Jason's first offspring

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by dosthouhavemilk, Jul 3, 2005.

  1. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,174
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    Well, some cows you can't let them see you and some need you there.
    We brought Frida in for milking Tuesday night. This serves three purposes. It allows us to see what shape her udder is in, it gets her used to coming back in to be milked and it gets her separated from the heifer/dry cow herd.
    Tuesday night we milked her and then let her go before the rest of the herd were let out. This gives her an opportunity to go to her calf without the entire herd following her.
    So I followed her. I watched from afar. She didn't get very far past the heifer/dry cow herd and then she just stopped. It was getting dark and I thought maybe, just maybe, she had her calf next to her and I simply couldn't see it in the tall grass. So I went up to do one last check before trudging home dejected.
    She saw me, and took off away from the heifer/dry cow herd in the direction I figured her calf was in. She got part way, looked back and bellowed. I thought she was bellowing at the heifers. Since she was moving fairly quickly I decided to go ahead and follow her. She got to the Thicket (keep in mind the sun has set by now and it is getting dark out) and then looked back and bellowed again, but this time I knew it was at me. We went through the Thicket and up onto Spy Hill. She went straight to her calf and then called to me. Clear out at the very end of the farm and just inside a wildlife area. 1/2 mile from the barn. One thing we have started doing in recent years is to take along a calf halter when going out after the calves. With the purebred Jerseys they weren't very strong or heavy and you ended putting a rope on mama or carrying the calf. Carrying bull calves aways ended with you having been peed on.
    These crossbreeds are up and running just about as soon as they hit the ground. The halter makes it simpler if mama takes off.
    Well, this two day old calf was *not* interested in having halter put on her. She was struggling and I actually fell on her at one point.
    We started heading back to the barn and she did take off with me by her side. She thought I was mama walking beside her. Unfortunately, Frida was still back looking for her calf because she had not seen me take her. Luckily she figured it out and joined us. It is so much easier to move a calf if they can walk with their mother. So we hiked the 1/2 mile back to the barn in the dark.
    The new calf...a HEIFER! ...is now in her new pen and dad fed her first bottle that evening. It was quite a chore it sounds like. She is in a smaller pen that isn't fastened to anything and she was baning around in it. Once she figured out that the bottle had milk she was a dream to feed.
    Our last heifer calf turned four months old on the first. It is nice to have a heifer calf again. This makes two out of two for Frida. She had Hermaine last August. Now this one. Jason's first offspring is a heifer calf.

    [​IMG]
    Frida-taken the night after she calved. She is 3/4 Jersey, 1/4 Norwegian Red (sire was half and half).
    [​IMG]
    Jason-taken when he was nine months old. He settled Frida when he was nine months and 23 days old. 3/4 Jersey, 1/4 Norwegian Red (dam was half and half, sire was Jace 7J535).
    [​IMG]
    The newest addition to our herd. She has not told us her name yet. It may be a bit.



    His second calf arrived last Wednesday, but we did not find it until yesterday. By then, the bull calf was dead. First time mom. 25 month old heifer, she didn't feed it and we lost it. Hadn't lost a calf since August and December of 2003.
     
  2. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

    Messages:
    14,609
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Dysfunction Junction
    What a nice-looking calf that is, Roseanna! And it sounds like Jason is going to be a fine herd bull ...

    Funny that the calf is much lighter in color than either of her parents!

    On the farm where I work, a Holstein/Jersey-cross cow calved down at the dry cow barn last week. The farmer I work for assumes she had twins, because he found two small calves and couldn't find another cow who appears to have calved.

    Now, the cow is smaller than most Holsteins and has a Jersey face, but she's black with a little white on her, and she was bred to a Holstein bull.

    The smaller heifer calf looks like a purebred Jersey.

    The bigger bull calf looks pure Holstein, white with black markings!

    It's the darndest thing I've ever seen.

    I sure hope he's right that she twinned ... what a shame it would be to sell the little heifer as a freemartin if she really wasn't! :eek:
     

  3. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,174
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    With their higher percentage of Jersey, most calves born to our crosses should come out a fawn variation at birth but change color as they mature. This heifer should turn black as she ages, just like her older half sister Hermaine did.
    Frida(black) and Freya(red brindle) were both a reddish fawn color at birth. They were twins and ended up two very dinstinct colors.
    When S.C. (our first 3/4 Jersey, 1/4 N.R. heifer) was born we had an AI date of Acorn as well, and thought she was out of Alf. But then the others started coming along a month later and as they aged we couldn't convince ourselves of it anymore and we knew she was El Tigre's daughter. She is now black like Frida with a galaxy on her side.

    Bummer on the heifer/bull twins. But fascinating about the very different colorations on them.
     
  4. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

    Messages:
    14,609
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Dysfunction Junction
    I was wondering whether the little one's color would change as she gets older!

    Tell me, Roseanna, what advantages do you find in using Norwegian Reds in your breeding program? I don't know much about the breed, so I'm curious!

    Libby-Belle, my half-Jersey heifer, has been bred to the neighbor's Angus bull. I have heard that is a nice cross for Jersey heifers due to the ease of calving. Since L-B is also part Guernsey and Belted, it's anyone's guess what her calf will look like! (Probably black, eh?!)
     
  5. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,174
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    The biggest reason dad wanted the N.R. in the herd was for vigor. Our purebreds were coming out weak even though our cows are very healthy. It was the linebreeding in the available Jersey studs that was causing the weaknesses to come through.
    The second nice thing was they offered a lower SCC and supposedly more resistance to mastitis. Third, they are good in pasture based systems.
    It helped that dad liked the looks of Holstein/N.R.s he saw shown at the fair one year. ;)

    One nice thing that we have found after bringing them into the milking herd is that their calves grow well and are bigger when we sell the bull calves. They also milk very well, with a higher Protein than our Jerseys. Our 3/4 Jerseys, 1/4 N.R.s are averaging 60 pounds as first fresheners. A bit of this has to do with their sire's dam, Shenekwa. Her family has a very good test, and that was why we kept El Tigre for breeding. But the two that are not out of him, Sidsel and Siv, also are showing these attributes.
    Classification scores aren't too shabby either for the first calf heifers we have in; 2-76, 1-78, 2-79, 2-80, 2-81, 1-83- all on first calf heifers, most having milked since December. They do need work on their rear udder height and the classifier mentioned they were more rounded, but that is the beefy component in the breed showing through. Frida is the one that scored 78 and that was a different classifier. She's now on her second lactation. her twin, Freya is due in August with her second calf and she had one of the 76 scores.
    I have milking information, breeding, and all that here; Beautiful Bovines

    Unfortuantely, no one wanted to buy Jason for breeding so he went through the auction when he was 15 months old. He was as leadable with a halter as the day he joined the cows a 7 months old. A big puppy dog.


    Aparently not all Angus have ease of calving, but Sandy settled to our Angus clean-up bull, Junior, and calved at 22 months with a dead bull calf. She had him fine he just didn't make it. All the other first calf heifers that settled to him, and the older cows did fine.
    She should be fine.

    Here is a picture of Spitfire, the JerAngus we left with her 13 year old dam, Cherry. We sold her at seven months old when all these crossbred heifers were being born. Her dam, Cherry (in the picture) died when she was our months old. You can guess where her name came from. :D
    [​IMG]
    Our JerAnguses tended to come out a chocolate color. Spitfire turned black with age.
     
  6. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,174
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    I just realized something. Cherry is Frida's granddam. :)
     
  7. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,174
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    Jason has produced three offspring. Argos (the heifer pictured in the original post), a bull calf that showed up dead at three days old and the most recent addition born 7/12/05.
    Juness (the dam) is 3/4 Jersey, 1/4 Norwegian Red. This was her first calf and we didn't see the calf until the 14th when she brought it up to the herd.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    In the last picture the dark Jersey to her left is Gadget, the one who lost the bull calf. Though we believe another cow, due to calve on the 24th, may have stolen him.
    The calf is a heifer and her name wtih start with a "B" and be a greek name. We are using names from the "Jason and the Argonauts" if at all possible but there were no B names. Whenever we run herd bulls their daughters are named in alphabetical order with a theme.
     
  8. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

    Messages:
    14,609
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Dysfunction Junction
    That's a neat idea for naming, Roseanne!

    I once talked to a dog breeder who would use "theme" names for each litter. For instance, one was a "coffee" theme, with pups named Espresso, Cafe Au Lait, etc. Said it made it real easy for her to remember later on which litter a particular pup came from ...

    That's a nice-looking calf. I'm not real up on what Norwegian Reds look like, but I'm guessing it maybe looks more NR than Jersey? It looks pretty stocky, while in my experience Jerseys tend to be spindly li things!
     
  9. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,174
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    The N.R.s have a touch of beef back there in there breeding, I believe, and so the calves come out a bit stockier and grow much more quickly than our purebred Jerseys. We have a 12 month old who is huge.
    The ones out of our 3/4 Jersey and Jason, have not had the fawn coloration thus far. Gadget's (purebred Jersey) did look like a fawn colored Jersey from what was left when I saw it (the vultutes made quick work of it). It has been interesting to see what colors have come out. Normally we didn't see any stripes on the animals til they were around breeding age. Juness' heifer (named Belaphron) already has some dark stripes on her!
    We are only three into it and there are quite a few more left to be born, so it will be interesting to see what the colors do. Juness, herself is the only with her exact coloration out of the 12 daughters. She has a mulberry tint to her.