NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: starting out  (Read 450 times)

DenisCooper

  • Joined May 2016
starting out
« on: September 29, 2018, 06:57:15 pm »
Hi,

Im thinking of getting a couple of cattle for my small holding but don't have any real experience of cattle yet. I've got sheep, poultry and fowl currently.

Can anyone recommend any good books / sites / courses etc for cattle?

Thanks
Denis
Voss Electric Fence

Backinwellies

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Sep 2012
  • Llandeilo Carmarthenshire
    • Nantygroes
    • Facebook
Re: starting out
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2018, 09:15:13 pm »
Where are you and how big is your smallholding?
Linda

Don't wrestle with pigs, they will love it and you will just get all muddy.

Let go of who you are and become who you are meant to be.

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DenisCooper

  • Joined May 2016
Re: starting out
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2018, 09:03:52 am »
Morning Linda

We’ve got a 15 acre small holiding in Staffordshire

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: starting out
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2018, 09:40:44 am »
Hi Dave. I'd recommend "Caring for cows" and "Cows for the smallholder" both by Valerie Porter.
Have you thought about what you want from them? Beef, milk, both?
We keep Shetland cattle; started with two heifers in 2010. Just had our 20th calf this year. WE milk the cows once a day for the house and run steers on for beef.
If you look in the Diary above, you'll see stuff about our cattle.

DenisCooper

  • Joined May 2016
Re: starting out
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2018, 12:38:22 pm »
Thanks I’ll get a copy of those books.

Will mainly be for beef. I don’t really have time to milk them at present with everything else on the holding and a day job too.

I would probably want a couple and and a male for breeding to be brought in.

twizzel

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: starting out
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2018, 09:32:57 am »
Note you are in staffordshire- high risk tb area so presume testing annually? If so, bringing a bull in on hire could be difficult. You might be better finding someone to AI them. Keep in mind you'll also need adequate handling facilities for tb testing every year. It might be worth you going to see a smallholder with a similar setup to what you're planning, cattle are a different kettle of fish to sheep in terms of handling and care and take a lot longer to become beef so whilst you may have 2 cows in the first year, by year 2 you should have 2 cows and 2 calves, then year 3 2 cows, 2 bullocks and 2 more calves and it wouldn't be until end of year 3/year 4 that you start to send some off for killing.

 

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