|Posted by morninglanddairy on August 13, 2010 at 12:49 PM||comments (2)|
We need to put a well in this fall, so we need to sell some heifers to fund the well! I really planned on keeping all these girls, but we only need 16-17 and we have 23. So a few can go.
This well will be running waterers to all the back pastures, so we can utilize them better. Right now we can't use them at all. Its too far back to the waterers to make the cows walk each time they get thirsty. Too far in this heat.
We are supposed to get a cooler spell next week.:)
|Posted by morninglanddairy on August 10, 2010 at 6:02 PM||comments (0)|
Heat.....have I mentioned the heat lately?:roll:
It is amazingly hot. Its not that it is unusual for us to get real hot spells. No, its not that. Its the fact that this really hot spell has lasted since mid-June(with a couple cooler days thrown in here or there)! So, its just plain HOT. The evening milkings have been pushed back down to 6:00, we have set up sprinklers in the holding pen so that the cows get cooled off nicely before they come into the barn under the fans. And they still pant.
The Jerseys and crosses handle it noticably better than the pure Holstiens. One more reason we are breeding away from straight Holstien.
Got the last heifer disbudded last week. She is still on her dam and is growing like a weed on all the milk she wants.
Have most of the herd dried off at this time. Only putting 28 through the barn and the 8 heifers that are being taught the ropes. Oh, speaking of the heifers.....they all went through the barn by themselves last night! No problems, they all just walked right in as calm as can be. What a nice feeling.
Its a good thing too, since some look like they could calve within three weeks.
|Posted by morninglanddairy on July 28, 2010 at 7:24 PM||comments (0)|
Ah, its been cooler this week. Only low nineties for a change. The cows have perked up with the lower temps and I *finally* got the last calves disbudded. I could have done it earlier, but with it being SO hot, I hated to stress them more.
Well, I almost have the last calves done. The very last born is only a month old and on her dam. I'll disbudd her in the next few days.
|Posted by morninglanddairy on July 23, 2010 at 5:06 PM||comments (1)|
Well, we had a neighbors rodeo bull break in with our young heifers last weekend. I know he bred some of them. They are too young to breed safely yet, so we will be inducing a heat cycle here in a week or so to be sure they do not stay pregnant. Durn bull!
Our 8 bred heifers are now running with the dairy her to get accustomed to the routine. They are very calm, but so far have not even come close to walking through the dairy barn. Several of them love to have their necks scratched. Maybe thats the problem....they are too tame! They are not really interested in feed(not haveing had any since they were about a year old), so no inducements to walk into that "scary" barn with the working cows. Oh well, they don't start calving till September, so we have a little time.
Still hot.....the continuous heat is getting very hard on the cows. The late-lactation cows are trying to dry off and the early lactation cows are still giving lots of milk, but they are losing flesh. No one wants to eat much in this weather. We really could use a break.
Edited to add:
Success!! I just finished evening milking and *all* the heifers walked through the dairy barn at the end of milking. Dad and I set up a gate so we could pen them right up to the barn entrance. We coaxed, pushed, pulled all 8 heifers into the barn and then they casually walked on through and out the other side. Now that they know the barn won't eat them, I expect they will start wandering through on their own soon.:)
|Posted by morninglanddairy on July 19, 2010 at 5:45 PM||comments (0)|
We have gotten several wonderful rain showers in the past week so everything is greening up again and we've been able to start grazing the cows on pasture once again.
We sold 6 cows last week, and dried off 17 head. They start calving in September. Now if this heat will break, I will be able to disbudd the last calves born.....
|Posted by morninglanddairy on July 13, 2010 at 5:11 PM||comments (2)|
RAIN!!! God blessed us with rain over the weekend. Not so much as we need, but a great start. Everything is greening up a bit and the dust has settled for now. Maybe, just maybe if we get some more, our pastures will start growing again.
We decided to let #64(the cow that calved in June), raise her own calf. I have no other calves to raise with her, so she would be very lonely as a bottle calf by herself. So we kept mama and baby together in a separate pasture until baby was two weeks old and well started. Then we turned she and her mother out with the dairy herd. She is doing very well, fat and sassy with all the milk she could want. She comes up with the dairy herd morning and night and stands with the herd on the holding pen just chewing her cud. When she sees mama go in the barn, she scoots under the board at the back of the pen and waits for her to come out the other door after milking. Then off they trot to field again, very happy together. We will wean her off her mama before putting the bulls back in the herd in December. Wouldn't want her to breed too early.
|Posted by morninglanddairy on July 3, 2010 at 5:14 PM||comments (2)|
It is so very dry.........no rain in well over a month now and it has been hot, hot, hot. Our pastures are all brown and we are feeding the cows on all hay now. And hay will be in short supply this season as well. Everyone is feeding hay already and very few people have been able to get more than one cutting so far because of the drought.
The preg-check results were good. Most all the ladies are pregnant and we will begin drying off in mid-July. We pulled the bulls out of the herd the beginning of July.
We are cutting the goat cheese flavors now and I really like the garlic and chive. The hot pepper goat and italian goat are good but the garlic chive is *really* good in my opinion. Can't wait to try the dill (our new cow colby flavor.)
|Posted by morninglanddairy on June 27, 2010 at 4:43 PM||comments (0)|
Preg-checking on Friday went well. Only a few cows were open(not-bred), and those were mainly ones that had calved within the last two months. A couple older girls were still open, we will give them some more time. We will need to start drying cows off in July for their two-month rest period before calving starts in September. Most are due between September and December, a few in early 2011. Pulling the bull out of the herd in July also, so we don't get hot-weather calves next year.
|Posted by morninglanddairy on June 24, 2010 at 9:22 AM||comments (0)|
Yesterday was annual vaccination day for the dairy herd. Two shots per cow, 60 cows total. I gave the shots in the dairy barn while a friend milked. The cows didn't appreciate me at all. I feel I got off quite lightly with just a kicked leg, a bruised arm and a swollen finger on my right hand(hand milking my goats afterwards was a real painful experience).
I noticed yesterday that the mineral feeders are getting low, so I'm out to put out several bags of loose mineral today.
This continual heat and humidity has dropped the cows production a little now. If we don't get a break soon, I expect it will drop some more.
Tomorrow is preg-check day.
|Posted by morninglanddairy on June 21, 2010 at 10:32 PM||comments (0)|
When I went out to check on #64 yesterday morning I found her in a very thoughtful mood off in a corner of the pasture in a patch of woods.
I knew it would be soon.
About 4:00 pm I found her with a brand new heifer calf that hadn't even stood yet.
Poor thing, it was up there mighty close to triple digits when she was born. But she got a full tummy and seems very content and healthy hanging out in the shade with her mother.
Now we are truly finished for this calving season!
Our vet is coming out on Friday to do the whole herd preg-checking......