Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Spring Calves

IMG_2413On our farm it is that time again when the new calves start arriving.  I don’t think I will ever get tired of seeing the new babies each spring.  Each cow and calf has it’s own personality just like people.  There are the grumpy ones and the calm happy ones as well. IMG_2424 IMG_2432Some cows are good mothers and some just have problems bonding with their calf or don't have enough milk for the growing calf.  Thank goodness we don’t have many of those and they are usually sold before the next year because our calves must get their nutrition from their mothers.  We occasionally have a bottle calf but try to transplant any orphans onto a cow that looses a calf.  As much as we want all the calves to live and thrive there are some that just don’t make it. IMG_2420We put several areas of straw in the lot where the cows and calves are to make a nice bedding area for them.  When it is a little chilly just laying in the straw can keep the calves pretty warm.  That is their preferred place to bed down for a nap between nursing.  When the calves are sleeping the cows will go off to eat but know in an instant if someone or something is near her calf.  Usually the cow runs right over and puts herself between the “danger” and her calf.IMG_2406Our cows are mostly Limousine, Herford, or Limousine/Herford crossbred.  We have Limousine bulls and get a big variety of colors of calves.  Some are black, grey, all red or red white faced.  We have had black and white and all grey calves too.  Sometimes the calf looks like it’s mother and sometimes completely different than the cow. IMG_2434If a cow and calf are not bonding like they should they get put in the barn so there are not so many other cows and calves to distract them.  That usually seems to help the calf get to know it’s mother and for the cow to recognize and mother up her calf.  They need to bond and the cow needs to be protective of her calf in order for the calf to do well and be protected from coyotes or any other predators.IMG_2425 The best photo is this last one – I captured the calf just after it stopped nursing and was licking it’s lips.  So cute!

Until Later,
Lynn

4 comments:

Julie said...

Enjoyed your post!

QuiltinLibraryLady said...

I always love seeing all the little calves. Just so cute!! Not very good calf weather today.

tich said...

These are so cute.We are still waiting for our lambs to make an appearance.

Denise Russell said...

Great pictures! I felt like touching their coats (Not! The mother would have kicked the lights out of me!).

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