Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: bull hire  (Read 8222 times)

rab macablo

  • Joined Jan 2011
bull hire
« on: January 30, 2011, 05:06:16 pm »
I would be interested to hear about your experiences of bull hire.
Do most comercial cattle farmers seem prepared to hire out bulls or (as I suspect) is the hassle and risk of disease such that most feel its not worth their while?
Is it more usual to bring the bull onto your land or take the cows to the bull?
How much would you expect to pay?

HappyHippy

  • Guest
Re: bull hire
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2011, 05:38:32 pm »
When my Dad had his cows (a 100 head herd of beef cows) he always AI'd them.
Don't know if this is the standard practice or not but others will tell you for sure.
HTH
Karen

OhLaLa

  • Joined Sep 2010
Re: bull hire
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2011, 06:06:41 pm »
Yep, AI'd them on the farm I worked at too. Chosen from a chart, stored in the fridge.

 :cow:

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: bull hire
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2011, 06:53:49 pm »
We're using AI for our two Shetland heifers mainly because of biosecurity issues.

Paul Sill

  • Joined Jan 2009
Re: bull hire
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2011, 08:34:12 pm »
My parents stopped using AI during foot and mouth. Got a bull in as soon as and now buys calves from local dairy farms and rears them on. Bull a few people do bull hire, They will bring the bull to you, not sure of cost or minimum times.

When you only have a couple of cattle an AI would be your best option, it will give you more of a selection of bulls.

Although starting to use bulls again improved the conception rate within the dairy herd. They are shifted on quite early as friesian bulls tend to turn quite nasty.

landroverroy

  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: bull hire
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2011, 02:03:01 am »
Hiring a bull in is not cheap and as you say there's the risk of infection. AI is ok but you always get some cows that don't take 1st ( or 2nd or 3rd....) time so have to keep a close eye on them to see if they're coming back in season.
 I found, from when I started off with 3 cows, that it that it was easier and cost effective to buy a decent young bull - 8 months upwards, and sell him on when he'd done the job. I make more selling the bull on as a proven and mature bull than I do from fattening a similar store animal.
Rules are made:
  for the guidance of wise men
  and the obedience of fools.

VSS

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Pen Llyn
    • Viable Self Sufficiency.co.uk
Re: bull hire
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2011, 10:07:47 am »
We have used AI consistently over the last twelve years and never had much trouble getting the cows in calf. You also have access to much better genetics than you would get from hired bull. Genus have a wide range of bulls to fit every need. If your phone them before 10am they will guarantee to inseminate your cow the same day. If you find it hard to see when they are bulling you could consider putting in a prid, and then you will know exactly whenthey will bull.

Genus also offer mixed breed doses which increase the chnace of conception. This is a good choice if you go down the prid route.
The SHEEP Book for Smallholders
Available from the Good Life Press

www.viableselfsufficiency.co.uk

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: bull hire
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2011, 12:30:26 pm »
We're using the PRID route, which is using hormones to bring the cows into season at a time that suits you and the AI technician. With only two, spotting heat might be quite difficult, so our vet advised this.

The charge to have a cow inseminated via Genus is £10.40 plus VAT and £6.15 plus VAT per month to store the straws. Semen from RBST is £10 per straw plus a £5 consignment fee (incl VAT). I'm not sure how much the vet will cost - it was £50 plus VAT for the previous hormone injection to bring them into season when we first got them.

Hope this helps.

shetlandpaul

  • Joined Oct 2008
Re: bull hire
« Reply #8 on: January 31, 2011, 03:15:32 pm »
rosemary. speak to the herdbook they have contacts with the bull hire scheme for the crofting districts. they maybe able to help.

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: bull hire
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2011, 03:52:31 pm »
But we're not in the crofting districts  :)

shetlandpaul

  • Joined Oct 2008
Re: bull hire
« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2011, 09:33:37 am »
still they maybe willing to help. they are keen on supporting the herd.

VSS

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Pen Llyn
    • Viable Self Sufficiency.co.uk
Re: bull hire
« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2011, 10:15:57 am »
I'm not sure how much the vet will cost - it was £50 plus VAT for the previous hormone injection to bring them into season when we first got them.


I am not 100% sure about this, but I don't think we had a hormone injection after the prid was removed. If you take out a progesterone releasing device, the animal will come in to season a couple of days later - with the injection you may get a stronger heat. I am certain we never had the vet to do any of this with ours.
The SHEEP Book for Smallholders
Available from the Good Life Press

www.viableselfsufficiency.co.uk

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: bull hire
« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2011, 12:01:11 pm »
Sorry, I didn't make myself clear - the calves had been running with the bull (their sire) before we bought them. Shetlands mature sexually very early and there was a possibility that, at 6 months, they would be in calf. We had the vet jag them to bring them into season and therefore abort any foetus they might have been carrying. It cost £50 for the two of them. I included it as an indicator only.

I have a note of the PRID routine in my cattle folder but can't remember the details - I just remember the vet telling me that I'll be able to remove the device myself  ;D. I think I stopped listening then  ;D

 

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