new calf, first calf heifer...

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Fire Sweep Ranch

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Why does it seem in the stormy weather, cattle tend to want to calve? We had some wild weather late last night, even lost one of my walnut trees (I love my walnut trees! In fact, I love all of my trees!). I took this pic from the truck, on the way back from church, when I was checking the back side of our property (cattle just rotated off this section).


Anyway, this first calf heifer decided to calve this morning (our last heifer for the season). I went out to check her, and found her at the end of labor. She took her sweet time just sitting there, so I went over and dragged the calf up to her face so she could bond (first calf heifers can be dumb!).


She finally got up, after I made her! Daughter came down and gave the calf First Defence and Calf Guard orally.


He was a slow starter, so I left for church. Amazing, the sermon was about what we fear most, and giving it to God. At the time, my fear was the little bugger would not have nursed by the time I got home. He was 2 hours old when I left, and had stood but not really searched yet for the udder. I handed it over, said a prayer. God delivered! Yea, might seem silly to some, but this is what I found when I got home:


She is being a good first time dam. She has not left him, and we even opened a new section of grass for the group. She stayed right with him. We took water to her (she was the furthest from the water, and I did not see her leaving him to get a drink), left the buckets and picked up the calf to weigh him in the barn (on the 4 wheeler). Calf weighed 74 pounds, perfect for a first calf heifer. Headed back to the pasture and she was eating grass in the new section and ran from us! Stupid heifer! We had to go get her and bring her back so she would remember she had a new job!!! :lol:

All is good today. I might have a walnut tree to clean up, but we have a new calf doing nice a day after a nasty storm! Thinking about registering him "Heat of the Storm".... ;-)
BTW, yes she has a nose blab. She was a sucker when we turned her back in with the cows after breeding her. I did not want to sell her (she is an embryo, and has some desirable traits I like). So I bought a blab and put it in. She has not sucked since, and it is not impeding her ability to eat or mother her calf. So the problem is solved. Here is a pic of her before calving, about 30 days ago:



One more cow to calve, and we are done. These last two I used a bull we raised (Beef Maker x Pays To Dream). This heifer and the cow still due did not stick to AI and I did not want calves any later (June is too late really), and I liked the bull so I used him before selling him.
 

wbvs58

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Glad all is good FSR but I do question the practice of taking a calf away from a heifer up to the barn to process it. I would be leaving them alone to bond as much as possible and take the scales to them. Obviously you get away with it OK, what are your comments on this?

Ken
 
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Fire Sweep Ranch

Fire Sweep Ranch

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wbvs58":9otczjve said:
Glad all is good FSR but I do question the practice of taking a calf away from a heifer up to the barn to process it. I would be leaving them alone to bond as much as possible and take the scales to them. Obviously you get away with it OK, what are your comments on this?

Ken

Ken
The barn is not far, the heifer can see where we go. Weighing him took all of 3 minutes by the time we loaded him on the 4 wheeler, got him up to the barn, then loaded back on the bike and back to his dam. Most cows go with us when we take them to weigh them with the bike. I do not have a portable scale, just a big platform scale in the chute. If our place was bigger, and our cattle NOT halter broke, we would find a different way to weigh. Allowing them to bond is one reason I waited till this evening before weighing him.
A lot of the time, we just walk the cow and have the calf follow (one of the kids leads the cow, I follow behind and push the baby). We just happened to have the bike in the field (because we moved to a new acre section of grass and had to pull up the old section), so it was easiest to just pick him up and drive him.
I see your point, thank you.
 

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