Monday, September 22, 2014

Fall calving.



It's hard to believe, but the fall cows at the ranch started calving early last week, and this weekend was the first time I had a chance to go out and take pictures of them.

Note that sentence did not say the first time I've been out to see the calves....last Wednesday, after Round Up there was one cow who decided that she did not care to be a mother to her calf, so we had to gather her and the calf and take them to the calving barn so we could milk her out and let her calf nurse.  My hands were full (I was the one holding the calf on my lap while Ty navigated the four wheeler), so no pictures. 



 
Right now, all of the calves being born are either ET calves (Meadow Acres Angus embryos that were put into Double M recip cows last winter) or AI calves that are sired by bulls out of the Genex Progeny Test.  It's exciting to see the progressive genetics in the calves.

Even though in the fall Clint calves mature cows (in the spring he calves the heifers and young cows) and they don't need as much help, we still check the cows fairly often throughout the day to make sure there aren't any problems.  This weekend Clint had 3 sets of twins, and Mike had a fourth set over at his place.  Two out of the four cows claimed their twins and are doing ok now, but a beef cow usually only has enough milk to raise one calf well so we're hoping the Jersey cow decides to calve soon.  :)  Then we'll put the extra twins on her, since she'll have more than enough milk for her calf plus 2 more.

And secretly I'm hoping we don't have a fall calving season like we did in 2012 where we had over 30 sets (!!!) of twins out of 250 cows.  ;)  Twins are A LOT of work!

Clint always says that the first and last weeks of the calving season are the hardest, and again I find his words to be true. But the extra efforts are worth it when you see healthy calves frolicing out in the fields.  :)

 
Are you fall calving where you live?

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