green.


Mine are belly deep in mud AND in the front pasture. In fact the front 50 acres of my farm looks like a WW2 battlefield, thanks to our lovely weather. Our frontage fence is rusted woven wire, put in during 1970’s, everything else is poly wire. Our “front barn” is a complete pile of crap, paint peeling, roof rusted, out front gates are rusted, mounted on rotting wood.

Just wanted to paint an accurate picture of how our operation looks. The cattle however look very good.

We will be going to to near zero this weekend, I have wondered how some of the cattle that have been neglected in our area will make it through without food. I doubt their owners will be suffering in the same way.


Mud here too, pastures and everything else looks pretty rough too. I have been getting out some feed to the weaned calves and most days to the bred heifers, the field of mature cows that are calving now are getting feed mostly every other day but been two days since they have had grain. Since my mother has been in the hospital they are all darn lucky to get a roll a day of low quality hay, which this morning I put out at 2 am. I try hard to provide for our cattle especially in winter. Bothers me to see fields of skin and bones cattle, I see some cattle around that I don't know how they survive but evidently some do. An old friend used to have a saying "February shakes them and March takes them".


We have been preparing all week for the God awful weather that is headed our way in the next few days. It looks like 2 or more inches or rain, with mud getting deeper and deeper, creeks flooding, then freezing rain, then snow and then into the low teens. I see people that are doing little to nothing to make sure their cattle are taken care of ahead of this big storm.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by gcreekrch » Sat Jan 19, 2019 12:25 am

I am sorry that many of you are having the winter from proverbial h3ll. Makes me quite happy to live where I do in the frozen north.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by gcreekrch » Sat Jan 19, 2019 12:30 am

Brookhill Angus wrote:
Ebenezer wrote:I've had huge cows on grass only. It was a genetic issue and I quit using those genetics and sold those cows. It proved nothing to me except a big cow eats more than an average sized cow that most commercial producers want.


Stone Gate has 450 registered cows, they all pretty much look like then photo I posted, they all eat grass and hay. They probably have another 400-500 commercial cows as well. For some reason their business model has worked for 67 years. Their clients seem to like their cows and their cows are big overall. They also have high DMI and $EN EPD’s.

If the commercial producer does not appreciate size in their cattle, then why are they constantly searching outcross combinations to increase frame. Around here everyone is crazy about Gelbvieh, they say “I can’t get any size out of Angus”, which is a myth, look at SAV.

As a commercial producer if you are actively seeking lower weaning weights and RADG you may want to reevaluate your business plan.


The only thing I seek from a cow is a profit.

If that can be achieved from 480 lb average calves from the moderate to small cows we have in our management that is all I will ask of my cows.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by sim.-ang.king » Sat Jan 19, 2019 2:25 am

Brookhill Angus wrote:
Ky hills wrote:
Brookhill Angus wrote:
Mine are belly deep in mud AND in the front pasture. In fact the front 50 acres of my farm looks like a WW2 battlefield, thanks to our lovely weather. Our frontage fence is rusted woven wire, put in during 1970’s, everything else is poly wire. Our “front barn” is a complete pile of crap, paint peeling, roof rusted, out front gates are rusted, mounted on rotting wood.

Just wanted to paint an accurate picture of how our operation looks. The cattle however look very good.

We will be going to to near zero this weekend, I have wondered how some of the cattle that have been neglected in our area will make it through without food. I doubt their owners will be suffering in the same way.


Mud here too, pastures and everything else looks pretty rough too. I have been getting out some feed to the weaned calves and most days to the bred heifers, the field of mature cows that are calving now are getting feed mostly every other day but been two days since they have had grain. Since my mother has been in the hospital they are all darn lucky to get a roll a day of low quality hay, which this morning I put out at 2 am. I try hard to provide for our cattle especially in winter. Bothers me to see fields of skin and bones cattle, I see some cattle around that I don't know how they survive but evidently some do. An old friend used to have a saying "February shakes them and March takes them".


We have been preparing all week for the God awful weather that is headed our way in the next few days. It looks like 2 or more inches or rain, with mud getting deeper and deeper, creeks flooding, then freezing rain, then snow and then into the low teens. I see people that are doing little to nothing to make sure their cattle are taken care of ahead of this big storm.


I had no clue people in Kentucky were so neglecting of their animals.
Must be piles of dead cows a mile high. Buzzards on ever fence post. Feed everywhere but no one remembers to give it to their cows?
Must be quite a place.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by Stocker Steve » Sat Jan 19, 2019 5:20 am

gcreekrch wrote: The only thing I seek from a cow is a profit.

If that can be achieved from 480 lb average calves from the moderate to small cows we have in our management that is all I will ask of my cows.


Sold five shiny 1594 # average wt. cows this week for U$S 925 each.
They were on cow hay and a little oats.
Sounds like an OK price in this market but it only comes to 58 cents.
If these cows could wean a 480 # calf I might have kept them.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by ddd75 » Sat Jan 19, 2019 6:29 am

sim.-ang.king wrote:
Brookhill Angus wrote:
Ky hills wrote:
Mud here too, pastures and everything else looks pretty rough too. I have been getting out some feed to the weaned calves and most days to the bred heifers, the field of mature cows that are calving now are getting feed mostly every other day but been two days since they have had grain. Since my mother has been in the hospital they are all darn lucky to get a roll a day of low quality hay, which this morning I put out at 2 am. I try hard to provide for our cattle especially in winter. Bothers me to see fields of skin and bones cattle, I see some cattle around that I don't know how they survive but evidently some do. An old friend used to have a saying "February shakes them and March takes them".


We have been preparing all week for the God awful weather that is headed our way in the next few days. It looks like 2 or more inches or rain, with mud getting deeper and deeper, creeks flooding, then freezing rain, then snow and then into the low teens. I see people that are doing little to nothing to make sure their cattle are taken care of ahead of this big storm.


I had no clue people in Kentucky were so neglecting of their animals.
Must be piles of dead cows a mile high. Buzzards on ever fence post. Feed everywhere but no one remembers to give it to their cows?
Must be quite a place.



yes.. no one even reads the cows a story before bedtime around here..

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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by True Grit Farms » Sat Jan 19, 2019 6:52 am

Stocker Steve wrote:
gcreekrch wrote: The only thing I seek from a cow is a profit.

If that can be achieved from 480 lb average calves from the moderate to small cows we have in our management that is all I will ask of my cows.


Sold five shiny 1594 # average wt. cows this week for U$S 925 each.
They were on cow hay and a little oats.
Sounds like an OK price in this market but it only comes to 58 cents.
If these cows could wean a 480 # calf I might have kept them.


Could you expand on why a little more? I take it they came up open?
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by Bright Raven » Sat Jan 19, 2019 7:43 am

sim.-ang.king wrote:
Brookhill Angus wrote:
Ky hills wrote:
Mud here too, pastures and everything else looks pretty rough too. I have been getting out some feed to the weaned calves and most days to the bred heifers, the field of mature cows that are calving now are getting feed mostly every other day but been two days since they have had grain. Since my mother has been in the hospital they are all darn lucky to get a roll a day of low quality hay, which this morning I put out at 2 am. I try hard to provide for our cattle especially in winter. Bothers me to see fields of skin and bones cattle, I see some cattle around that I don't know how they survive but evidently some do. An old friend used to have a saying "February shakes them and March takes them".


We have been preparing all week for the God awful weather that is headed our way in the next few days. It looks like 2 or more inches or rain, with mud getting deeper and deeper, creeks flooding, then freezing rain, then snow and then into the low teens. I see people that are doing little to nothing to make sure their cattle are taken care of ahead of this big storm.


I had no clue people in Kentucky were so neglecting of their animals.
Must be piles of dead cows a mile high. Buzzards on ever fence post. Feed everywhere but no one remembers to give it to their cows?
Must be quite a place.


The storm is upon us my friend. I finished my routine and sought shelter. I didn't do anything I don't do as a routine.

It is difficult to quantify how many producers neglect their cattle or horses in Kentucky but enough that it aggravates the County Judge Executives who get all the complaints.

UPDATE: The cows on US 62 that I posted pictures of, I went by their feed area yesterday. There was one lone fall black calf wandering around in the mud. Head down, moving very slowly. No other cow in sight. On the hillside above the feed area, there were 3 huge masses of buzzards, I presume on dead cows. I don't have any idea what happened. Perhaps the owner gave up and shipped them all and left the one calf. (A heII of a way to get weaned)
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by gcreekrch » Sat Jan 19, 2019 8:29 am

Stocker Steve wrote:
gcreekrch wrote: The only thing I seek from a cow is a profit.

If that can be achieved from 480 lb average calves from the moderate to small cows we have in our management that is all I will ask of my cows.


Sold five shiny 1594 # average wt. cows this week for U$S 925 each.
They were on cow hay and a little oats.
Sounds like an OK price in this market but it only comes to 58 cents.
If these cows could wean a 480 # calf I might have kept them.


I haven't owned a 1600 lb cow in 20 years or more. Had one in 2016 that weighed 1420. She came up open that year and weaned a 600 lb calf. Likely the last calf we raised that big.

Another point that hasn't been raised in this thread is how old these 800 lb + weaners are. Ours average 185 days when they cross the scale.
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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by Silver » Sat Jan 19, 2019 9:09 am

gcreekrch wrote:
Stocker Steve wrote:
gcreekrch wrote: The only thing I seek from a cow is a profit.

If that can be achieved from 480 lb average calves from the moderate to small cows we have in our management that is all I will ask of my cows.


Sold five shiny 1594 # average wt. cows this week for U$S 925 each.
They were on cow hay and a little oats.
Sounds like an OK price in this market but it only comes to 58 cents.
If these cows could wean a 480 # calf I might have kept them.


I haven't owned a 1600 lb cow in 20 years or more. Had one in 2016 that weighed 1420. She came up open that year and weaned a 600 lb calf. Likely the last calf we raised that big.

Another point that hasn't been raised in this thread is how old these 800 lb + weaners are. Ours average 185 days when they cross the scale.


Lithuanian Farmer listed a bunch of ages and weights of calves from local producers.
I've posted mine enough times I think it's getting to be old news :lol2:

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Re: Big Momma Cows

Post by Bright Raven » Sat Jan 19, 2019 9:11 am

gcreekrch wrote:
Stocker Steve wrote:
gcreekrch wrote: The only thing I seek from a cow is a profit.

If that can be achieved from 480 lb average calves from the moderate to small cows we have in our management that is all I will ask of my cows.


Sold five shiny 1594 # average wt. cows this week for U$S 925 each.
They were on cow hay and a little oats.
Sounds like an OK price in this market but it only comes to 58 cents.
If these cows could wean a 480 # calf I might have kept them.


I haven't owned a 1600 lb cow in 20 years or more. Had one in 2016 that weighed 1420. She came up open that year and weaned a 600 lb calf. Likely the last calf we raised that big.

Another point that hasn't been raised in this thread is how old these 800 lb + weaners are. Ours average 185 days when they cross the scale.


Dave: sounds like your weaning weights don't "mash the scales". ;-)

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