first calf heifers

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Anonymous

I am waiting for my third calf to come by way of another first calf heifer. It looks like the vet will have to come out and pull it AGAIN! He says I overconditioned them...which translates to me as: "Omak! You Overfed them!" I am planning next year's feed schedule and won't have any first calf heifers, but please! How did I do this? I feed first cutting alfalfa and add straw. For the most part, I just let them free feed, but think this is probably NOT what one should do. I give them salt licks, of course, lots of good water, and keep a molasses tub (Krystalix) in the pasture with them, since our area is selenium deficient. Also, this heifer and the last heifer did a lot of leaking, etc of body fluids but doesn't seem to have any real contractions. The last heifer that did this had a good calf, but small and no bad positioning.... I feel like such a DUNCE! Any thoughts? Omak

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Anonymous

All the heifers need is good quality hay until the last month or so before calving, then a little grain each day will give them a boost just prior to calving. As you have proven, you can't under feed to produce a small calf. They will sometimes have a disharge for as much as amonth or even two before calving, it isn't considered normal but it's nothing to be concerned about. If she hasn't even tried to strain then she may not be ready to calve quite yet. When we worry is after the have strained for half an hour or so and no progress has been made. I like heifers in about BCS 6.5 cows in about 6 when they calve. If you are unfamliar with BCS (Body Condition Score) let me know and I'll try to find the link that explaines it. The most important managment tool available to us is "The eye of the herdsman". The protein tub is unnecesarry expense. Get a good loose mineral supplement with additional selenium, whole lot cheaper and better for the cows.

dunmovin farms

> I am waiting for my third calf to
> come by way of another first calf
> heifer. It looks like the vet will
> have to come out and pull it
> AGAIN! He says I overconditioned
> them...which translates to me as:
> "Omak! You Overfed
> them!" I am planning next
> year's feed schedule and won't
> have any first calf heifers, but
> please! How did I do this? I feed
> first cutting alfalfa and add
> straw. For the most part, I just
> let them free feed, but think this
> is probably NOT what one should
> do. I give them salt licks, of
> course, lots of good water, and
> keep a molasses tub (Krystalix) in
> the pasture with them, since our
> area is selenium deficient. Also,
> this heifer and the last heifer
> did a lot of leaking, etc of body
> fluids but doesn't seem to have
> any real contractions. The last
> heifer that did this had a good
> calf, but small and no bad
> positioning.... I feel like such a
> DUNCE! Any thoughts? Omak
 
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A

Anonymous

Since I was the one that AI'd her, I know that she is due on April 25, and is five days overdue, but I guess that is not uncommon. Have seen a discharge off and on over the course of the last week or so. She is making bag, but not totally filled out, though her teats are pretty engorged looking. This heifer hasn't missed a meal since she figured out what I really did on this place.... LOL... I bumped her this morning and felt the calf kick back, so that was sort of a relief.... I didn't understand body score until after the vet told me the heifers were over-conditioned. I ASSUMED (you know what that means....) that as long as I could see the tail head, I was okay... the vet about choked when I told him that. He recovered and told me that if I had kept feeding until the tail head disappeared, the heifer would have been too fat to even eat! I won't claim proficiency on body score, but I do have a better idea of what it looks like than I did two months ago, that is for sure! Look at the first article on the home page... how is one to decipher that thing? I use a computer, but computer talk is like greek to me when I try to follow it... the same with nutrition of a cow. I can spell every word, I can even define most of them, but making sense of the words together, just is not computing in my brain. The reason I do not use the loose mineral is because of the mighty winds that blow through here... most of it would end up down the acreage someplace. Catch you later... Omak

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Anonymous

We used loose minerals in the mojave desert where a calm day is anything below 35 mph winds. The secret is in the feeder, open topped feeders won't get the job done. The attached site is for a pds file that deals with BCS, nutrition and reproduction. It's about half way down the page and is written by Dennis B. Herd, L. R. Sprott ans is titled Body Condition, Nutrition and Reproduction of Beef Cows

dunmovin farms

> Since I was the one that AI'd her,
> I know that she is due on April
> 25, and is five days overdue, but
> I guess that is not uncommon. Have
> seen a discharge off and on over
> the course of the last week or so.
> She is making bag, but not totally
> filled out, though her teats are
> pretty engorged looking. This
> heifer hasn't missed a meal since
> she figured out what I really did
> on this place.... LOL... I bumped
> her this morning and felt the calf
> kick back, so that was sort of a
> relief.... I didn't understand
> body score until after the vet
> told me the heifers were
> over-conditioned. I ASSUMED (you
> know what that means....) that as
> long as I could see the tail head,
> I was okay... the vet about choked
> when I told him that. He recovered
> and told me that if I had kept
> feeding until the tail head
> disappeared, the heifer would have
> been too fat to even eat! I won't
> claim proficiency on body score,
> but I do have a better idea of
> what it looks like than I did two
> months ago, that is for sure! Look
> at the first article on the home
> page... how is one to decipher
> that thing? I use a computer, but
> computer talk is like greek to me
> when I try to follow it... the
> same with nutrition of a cow. I
> can spell every word, I can even
> define most of them, but making
> sense of the words together, just
> is not computing in my brain. The
> reason I do not use the loose
> mineral is because of the mighty
> winds that blow through here...
> most of it would end up down the
> acreage someplace. Catch you
> later... Omak

BCS from A&M
 
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Anonymous

I didn't see an attachment, but I can tell by your words that you DO know winds... LOL... I think I found the Dennis Herd site once... isn't he out of the Canadian school? I have been impressed with their cattle educational articles...

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