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-   -   Brown Swiss Bottle Calf (http://www.homesteadingtoday.com/livestock-forums/cattle/471033-brown-swiss-bottle-calf.html)

rockinr 01/06/13 07:40 PM

Brown Swiss Bottle Calf
 
A dairy farmer friend of mine has a 2 day old brown swiss bull calf, that he said that he would sell to me for $150.00. Not sure if that is a good price for a brown swiss. I can buy Jersey bull calf for $50.00, of a Holstien for arouns $175.00. Advice please

tinknal 01/06/13 08:13 PM

I'm not up on prices but I would take a BS at that price over either the Jersey or Holstein.

Judy in IN 01/06/13 08:28 PM

That's a good price for a BS. I would jump on it!

I'll be looking for some bucket calves the first of February. I have to travel to Bowling Green, KY to find BS.

rockinr 01/09/13 11:58 AM

We got the Brown Swiss for even a better price. They allow us to keep animals on the farm for my kids 4-H projects. Sence my son is always out there helping with milking, bailing and everything elese. They gave my son the calf for free.
Just goes to show my son that good things will come with hard work.

Judy in IN 01/09/13 12:09 PM

Well, you can't beat a price like THAT! Congratulations!

I hear occasionally about people being given calves, but I haven't been that lucky yet.

I'll be traveling down to Bowling Green, KY when we get back from vacation. I'm just hoping they have BS calves the day I am there. It's a gamble.

Small Farm Life 01/09/13 12:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rockinr (Post 6368931)
A dairy farmer friend of mine has a 2 day old brown swiss bull calf, that he said that he would sell to me for $150.00. Not sure if that is a good price for a brown swiss. I can buy Jersey bull calf for $50.00, of a Holstien for arouns $175.00. Advice please

We had swiss. Our favorite breed. As for the price that is a good price. Ask info at local auction markets

topside1 01/09/13 01:07 PM

Hard work does pay off, great ending. Nice to know kind people still exist...Topside

kickinbull 01/09/13 01:39 PM

Calves
 
When I was a kid, neighbor had a dairy. He gave my brother and myself 2 bulls. We raised them up for I think about 16 months as steers. Dad bought the feed. We sold them at market and Dad got half for feed. Next year we bought calves.

kickinbull 01/09/13 01:44 PM

Brown Swiss calves
 
We have a small dairy of mixed breed cows. Every new bull is usually a different breed. We also do some AI. In the last few years we have used BS in the rotation twice plus some in AI. There is one thing about them, ask someone who raises them, if they ever, ever suck the momma, they will die before you can get them to take a bottle. Weird, but it has been true for us.

Judy in IN 01/09/13 01:57 PM

The last couple of times I went to BG, I saw some beautiful BS bull calves in the pens. BUT, they all had wet, red cords on them. Shoot! Couldn't they let the little boys stay a few days on the farm? Dang!

I always thought they would make a gorgeous oxen team.

kickinbull 01/09/13 02:26 PM

Judy in IN
 
I hate to hear about the calves going to market so early. Do you go to the Mammoth Cave Dairy Auction?

Judy in IN 01/09/13 07:33 PM

That's the ONE!

I thought that there was a law on the books that calves couldn't be sold younger than 3 days, but evidently it's my imagination, 'cause I've seen a lot of them.

francismilker 01/09/13 10:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kickinbull (Post 6375031)
We have a small dairy of mixed breed cows. Every new bull is usually a different breed. We also do some AI. In the last few years we have used BS in the rotation twice plus some in AI. There is one thing about them, ask someone who raises them, if they ever, ever suck the momma, they will die before you can get them to take a bottle. Weird, but it has been true for us.

I love brown swiss cows. However, a few years back I got some BS bull calves and had about the same luck you had raising them. I didn't lose any of them but had a harder time than I'd ever had getting a calf to take a bottle. I tried bottle, bucket, and finally had to tube them for a few feedings and see them get near death before training them to suck the bottle.

What ended up working for me with all of them was taking a severely worn out nipple and making a hole big enough in it to basically pour down the calf. After a few days they started to work their mouth a bit and slowly make a sucking action as it poured down. I'd guess they were a month old before I could have a normal routine of dropping a bottle in a feeder and letting them eat.

I've raised hundreds of bottle calves over the years and still like the BS breed. They were just my hardest ever to raise.

There may be something to what you say about letting them suck mama. This particular dairyman let the calves run with mama until they were three days old. He didn't pull the calves until mama's milk was getting put in the bulk tank and not going in the fresh cow bucket. Up until that time, they were kept in the maternity ward and milked out 2X a day with a portable bucket milker setup. Not sure why he done it, but it worked for him. He kept all his heifers and didn't seem to have any trouble keeping them alive.


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