NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: How soon for another calf??  (Read 5433 times)

TRUFFLE

  • Joined May 2009
How soon for another calf??
« on: April 15, 2011, 10:01:50 pm »
We have had the lovely arrival of a highland heifer calf last week! Just gorgeous and very exciting.  A farmer friend of ours has suggested that we might want to think about having the mother in calf again within a few months time!!  Well, I can only think of how I felt having had my first child, and the prospect of anything remotely even trying to camouflage itself as reproduction got short shrift from me  :( ;D. So, I would feel quite sorry for my cow if I orchestrated a pregnancy for her again when she is already feeding a calf, but am I right to feel so sentimental about this, or is it quite alright for a cow to be pregnant (with all the demands that makes on her) whilst feeding a very young calf (ditto)?? Any views gratefully received.
Voss Electric Fence

robert waddell

  • Guest
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2011, 10:30:20 pm »
in the end it is your decision as to if it has another calf or not  :wave:
it has to be AI,D or running with a bull by the time the calf is 3 months it is just good commercial practise :wave:
they are more receptive the shorter time they back in calf :cow: :wave: :cow:

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2011, 09:02:44 am »
Commercially, the aim would be to have the cow calve every 12 months, so given a 9 month pregnancy, you'd want her back in calf when the current calf is about 3 months old. If she's fit and healthy, she shouldn't take any harm.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2011, 11:52:56 am »
Congratulations! 

I don't know where you are or what sort of ground you are on, but if it is good ground you may need to take care that your beautiful native girl doesn't get over-fat.  This could make her next calving difficult, or if she got fat before being served could make conception harder to achieve. 

So you might want her to be well in calf by the time she weans the current one - and if it is good ground you might try to avoid her being dry when there is too much good grass, so have her calve late winter / early spring (bull her July for April calf - or earlier if you are where the spring grass really gets going earlier.)

And as to whether she should be served within 3 months of calving - she'll not conceive unless she's bulling, and if she's come a-bulling she definitely wants to be served!   ;)  :yum:
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

darkbrowneggs

  • Joined Aug 2010
    • The World is My Lobster
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2011, 01:05:06 pm »
I would agree with all of the posters - it is a cow after all, and designed and wanting to calve each year.  Humans are different, and to transpose your feelings may not be what your cow might want

All the best
Sue
To follow my travel journal see http://www.theworldismylobster.org.uk

For lots of info about Marans and how to breed and look after them see www.darkbrowneggs.info

robert waddell

  • Guest
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2011, 01:21:43 pm »
transpose your feelings     that is a good one :wave:
the big difference betwean bovines and humans is the cow (bovine )will only mate with the bull when in season :)
humans on the other hand will mate at anytime given the right circumstances and supposed to monogamous :wave:

jacquip

  • Joined Apr 2011
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2011, 10:07:16 am »
We have had the lovely arrival of a highland heifer calf last week! Just gorgeous and very exciting.  A farmer friend of ours has suggested that we might want to think about having the mother in calf again within a few months time!!  Well, I can only think of how I felt having had my first child, and the prospect of anything remotely even trying to camouflage itself as reproduction got short shrift from me  :( ;D. So, I would feel quite sorry for my cow if I orchestrated a pregnancy for her again when she is already feeding a calf, but am I right to feel so sentimental about this, or is it quite alright for a cow to be pregnant (with all the demands that makes on her) whilst feeding a very young calf (ditto)?? Any views gratefully received.

Around three months is the usual time for thinking about putting your cow back into calf.  At the end of the day, it is up to you to decide if you want another calf, after giving consideration as to whether there is a demand for the resulting offspring or alternatively the space/funds to retain it.

princesspiggy

  • Guest
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2011, 12:31:21 pm »
Well, I can only think of how I felt having had my first child,

the thing with cows... they dont have to clean the house, go shopping, do the school run, cook dinner, run the farm or anything else when they are pregnant. not quite comparable to the supermum!!! 8) ;D ;D   lol

VSS

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Pen Llyn
    • Viable Self Sufficiency.co.uk
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2011, 04:39:58 pm »
Most cows come back in to season 7 weeks or so after calving - if you look out for the second season, so 10 weeks post calving, and put her in calf then, she will calve at the same time next year.
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Available from the Good Life Press

www.viableselfsufficiency.co.uk

TRUFFLE

  • Joined May 2009
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2011, 03:42:40 pm »
Thanks for all your replies - all very helpful and full of so much wisdom - the more questions i ask the more I realise I'm just a smallholding dimwit.  Anyway, it's clear from your feedback that cows were designed to be a reproduction machine, so I won't have any sleepless nights about getting her back in calf in 3 months time - thank the lord I'm not a cow!! (no witty retorts to that one please - I get enough of those at home!)  ::)

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #10 on: April 21, 2011, 12:22:27 pm »
Not a dimwit at all, just not yet very experienced.  We have all been there!  And many, like myself, are experienced in some things but starting out with others - so it's lovely to be able to share experience that we have and receive wisdom from others more experienced when we are trying things new to us.  (Sorry that's terrible grammer but hopefully the meaning is clear!)

And there's a lot of vicarious pleasure in hearing about other people's new ventures, and getting nostalgic for when we got our first heifer, lamb, pony, whatever.

Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

TRUFFLE

  • Joined May 2009
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2011, 10:57:17 pm »
Thanks Sally - where int North are you??  We are just south of Doncaster, so in some people's books we are North and in others we are very South!! We feel like we're in no man's land - the middle of the divide!!  ;D

TRUFFLE

  • Joined May 2009
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2011, 11:01:34 pm »
Silly me! Sally int North - just looked you up and you are definitely "int North" - very probably in some of our finest countryside you lucky thing!! xx  :wave:

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: How soon for another calf??
« Reply #13 on: April 23, 2011, 12:04:57 am »
Aye, nearly as far north as it gets in England - but I am only a few miles from the geographical centre of Britain, which just goes to emphasise the relative size of Scotland!

I was born and brought up very near the geographical centre of England, first job was near Luton where I had a boyfriend from Durham.  Everyone I was working with thought of me as a Northerner, but my boyfriend, who was a Northerner, thought of me as a Southerner.  I used to go up to complete strangers and tell them, "There's a place in the middle of the country, it's called the Midlands - and you can be from it!" (Not really  ;)) (I mean not really I didn't accost strangers in this way, not not really you can be from the Midlands)

Then I moved to Southampton, where everyone talked about my having moved from London...

I moved up here from Exmoor six years ago.  I think of whence I came here as 'south' but when folk hereabouts say, "Down south", they mean Yorkshire!

So I do know what you mean about "no man's land"!
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

 

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