The cows so far have been very friendly. They often follow us around the edge of the pasture when we walk around.Continue reading
This year they were on the smaller side as they were part of the end of summer births last year so were only ~10 months old whereas the cows we hosted in prior years were closer to 12 months old by the time they arrived here.
Because they were on the smaller side, in addition to all of the grass they could eat, they also received supplemental grain every few days so they would put on extra weight. Feeding the extra grain really made a big difference in how friendly the cows were. With the grain feedings, they would often run across the pastures when they saw anyone coming close to their gate.Continue reading
Each year we host a few cows from a neighbor’s farm on our pastures for the summer. The cows eat the grass (meaning we don’t have to mow – the goats can’t eat enough on their own to make a dent in the full pasture) and the neighbor gets to reduce any stress on his own pastures.
This year, we are again hosting 3 yearling heifers. Their names are Nia, Della and Missy. They are all Red Angus and look very similar – it is hard to tell them apart without looking very closely. Nia is slightly larger than the others and Missy has a small white spot on her tail, but other than that they look the same.
A few days after their arrival, we noticed one of the cows seemed to be spending a long time in the shed instead of grazing. She might have been in there for an hour or two. Turns out she got her head stuck in the cow head gate and couldn’t get it out on her own. The cow head gate is used to lock their head into place in case you need to do anything to the cow such as give medication or dress a wound. We unhooked the gate and she was able to get her head out and rejoin the others in the pasture.
Long time readers may remember that our pastures have been the summer home for 3 different yearling heifers from a neighbor’s farm for each of the past 2 years. This year is no different.
The 3 cows arrived in late May. Their names are Jean, Raven and Faith.
Shortly after arriving at our farm, they actually squeezed through a loose gate and escaped from the farm. They had quite an adventure.
With the summer winding down, it was time for the 3 tenant cows to head back to their home farm for breeding before winter. Now the goats get to have the run of the pastures until spring.
Here is a close-up of the cows at their water trough a few days before they went back home. Bell comes up close to check out the camera.
Click through for more pictures of the cows.
Loyal readers may remember Sunshine, one of the tenant cows that used our pasture during summer 2015.
She gave birth to a calf, named Bert, in early summer 2016. Unfortunately, Sunshine rejected the calf and wouldn’t care for it. Other cows in the herd won’t take care of an abandoned calf so the calf needs to be hand raised to survive.
We went to visit Bert at his home farm a couple of miles away. Our neighbor let us bottle feed Bert for one of his meals.
Click through for more photos and videos of Bert.
The new cows have arrived!
Three new 1-year-old cows were dropped off last weekend to spend the summer at our farm grazing on our pastures. Just like last summer, these cows are part of a pasture lease and the cows will eat the grass to help them grow to maturity while at the same time reducing our need to mow and maintain the pastures over the summer.
The 3 cows we hosted last summer each gave birth to a calf this spring back at their home farm.
Click through to read more about each of the new cows for summer 2016.