The Calving Season is in Full Swing

With this period being one of the two major times for calves to ‘drop’, my wife and I joined Hugh Leigh and Gigi on Saturday to go check out the new calves.  Only when we went over to their house and I saw HL and Gigi hooking up the cow trailer did I realize there was more to do than just look and put out feed. Time to cowboy!

I remembered HL saying awhile ago that one new calf wasn’t doing so well and that he was planning to bring the calf and his momma back to the horse pasture across from their house.  I simply figured that he had already done that so it wasn’t on my radar.  As it turns out, it was the first thing we attended to when we got over to “Papaws” (Gigi’s name for Deer Camp when it came to the cows pastured there).  While I have helped do this in the past, I was a little rusty but HL is a good supervisor, with the help of his ass’t supervisor – Gigi, so things went smoothly.  Pat was right in there, too, but she hung back a little mainly because she could.

We lured as many cows as needed to be brought in to the feeding / loading pen so the mamma and calf came in as well.  Then we weeded out the cows and calves until we only had the mamma and calf in the pen, well there was one last cow that was more intent on getting as many crumbs off the ground as possible that she wasn’t paying us any mind.  The trailer is set up with  3 separate areas, if needed, to load cattle.  This time we only needed two with one for the mamma and one for the calf.  We loaded the mamma in first with me doing the ‘sorting’ / herding.  I used my sorter stick like an extension of my arm to direct the cow towards the loading gates and had her finally up in the trailer and was closing the gate when she finally balked and one of her hoofs was perfectly placed at the bottom of the gate so prodding her wasn’t doing it.  Fortunately, HL said to poke her in the stomach and that got her going again.  And we closed the gate.

The calf was much easier as Gigi basically guided her by hand into the trailer.

Now it was time to go look at calves.

It has been a very good year with 12 calves dropped so far this season.  Of the 4 cows I own, 2 have dropped calves.  Both are doing quite well. Here is Red Horn ( a bit of a misnomer as the horn is not red; it is one of 2 red cows but mine has horns)

Red Horn's Calf

and Silver Paint with her calf.

Paint's calf

Both calves are bull calves and will have to be sold as you can only have one bull per pasture unless you are trying to raise only bulls.

Then we took the pair in the trailer to HL’s horse pasture and in a separate area for just this situation we unloaded momma and calf.  The fun part is that the chickens they have for eggs are located in this space as well so there was a flurry of feathers flying when the cows first arrived.  Then things got back to ‘normal’.


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