Ashes, ashes we all fall down

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by Christiaan, Mar 7, 2005.

  1. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    I burned the trash yesterday, mostly paper and a few branches. Before the fire was out these two steers, 1/2 brothers Nigel (almost 2) and Orlando (almost 1) were licking up the ashes. No matter how much mineral supplement we make available, we can't replicate nature. There is something here they really wanted.


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    Nigel finishing up the Xmas tree, even as it is still smoldering.
     
  2. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

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    What kinds of cattle are those?! They look wild and wooly! :)

    (BTW I love the names!) :haha:

    I should have taken a pic the day my calves were out licking the road salt off the Buick ... :rolleyes:
     

  3. tooltime

    tooltime Border Ruffian

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    I think they are Scottish Highlands.

    There are lots of trace minerals in wood ash, especially Calcium, Potassium and Magnesium. I've heard of people feeding wood ash to goats as a mineral supplement. Someone else know?
     
  4. BDB

    BDB BDB

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    yup there highlands have some myself real nice cows
     
  5. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

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    Willow, I hope you chased them away from it :). That stuff kills birds, not sure what it does to other animals. But I doubt it was enough to bother anyways. Road salt sucks! Too bad NY doesn't do what VT does, they dont use road salt there, and their roads aren't all that bad, gotta love road salt when it melts the snow, 20 degrees later its ice.

    But you gotta love cows, they go after things that you shake your head at, like chewing on a feeder, or eating their bedding. Im glad the feeder is made out of material that they can chew off, thats why I like wooden feeders. They dont bother those, atleast not ours.

    You sure that steer wasn't trying to roast some marshmellows? Can see something white there, ehhh maybe not, ;).


    Jeff
     
  6. lilsassafrass

    lilsassafrass Well-Known Member

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    Ohh dear .... :)

    Thats jsut why I dont burn brush piles in the pastures any more , years ago , i had an old cow singe her forelock pretty baddly .. she looked very pathetic for months till it grew back ... never figured out how she managed it with out burning her nose ... accept she must have been pushing around a smoldering log with her head .. she was too funny to look at most of the summer ..
    cows do do some odd things ...

    Paula
    Hyde Park Farm
     
  7. Matt NY

    Matt NY Well-Known Member

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    Kills birds? What kind of birds? It used to be a common practice to give ashes to chickens.
     
  8. opus

    opus Well-Known Member

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    Sorry but I see no need for chasing them away. We have never had an issue with cattle foraging slash piles.

    If they burn themselves, look at it as a lesson...or supper. Bovines are dumb enough, no need to keep the dumbest ones alive
     
  9. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

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    Clean (no metal, such as fence staples, or treated lumber) ashes and bits of charcoal has been a livestock mineral supply probably for as long as mankind has kept them in captivity. Fine ashes were put in the chicken house (or out of the weather) for the poultry to take a dust bath for mites, etc. They were routinely fed as a supplement to hogs. It was thought they mixed with the digestive fluids to make a mild lye which killed worms and other internal parasites. I once had a bull who couldn't wait for the ashes from a brushpile to cool down so he would roll in them like a horse. Rather amusing to watch. He would be gray until the next rain.

    I know of nothing harmful in clean wood ashes to any livestock and have never heard of them killing birds. Documentation please.

    Depraived appetite, such as eating manure, dirt, tree bark, wood or bones is often a sign of a mineral deficiency. However, some, like a horse chewing on stall boards, can be bordom also. I have gone out of my way to provide clean water for my cattle. I have seen them walk through a spring run, past a large pond to drink out of a muddy puddle which has both been dumped and urinated in. Something in it they like.

    On that, I add a bit of vinegar to my turkey water bowl. Some of the ducks swim across the pond, up the spring run and then come through the yard to drink out of it.
     
  10. suswaski

    suswaski Member

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    I think the comment about "that stuff kills animals" was in response to this:

    I should have taken a pic the day my calves were out licking the road salt off the Buick


    Sorry, I don't know how to do quotes, but read the threads above and see if you don't agree..


    Susie
     
  11. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    They are Highlland Cattle, aka Scottish Highland. World's greatest breed!
     
  12. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    These Highlands seem to be real partial to evergreen trees. They have eaten every branch within reach. Their favorite delicacy is stinging nettles. They practically run me over when I bring them a barrow load.
    Nigel and Orlando are half brothers. Their mother is Beth, she was named before I got her. The boys are her number two and three, respectively, and she had one boy before I got her. I keep hoping for a little girl, we'll know in June.
     
  13. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

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    Scotish Highlands has a reputation for being browsers (like deer) as much as grazers (like most other domestic livestock). They can thrive in woodslots where other cattle would go hungry - so the story goes.
     
  14. opus

    opus Well-Known Member

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    Watch out for pine needle abortion!
     
  15. NRS Farm

    NRS Farm Well-Known Member

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    I read an article a few years back on cattle drinking "dirty" water verses "clean" water. As I recall the author thought the cattle were seeking out a bacteria or flora or something similar which benefits the cow somehow, just don't recall exactly what the benefit is. As I recall it is a health benefit though, similar to antibiotics.
     
  16. kesoaps

    kesoaps Well-Known Member

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    What great pics! We've got some highlands down the road, I just love watching them. Do the horns ever get you?

    There's an old burning barrel at the barn where I kept my horse, and all the horses just love the ashes in it! Whenever they're turned out in the mornings, they have to stop and grab a mouthful on their way to the pasture.