Milking Angus'

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by Celtic_Knot, Dec 27, 2005.

  1. Celtic_Knot

    Celtic_Knot Celtic Heritage Farms

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    Our hiefer will be calving this spring and I was thinking that it might be good to get a bit of milk out of her just for the experience and to have something othr than the store stuff that really isn't butter. I know it won't be alot of milk or consistent but I don't particularly want to milk everyday and have to throw milk out that we can't consume and I want to keep the calf on her. She's gentle enough for it(though that might change with her calve) she's halter broken stands tied and will let us handle her udders without kicking.

    The question is will we run into any problems? Like will we have to supplement the calf or take it off of her to get any milk. If we milk will we have to be consistent or can it fluctuate if were not taking all of her milk.

    Any feed back's great?
     
  2. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

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    One of the farms I test has a Holstein-Angus cross giving 80 pounds of milk per day! So yeah, even with a straight Angus there should be plenty for you and a calf ...

    The problem with not milking consistently is that her milk supply will drop to the point where she only makes as much as is being used. If you don't milk her often enough to keep production up, you'll end up shortchanging the calf. Or if you leave more milk in her than the calf can drink, she'll be at greater risk for developing mastitis.

    Milking once a day is fine as long as the calf's on her ... you can probably skip a day occasionally without ill effect ... but I wouldn't recommend milking any less than that.
     

  3. Celtic_Knot

    Celtic_Knot Celtic Heritage Farms

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    I think I could manage once a day. I'd love to have a dairy cow but my comitment to my meat animals is taxing enough. Now I assume if we leave the calf on her side that we shouldn't milk her out completley. Could we start with a set amount like half a gallon and just milk that amount each day?
     
  4. longshadowfarms

    longshadowfarms Well-Known Member

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    I guarantee that the calf will get plenty if you've got any kind of pasture at all. The bigger challenge will be getting to her before the calf does to get some milk when that calf gets to be about a month old. You do need to be consistent with how often you milk, time of day and what not but you can supplement with a little grain and/or lock up the calf for a few hours per day to get the milk you want. Our Hereford successfully raised 4 calves (her own, the Jersey's and 2 calves we bought at auction) one summer after our Jersey died of cancer. All 4 of them would nurse at once. We did grain her a bit to help her keep up with production.
     
  5. JulieLou42

    JulieLou42 Well-Known Member

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    My Ginger's mother is a Guernsey-Angus cross ...BIG cow!...and she has the rear quarters of a dairy cow, and the front quarters of beef. Her bag, however, is like Angus...small...so she's not a big milk producer, which is nice, but then, you're feeding a bigger cow! She milks just fine, but is very protective/defensive of her calf, and they had to be separated, were I to get any of her milk! So, I sold her calf right off2
     
  6. tinknal

    tinknal Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you can do this, I would recomend removing the calf from the cow several hours before you milk. Wash her udder with warm water before you milk (this will help her let her milk down) milk out what you want, then let her calf back at her. The cows individual disposition will determine how well this works. I grew up with angus, and I can tell you that with most of them this will work well, and with a few it will be a disaster.......lol . Since you are asking "extra" from the cow, you need to give her extra, in other words, grain her well.
     
  7. Celtic_Knot

    Celtic_Knot Celtic Heritage Farms

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    Aye her penmate a fellow angus was the other one. At least he was the steer and not the hiefer. Would have been really hard to put him in the frezzer if their dispositions had been switched.
     
  8. george darby

    george darby Well-Known Member

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    just pen the calf away from the cow the night before you want the milk and then milk her out in the morning or pen the calf away for the day and milk in the evening if that suits your schedle better ,i have a angus that i milk ocasionaly when the milk cows are dry not as efficient as the milk cow but keeps me from buying store purchased milk ,tiny teats but she has a very good disposition so that makes up for it. i have a few cows i have to watch they give too much milk when they first come freash and the udder swells making it hard for the calf to nurse.
     
  9. tinknal

    tinknal Well-Known Member Supporter

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    LOL Celtic, we had a steer that we had to shoot to get it to the locker plant. On a not so funny note, had a neighbor killed by an angus steer.
     
  10. Celtic_Knot

    Celtic_Knot Celtic Heritage Farms

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    Oh that's terrible , I don't think I've ever met an angus like that. Maybe a show steer or two but they're just hopped up on grain really.

    Anyway if she wasn't a hussy and jumped the fence during her heat she should calve in early to mid april. We'll see how her dispositon is with her calf and then will give milking a try based on that. Hopefully she won't turn into the wicked witch of the west when her calf comes, alot of my friends have warned me (rather jokingly they all think it's funny we settled for an angus) about calf induced bi-polarity with angus hiefers.
     
  11. Hip_Shot_Hanna

    Hip_Shot_Hanna Well-Known Member

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    We had an Angus/Holstein that we bottle raised from a baby. She was gentle enough I guess, that is to say we could lead her on a halter and so forth, stake her out etc.

    Milking her was a whole nother ball of wax though. We DID milk her, but she was pretty difficult about it. It took two of us, we had to tie her head up tight to something like a tree (And she still tried to walk her backside around it) and she kicked like mad. That was what the other person was for - to take her tail and bend it up over her back enough to put pressure on the nerves to slow her hooves down. (Not to torture her.. lol!)

    The milk we got from her was plentiful enough for us and the calf, but it never had any cream in it to speak of. It was nearly skim!

    Mind you, she kicked her own calf in the head every time he nursed, poor thing.. even newborn. She'd rap him hard on the top of his head quite often. I was always surprised that he didn't just give up.

    I think if you want the cream you need to remember to strip out the cow, the richest milk is the last little bit. We never stripped out Bonnie because it was just too much aggravation to milk her. I think we finally decided after a month or so that it was just too much work.

    Our next milk cow was a lovely Jersey so calm that we didn't have to do anything but put her feed in the box. My kids learned to milk on her, and she could be milked by two kids, one on each side. (I'd have milked the first one this way if she'd have had it, by that I mean being able to put some feed in a box and lightly tie her up, but it wasn't possible)

    Hope your Angus is easier to milk!