It must be weaning time..

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spinandslide

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Because I woke up to bawling this morning..;)

Weaned the oldest calf yesterday, with no issues..momma and calf did not even aknowledge each other..apparently last night, it sunk in. Calf's 4 months old, eating fine on her own, heat and nursing was taking alot out of the cow, so I opted for alittle earlier weaning then normal..I am keeping the calf..even though she's red. ;)
spinandslide-albums-other+photos-picture102008-babytee.JPG


Her mother is the bottle calf I raised..who almost died on me due to bad scours and coccydilious. She's done good, based on this calf.
 

hillbillycwo

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Nice looking calf. I wean mine at six months and so far they seem to grow well and it helps the cows get condition back going into the winters. Maybe doing something wron gbut it seems to be working.
 
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I swear by those quiet wean nose flaps. Makes life bearable during the first week or so they would normally be bawling. Some of the smart weaners will figure out how to nurse still, but there ways to fix that too
 
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spinandslide

spinandslide

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Ive never tried the noseflaps..may have to next year. Ive never had big problems weaning..heck, last year, the cow weaned him herself..

I wouldve kept her on longer, but momma was getting alittle drawn down due to the heat and strain of nursing..so I opted for early weaning to help momma come back.
 

dun

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We fencline wean and the calves rarely make any noise. Late on the second day the cows will start calling some because of full udders. By late on the third day the cows have given up and we move them to another pasture further from the calves where they;ll stay unitl we have to start feeding hay or calving season starts.
 
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spinandslide

spinandslide

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dun":xt28iueg said:
We fencline wean and the calves rarely make any noise. Late on the second day the cows will start calling some because of full udders. By late on the third day the cows have given up and we move them to another pasture further from the calves where they;ll stay unitl we have to start feeding hay or calving season starts.

I fencelined these two..I think the cow's udder is making her call..and thus calf is calling back..it looked full this morning. Didnt seem to make her not want her feed though..can't be that bad.

they got pretty loud yesterday afternoon, even got the neighbor's cows going too..:(
 

Amo

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I have a friend that fence lines. Works slick. I use the nose flaps. Its a pain and time consuming, but at least I can dertermine when I want to consume some time. Id rather that than have calves break out at 6 am when I have a 9 am appointment or something.

Im just not set up handy enought with fresh grass on both sides to do the fence line deal...wish I did!
 

kenny thomas

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Never have to hear a calf bawl when I wean. But then the lot is over 3 miles from the house. :lol2:
I like the ideas of fenceline weaning and like the nose flaps but have not had good luck keeping them in.
 

dieselbeef

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fenceline weaning dont work for beans fer me...they push thru..find a spot on the boards or the fenceline..ive got 10 strands of wire..tite tite tite wire..they still git thru...i dont mind the bawlin..its the still gittin on em after i seperate em i hate...got no water on the other pasture but i will once i run one more fenceline...
 
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spinandslide

spinandslide

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this is our first time fenceline weaning..cattle at least..that is normally how I do our horses.

the fenceline seperating momma and calf is tight no climb wire with a pipe toprail..the cattle respect this fence very well...Im not sure if I would do it with anything but a "solid" type fence.

as I said, last year, calf weaned himself..physically, mentally he didnt..as when I had to move him home from the pasture where his momma was, he bawled...and the year before, we did the "seperate and haul" where momma went off property for about a month and the calf stayed here.

Each way worked..

Feed seems to help distract these two..and there was less noise last night..:)
 

dun

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dieselbeef":2ak7rkwq said:
fenceline weaning dont work for beans fer me...they push thru..find a spot on the boards or the fenceline..ive got 10 strands of wire..tite tite tite wire..they still git thru...i dont mind the bawlin..its the still gittin on em after i seperate em i hate...got no water on the other pasture but i will once i run one more fenceline...
We use a single strand of HOTwire about 28-32 inches off the ground. Never have had a calf go through it.
 

hillbillycwo

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Dun wish I had your luck. Mine go through 4 strands of hot hot hot hitensile. It pushes 5.5 KV and those calves still get through. Wean mine in the old holding pen off the farm from their mommas at 5-7 months and after 3-4 days that only bawl for their feed when the hay rack is empty. If I keep it full you rarely hear a peep from them. Wish I could fenceline wean I think it is a good way to go.
 

dun

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hillbillycwo":2plkbgz6 said:
Dun wish I had your luck. Mine go through 4 strands of hot hot hot hitensile. It pushes 5.5 KV and those calves still get through. Wean mine in the old holding pen off the farm from their mommas at 5-7 months and after 3-4 days that only bawl for their feed when the hay rack is empty. If I keep it full you rarely hear a peep from them. Wish I could fenceline wean I think it is a good way to go.
Our calves are trained to hotwire fomr birth so they know all about it. We split a pasture that they are used to in half and give the cows one side and the calves the side wirth the working facilitys. The hot wire we use for weaning pushes arounf 7k volts through 9 conductor poly wire.
 

dun

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From Drovers:

Weaning can be a very stressful event in the life of a calf. It is not uncommon for calves to be weaned abruptly, separating the calf from the cow and immediately moving the calf to some new environment away from its dam. There are many potential sources of stress during the time surrounding weaning that may include any of the following: loading and unloading from trailers, transport, crowding, restraint, commingling with unfamiliar animals, withholding of feed and water. Stress during weaning makes calves more susceptible to respiratory infections such as bovine respiratory disease, causing a high level of mortality and morbidity in feeder calves. It has been estimated that the beef industry may lose over one billion dollars every year from this disease.

There are more gradual ways of weaning that can potentially reduce the stress experienced by the calf. Less stress should help keep the calf healthier prior to entering a backgrounding program. The attachment between a cow and its calf is strong, as it is with most mothers and their babies. So breaking that attachment suddenly can be quite unsettling for the calf. “Low-stress” weaning methods work by breaking down the weaning process into two steps. The first step is preventing the calf from suckling while still allowing it some contact with the cow and then after a period of time (usually anywhere from 4 to 10 days) the calf and cow are separately completely. Two such methods are fence-line weaning and nose-clip weaning. In fence-line weaning, calves are physically separated from their dams and placed in an adjacent paddock so that they can still be comforted by seeing and hearing the cow but they cannot suckle. With nose-clip weaning an antisuckling nose-clip is placed on the calf. This clip has small points that irritate the cow when the calf attempts to suckle, causing the cow to walk away and refusing to nurse. Because the nose-clip hangs in front of the calves nose it also acts to some extent as a physical barrier to prevent suckling, but does not interfere with the calf being able to graze. Nose-clip weaning allows the calf to maintain physical contact with its mother while getting accustomed to not being nursed.

Implementation of these low-stress weaning methods depends on what resources are available. Fence-line weaned calves will spend a lot of time in the first few days pacing along the fence looking for a way back to their dam. Because of this, fences need to be in good shape to prevent calves from crossing back through. In order to nose-clip wean, the nose-clips must be purchased (around $3 each) and the calves need to be brought to a working facility twice for nose-clips to be put in and later to be removed (although this may be combined with other management activities and not be extra work). There are a few circumstances to note on the use of nose-clips. Because most of the nose-clips out on the market are made of a molded plastic there will often be a coarse ridge along the portion that will be on the inside of the calf’s nose. Smoothing down this ridge should help reduce the degree of nasal irritation. Also, consider what type of waterer and mineral feeders will be used by the calf. If the calf has to push down a ball in the waterer or lift up a lid on a mineral feeder the calf might stop drinking or eating mineral because its nose has become irritated or sore from the nose-clip. Also, it is possible for the nose-clip to be pulled off altogether by getting hung up on something in the pasture and the weaning process will no longer be “low-stress” when the calf is separated from the cow.

Besides the most immediate concern of a newly weaned calf becoming sick, the question of how does weaning method impact animal performance during the backgrounding period is currently being evaluated in a series of studies at Mississippi State University. Past research has tended to favor fence-line weaning over nose-clip weaning or showed no differences at all in backgrounding performance. However, there are several different types of nose-clips available for purchase. Therefore in addition to comparing fence-line weaning to nose-clip weaning, the Mississippi State study will compare different types of nose-clips including a “one-size fits all” variety along with nose-clips that are adjustable enabling them to fit both larger and smaller noses. For more information on stocker cattle management, contact an office of the Mississippi State University Extension Service.

Source: Holly T. Boland – Assistant Research/Extension Professor, MAFES Prairie Research Unit
 
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spinandslide

spinandslide

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good article dun, thank you for posting.

All is pretty quiet now on my place..calf never lost her appepitite..which was good...low stress, I like it..
 

dieselbeef

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i used an aluminum nose ring with spikes on it...easier than i thought...slowed her down but i think the calf figured it out and just started turning her head sideways

i hate cattle...
 

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