4 more ignorant cow questions :)

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by TamInAz, Dec 1, 2005.

  1. TamInAz

    TamInAz Well-Known Member

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    After my cute Jersey gives birth:
    1) When can I begin milking her?
    2) When can the baby be weaned?
    3) How long will she give milk after weaning if milked 2x/day?

    About Angus Heifer:
    When is a good, healthy age to breed her? (she is 8/9 mths old right now)

    TIA
    Tam
     
  2. Christina R.

    Christina R. Well-Known Member

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    Here are answers that I think are fairly close to accurate. You can start milking the day after she gives birth. You won't want to drink the milk for about three days, but she will be engorged and you will want to help her out. Corabelle gave birth at 1 pm. I had plans for that evening, so left her alone for what would have been the evening milking and began milking her the next am.


    I'm not too knowledgeable about weaning. We sold our first calf when she was about 4 months old. She was still nursing, but also eating grain and hay.

    Due to the weather here last year, we weren't able to get Corabelle rebred until Jan. 23rd (and then only by the grace of God with a short break in the weather) even though she calved way back on Aug. 14th. We milked her twice a day until the end of June then once a day for July and Aug (her next claf was due the end of OCT. Essentially you want to stop milking 2 months before the next calf is born. I was burned out on the twice a day milking, so decided to milk once a day for the last 2 months of milking. If you went to once a day milking for the month before you quit, I'm sure it would be fine. If you mean how long will she milk if you don't rebreed her, then that would be a different answer.

    Right now I decided to milk once a day until the calf leaves for a variety of reasons, then I'll have to do the 2x a day I'm sure.


    Hope this helps.
     

  3. Celtic Herritag

    Celtic Herritag Celtic Heritage Farms

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    I'm not a dairy person but I can answer your angus question. For beef cattle we aim to breed our heifers so that they'll calve at 2 years of age. Make sure that your heifer gets plenty of good nutrition during her growing period. She should be about 800 to 1000+ lbs. when she's ready to breed, if she's not up to that weight don't worry just reset the date and put her on a little more high quality feed. Be forewarned that she might try to go find a bull before she's ready so keep your fences well and keep an eye on any neighboring bulls with a record of jumping hedges. Also you'll want to find a bull with a good grade in "calving ease", because the heifers are bred at a young age they need an easy first calf. If they get to big of a calf it'll get stuck, pinch her nerves and potentialy paralyse her. So don't just breed to the first bull you come across, especialy for angus cattle as they are a smaller breed. Good luck with your hiefer.
     
  4. TamInAz

    TamInAz Well-Known Member

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    Thank You! I was thinking of breeding her quite a bit earlier than you mentioned...eeks like this summer. I'm planning on IA...I should be able to select "someone" who would be a good size match...shouldn't I?

    Blessings,
    Tam
     
  5. TamInAz

    TamInAz Well-Known Member

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    Thank you! This is exactly the info I was hoping for :)

    I Love this forum...you all are so helpful :)
     
  6. MaryF

    MaryF Well-Known Member

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    A good book to have is "Keeping A Family Cow"

    http://www.real-food.com/

    It will be your bible for the first year (at least!!)
    Good luck!
    Mary F.
     
  7. warrior

    warrior Well-Known Member

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    Definitely wait to let her have on her 2nd b-day or later. Also be sure to have her checked by a vet or knowledgeable breeder not just for health, weight and size. Have her checked for pelvic sufficiency. Some heifers just never develop the hips for calving and can never safely deliver a calf of any size, others will be limited to only small calves and some need to work their way up in size with each birth.
    The good thing with AI is that you SHOULD get a progeny report from the supplier of the semen that will tell you alots of the things you need to know about the sire and his offspring.
    The last heifer/calf trouble dad and I had was our last. Dad should have known better as we had doubts from the start (over 60 years of fooling with catle between us). He had high hopes for this one simmental/limosin cross heifer (she was somewhat of a pet) on her first calf but I thought she had bad hips and lacked the sufficiency, dad thought otherwise. She was bred to a limosin/beefmaster bull that had thrown calves for us in the 40-50 pound range with small heads (a good trait). This time he threw a 74 pounder (we weighed it) and when we got to her she had been down for at least eight hours. Rule of thumb if a heifer goes down with a calf you better get her on her feet NOW. In the delivery a cow that is down WILL pinch the nerves in the hip and WILL be paralyzed in the back end (9 times out of 10 permanently). To make matters worse the calf had hung up and was dead with one leg bent backwards when we arrived. After pulling the calf (tractor needed) she prolapsed. Long to short a BIG hole was dug that night by dad and I as we lost both cow and calf.
    First time heifers were always our biggest risks and we lost more first timers than any other. I would much rather get replacements that have one by their side or some already on the ground than a heifer. JMHO
     
  8. TamInAz

    TamInAz Well-Known Member

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    Thank you! This is a Beautiful girl and from some prize stock of my Dad's. He's tended to be the lucky sort w/a rather hands off approach and enough that if there was a poor outcome, it didn't matter...I'm much different.

    My plan is to IA her w/a High Quality Angus bull, appropriate to her size And I'm willing to be patient (she's so sweet :) ) and would love her to be my 2nd main breeder...the other being our little Jersey.

    I do so appreciate the advice given here!
     
  9. Christina R.

    Christina R. Well-Known Member

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    Tam,

    I use a great vet in our area. He was a dairy vet at one time, is one of the sweetest people you could ever want to know. He knows his stuff when it comes to cattle and can AI for you. His name is Dr. Rob Moore. His phone # is 522-0298. He's by Fourth St. in Flagstaff.
     
  10. TamInAz

    TamInAz Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Christina! I definitely prefer vet recommendations than learning who is good and who Isn't the hard way.