Are calf chutes worth it?

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uplandnut

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I've heard the debates on here about which chutes are better and whether or not automatic headgate or scissor style, but I never hear anything about calf chutes? Are they a waste of money or are they pretty much all the same so no one really has much issue with them? I was looking at picking one up for the use of castrating and vaccinating calves in the fall and am curious if they're worth it or not and what things I should be looking at making sure it has and what things are just sales gimmicks. thanks
 

JMJ Farms

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TennesseeTuxedo":6ku0mcn0 said:
I think a calf table would be handy.

I think it would be nice to have one too. Especially if you were castrating 400+ pound bull calves. I band at birth so that’s not a need for me. I’m partial to the preifert model 91 headgate, whether used alone or on a chute. You can catch any size bovine with no adjustments necessary. But I can definitely see where a calf table would be handy.
 

TCRanch

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Are you cutting or banding? We used to band at birth but now band at appx 3 months when we work them. Not really an issue with a larger chute but there's always one that needs to be cut, in which case my crew simply drags him out of the chute & works him on the ground. I would say it also depends on the size of your herd.
 
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uplandnut

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My herd is small, 25 head. In the past I have always ear tagged and banded at birth but for some reason this year I was having trouble getting both testicles when I was tagging them. I know it's a few bucks for a small herd to have but I would imagine the investment would last me a long time as long as it was taken care of. Figured if I had one I could have a vet come out and cut them all at once in the fall. Seems like they bring more when they've been knife cut.
 

TCRanch

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uplandnut":2wva2sc9 said:
My herd is small, 25 head. In the past I have always ear tagged and banded at birth but for some reason this year I was having trouble getting both testicles when I was tagging them. I know it's a few bucks for a small herd to have but I would imagine the investment would last me a long time as long as it was taken care of. Figured if I had one I could have a vet come out and cut them all at once in the fall. Seems like they bring more when they've been knife cut.
How many bull calves do you average out of 25 head? Personally, I don't think the expense is justified unless you need it as a tax write off. Knife vs. banded at the sale barn has been debated & there may be some validity to it but I've also had more problems with bull calves that have been cut. Side note: banded or cut, they all get Covexin 8.
 

snoopdog

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I like them , and if you can get a bargain at an auction or something , I think it could be justified . But with a smaller herd , not unless you need the deduction or are doing it alone . They are VERY handy when doing a bunch .
 

bird dog

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They show up on Craigs list regularly if your looking for one. Maybe that should tell you something?? I really don't see the need to work the calves when they are new born or just a few weeks old. Much easier for me to run them at two to three months and run them through the regular chute.

If you have a calf chute, do you have to have a separate narrow alley to feed the calves in to it?
 

cowgirl8

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We have a full sized pearson chute and we work even week old calves in it. The floor bar can get in the way, but we castrate all our bull calves in it with absolutely no problems. We have them anywhere from 100 to 400 pounds, no problem squeezes them up good. They can even back into it and I can get to them from the head gate....actually, that's how I like doing it best.
 

Turkeybird

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Handy for 300 pounders but bigger ones I prefer a standing upright with the help of a good tail man
 

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