The Continuing Bovine Chronicles
I know we have many new folks on the newsletter list who are not familiar with the ongoing saga of my adventures with cattle. You can visit the Complete Home Services website newsletter archives for the previous stories if you wish.
My girls are doing great! They are fat and sassy on the lush spring pastures. I use an intensive rotational grazing scheme that has me moving the cows to new pasture every day. They get a little irritated when they don’t get moved on time. Every evening, on my way home from work, I stop and move the girls to a new paddock. They start mooing when I close the door on the truck. When I see them, they are all lined up in a row at the wire waiting, somewhat patiently, to be moved. There is no driving or yelling involved with my girls. Simply roll back a section of wire and they run over and start gulping down the groceries.
As many of you remember, Bella, one of my best, abandoned her first calf, little Norman. Well, she had her 3rd calf this spring and is a champion mom. Her calves are full bodied and thick. She’s only ever given us males but that has more to do with our herd sire, Valentino, ze lover. He has previously only ever thrown males except for this year when we got our first female out of him. He is quite the beast! A very “bully” bull.
We have a couple of females that are due for their first breeding this year. The star attraction in that bunch is Magnolia or Maggie for short. She is the daughter of Blackie, one of our oldest girls. She used to be at the top of the pecking order but has been supplanted by her own daughters. She has only dropped one male and all the rest females, everyone a keeper. Maggie was a large calf at birth. She is so thick! Not a gap on her. I have high hopes for her. She is very sweet and like to have her head scratched sometimes. My cattle are all moderately framed. I don’t care for the huge behemoths that are standard fare in the industry today. I can grow more pounds per acre with my smaller cattle anyway. Easier to handle as well.
The calf crop was pretty good this year. They are coming along just fine. They do get into trouble with me though. Their curiosity gets the better of them… and me. They are always slipping under the temporary wire into the adjacent paddock. Since the fence pops them on the way under, they are afraid to come back through. Momma then stands there calling after them instead of eating and the herd gets a little antsy with all of the commotion. By the time I arrive to rotate everyone the little calf is famished for mother’s milk, which they imbibe greedily. Kids.