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Breeding Season

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critterair2

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Looking for everybody's take on when their breeding season is, and why, or why theirs is different from someone elses.
 

Angus Cowman

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My breeding season begins around the 10th of Nov. and ends aaround the 25th of Jan
I like fall caving cows better and usually I hit a better market with the calves because in my area there isn't as many fall calvers as there is Spring and IMO if you are going to breed for spring you need to calve in Feb and March in this area to hit the higher August-Sept. market and most of our bad weather hits in Feb
 

cypressfarms

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I normally put the bulls in with the cows around January. Will put them in Dec 1st this year. I'm trying to move my calving to Nov-Jan instead of ending in March. I like the flexibility of selling early before everyone else's calves hit the market.
 

Frankie

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We're moving everything to Jan/Feb calving. Jan/Feb born bulls come off test in February and can be put in the March bull sale at the test station....if they qualify. So we don't have to keep them through the summer. They're the youngest bulls in the sale and sometimes take a hit, but it works out for us. We usually sell our heifers as bred, so it doesn't seem to make much difference when they are born. These are registered Angus. If we were in the commercial business, we might look at a different calving schedule.
 

redcowsrule33

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Late April and May calving here up north. I hate frozen ears and the babies look better on green grass instead of mud or snow. A lot of guys will have February calves around here but lose a few to hypothermia and lots of scours. No thanks.
 

jcarkie

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spring is feb 1st - aprils goal. 10th & fall is sept 1st - nov. 10th we have a few stragglers. i am working toward this.
 

msscamp

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critterair2":1a9bwxto said:
Looking for everybody's take on when their breeding season is, and why, or why theirs is different from someone elses.

Our breeding season was the first part of June through the first part of August. Calving season started around the 15th of March, usually. We have a very short growing season, and this allowed us to take advantage of the spring and summer grass, cut down on the amount of hay we had to feed over the winter, and the cold temperatures cut down on the spread of disease. There were also no flies, and the calves did not have to deal with the apathy, and reduced nursing that summer temperatures can cause. We scour-guarded, and vaccinated our girls so we didn't have many cases of scours. We also checked our girls regularly and, if the temps were below a certain level, they were moved under a shed either prior to calving, or immediately following calving to prevent frozen ears. If the temperature was extremely cold, the calf was brought into the house overnight. Because you live in Florida none of these reasons are going to apply to you, but it worked very well for us.
 

Aaron

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Breeding is June 16th (roughly) to August 7th and from November 5th (roughly) to December 25th (roughly). The herd is split in two to calve in the best times of the year (ie less work), April, May, August and September. We keep calves till they reach the yearling sweet spot of 800 lbs. and are ready to be sold at our local sales barn (4 miles away) which only has yearling sales on the 3rd weekend of April and 1st weekend of September, which saves us a pile in trucking, shrink and commission. :cowboy:
 

KNERSIE

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This is a very interesting topic, I am surprised it got so little interest.

For me its about managing drought and cow's condition for that critical time of breeding season and shortly thereafter. I calf in the winter (southern hemisphere) so my breeding season start 1 September for 65 days. Usually from September onwards my grazing is good till about December, this also gives the calves a decent chance to use the very short good grazing season. If I calf much later the calves will be too small, much earlier and droughts will have too big an effect on conception rates.

In the past I used to have 2 calving seasons, but with the growing herd and unreliable rainfall as well as management issues regarding vaccinations and AI considering other very time critical jobs on the farm I had to abandon the spring calving season.

Matching the best time for grazing with the breeding season also means I can use younger bulls (of my own breeding) before selling them shortly after my breeding season.
 

1982vett

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KNERSIE":22rhoed7 said:
This is a very interesting topic, I am surprised it got so little interest.

Apparently, lots of folks don't want to fess up. Calving season for me is what the bulls give me, year round. Why? Have calves to sell year round, have some to sell when the market is good and some to sell when the market is bad. Don't have to sell when the market is bad and can sell more when the market is good. Usually have some type of grazing year round, this year being an exception. Didn't get late summer rains to make fall grazing and winter pastures aren't doing much either. Upside is only half the herd has calves instead of all of them. Best thing for a situation like this is to have none. And last, to lazy to make a change. :p Strange how nature has a way of grouping them up. I would think that calves would be scattered out all thru the year more than what they are.
 

braunvieh

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Around here, most cattle producers are diversified and also farm. So, most everyone calves in Feb-May and cows go to summer grass in May when farming really picks up. In the fall, there is too much farm work going on to have many that fall calve.
 

KNERSIE

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Strange how nature has a way of grouping them up. I would think that calves would be scattered out all thru the year more than what they are.

Funny you mention that, I've seen the same thing when I used to calve year round. Also read a book on the subject where they said that the time frame when the most calves are born in a year round calving season would be the most natural time to calve in a defined season. Unfortunatley for my situation the breeding season and AI would not fit in with other farm activities so I had to move that forward a bit.

Even more interesting the "natural" calving season was the coldest month of the year bearing in mind our winters are very mild compared to yours.
 

Limomike

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We also have a defined breeding season. Its called "year-round". Have calves all year, but most of them are in the March- May timeframe. This year I pulled my bull off a few months ago, but will turn him back out in December sometime. Figured it was more cost effective to feed my bull than feed the heifers I am going to keep back.
 

msscamp

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1982vett":2uqaasix said:
KNERSIE":2uqaasix said:
This is a very interesting topic, I am surprised it got so little interest.

I would think that calves would be scattered out all thru the year more than what they are.

I can't speak for other areas, but around here summer time is too busy to be worrying about calving. We have irrigation, custom haying, our own hay, and various other things to tend to - no time to be calving out cattle. There is also the factor of calves scattered out over the entire year do not make a uniform group at the salebarn, and that will bring down the price for the entire group around here.
 

novatech

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I have no breeding season. I do however realize the importance of it. If for no other reason, raising registered cattle one must have a contemporary group in order to collect EPD's.
The reason I have no season has more to do with what I am willing to sacrifice. Not haveing the funds to go out and buy an exceptional bull I only AI. I am not willing to use some low class bull for cleanup. I would rather have my cattle out of sync than have to settle. In order to get my cattle settled timing is of the essence. Sometimes my time does not coordinate with theirs. It definitely makes for a slower process in producing my own heifers, but the results have been worth it.
I have finally been able to raise a bull which I consider of high enough quality to use for clean up. I sold him to a neighbor but kept breeding rights for an agreed number of my cows per year. So now maybe I can start working on a breeding season.
 

greatgerts

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We have a spring and fall breeding season. Spring calving is mid-March through the end of April. Fall calving is early September through mid/late October. I try and get my AI heifers bred about 3 weeks prior, so that if they didn't stick, they would get bred at the early part of the breeding season still. That gives the bull a lot of down time, but it also helps keep calving intervals close, and lets us catch open cows earlier.

I have had breeders tell me that they have 2 breeding seasons as well... 6 months the first, and 6 months the second!
 

angus9259

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In my commercial program I prefer aug/sept calving for weather concerns and calf marketability.

For seedstock I've had to go to calving Jan/Feb to have 15 mo bulls available for spring calving commercial herds. I liked fall calving so much I considered moving the seedstock to fall but then I'd have to store bulls an extra 6 months . . . that didn't sound fun.
 

grannysoo

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Maybe 2 or 3 times per year? I suppose mine is no different than anyone else that's been married as long as we have........ :lol2:
 

1982vett

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grannysoo":c6a2vks2 said:
Maybe 2 or 3 times per year? I suppose mine is no different than anyone else that's been married as long as we have........ :lol2:

Good thing the culling criteria is a bit different. :lol2: :lol2: :lol2:
 

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