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Wee Mak and cattle health testing

Tuesday 25 November, 2014

by Rosemary Champion at 10:17am in Cattle 3 comments Add your own

Wee Mak, the bull, is safely home. Why Wee Mak? Middle letters of his name "Kingmaker" and he's wee. At some point, he'll be Big Mak and then even later, "Big Mac".

He travelled well and has settled fine; he's naturally nervous as he's been running 1000ft up in the Peak District with the herd and little human contact. However, a morning bribe of soaked sugar beet with some calf nuts on top is helping him to settle down. He'll now accept a good scratch on his neck and shoulders. TBH, he'll be lonely and he likes the company, even if it's only a human.

Kingmaker cleared for takeoff

Friday 14 November, 2014

by Rosemary Champion at 9:13am in Cattle 0 comments Add your own

Dan was preparing to drive to Derbyshire next week to pick up our new stock bull, Wharncliffe Kingmaker when we got the results of his BVD test. His TB test had been fine.

His BVD test showed that he was positive for the BVD antibody but negatve for the antigen. The negative antigen result means that he is not a PI; the positive antibody means that he's been in contact with the virus - this could be through contact with the virus itself or from vaccination. In young animals, the contact can be via the dam's colostrum. The breeder confirmed that the bull had not been vaccinated.

Big cow day

Wednesday 22 October, 2014

by Rosemary at 5:54pm in Cattle 0 comments Add your own

Phew, vet’s office called this morning to say he’d be here at 9.30am. I expected (hoped) we’d be the last call of the day.

The cattle came in fine; the four cows were haltered and tied up with some hay; the three calves were haltered and left to throw them selves around (well, Rosie was OK as she’s been haltered before) and Charlie was put out in the field with some hay as he was being a pain in the tonsils and trying to mount the others that were tied up. Always has an eye out for the main chance, does Charlie.

Big day tomorrow

Tuesday 21 October, 2014

by Rosemary at 5:20pm in Cattle 1 comment Add your own

Vet’s coming to scan the three cows and the heifer; castrate the bull calf; blood sample the calves for BVD testing and jag the heifer calves to ensure they aren’t in calf.

We’ve got new halters so there’s one for every animal, without having to use the ponies’ halters.

New cattle haltersShiny new cattle halters from ropeservices on eBay.

Cuddling cows

Thursday 2 October, 2014

by Rosemary Champion at 11:16am in Cattle 0 comments Add your own

We moved Storm, our bull, back to our rented grazing a couple of nights ago. He and our 2012 bullock are going for slaughter next week and we've arranged for the haulier to pick up there rather than here, as we're doing work on the barn and track next week.

He's quite canny and loaded a dream; but now he's away, I can get in and give the girls a good scratch and a cuddle :-) He was put in with the cows in August and has been running with them for nearly ten weeks. If last year's performance is anything to go by, all four should be in calf. If they are, it will be Breeze and Blizzard's fourth pregnacy, Annie's second and Bonnie's first.

What Storm did next

Monday 11 August, 2014

by Rosemary Champion at 9:36am in Cattle 0 comments Add your own

We brought Storm home on 22nd July to run with the four cows. There was much "actvity" when he went out and he seemed to spend a couple of days with each of the cows pretty much in turn, starting with Breeze. I never saw him serve any of them - I saw him try to mount Breeze but she wouldn't stand for him. I'm not worried about not seeing him work as we didn't see him last year either, and he clearly did :-)

You'll recall that the three cows calved on consecutive days in May this year - our vet said that in small herds, oestrus was sometimes synchronised naturally.

Storm's back home

Tuesday 22 July, 2014

by Rosemary Champion at 1:48pm in Cattle 2 comments Add your own

Our bull, Storm, had a run in with some wire a few weeks ago. All was well -  healing cleanly and he wasn't lame but the scab's come off and the flies were on it so we took the trailer up today to contain him so we could get some antibiotic spray on it.

I planned to put him out with the cows 12th August, aiming for the same calving dates as this year (23-25th May) but I decided if we were getting him in the trailer anyway, we'd bring him home a bit earlier.

The calves are just over eight weeks old and, if he serves all four cows today, our calving will be 1st May, which is fine.It means Bonnie's a wee bit younger than I would have liked but she's quite well grown.

Kirrie Show 2014

Monday 21 July, 2014

by Rosemary Champion at 10:37am in Cattle 0 comments Add your own

Well, Saturday turned out to be a wee bit damp for the show, but at least there was no danger of the livestock overheating :-)

We packed the car with most stuff the night before and we were up early but somehow, we were still rushing to get away at just before 8am. How does that happen?

Thankfully, Annie and Rosie loaded like a dream - even though Rosie hadn't been on the trailer before.

The "Other Native Breed" section had a small entry - actually, just us. It's a real shame. The organisers work so hard - since we started the Festival, I have so much sympathy for, and empathy with, them.

Shetlands on BBC Landward 20th June

Wednesday 11 June, 2014

by Rosemary Champion at 11:50am in Cattle 0 comments Add your own

Just had the crew from BBC Landward here filming our Shetland heifer, Bonnie (and the others) , for their Royal Highland Show programme going out 20th June. Bonnie will be on the RBST stand at the HIghland so they'll catch up with her there too.

Hope she behaves better than she did today though :-)

Great publicity for our wee, rare Scottish breed - and fully deserved. 'cos they are a great breed.

The Inbetweeners

Sunday 8 June, 2014

by Rosemary Champion at 11:15am in Cattle 0 comments Add your own

Our bull (Storm, 2012), and two bullocks (George, 2012 and Charlie, 2013) are at our temporary grazing. Our plan is to put all bullocks up there at weaning and they'll stay there until they go to slaughter at 24-28 months. They winter out in a paddock with a small wood attached, so they have plenty shelter.

I kind of think of the three of them as "The Inbetweeners" ;-) George and Storm are pains in the neck; Charlie's pretty canny.The two big 'uns are always pushing each other around, while Charlie eats.

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