Farming forum: jersey cow

Views: 531, Replies: 15 » Jump to the end
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

Tomato Heads
Image
texaskitty111
Apr 7, 2014 11:00 AM CST
Anyone have information on jersey cows? I'm interested in making my own butter, cheese, and ice cream. I love the way jersey cows look, and that they don't give an overwhelming amount of milk, but i have never had a cow. As they hard to milk? How long do they have milk? Can they be pregnant and still give milk? Do they get along with goats and horses? Online it said they were one of the more nervous of cows. I looked up the miniature jersey cows, but they don't look like what I think of as a jersey cow. Any info would be appreciated.
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Keeper of Poultry Farmer Roses Raises cows
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
porkpal
Apr 7, 2014 12:42 PM CST
@dave has jerseys and will be able to answer your questions.
Porkpal
Name: Kathleen Tenpas
Wickwire Corners NY (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! The WITWIT Badge Raises cows Region: New York Farmer
Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
Kathleen
Apr 7, 2014 1:36 PM CST
Dave is indeed the man to ask, but here's some reading on the subject (from an historical viewpoint: http://books.google.com/books/about/The_Jersey_Alderney_and_...

Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Image
dave
Apr 7, 2014 1:42 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

texaskitty111 said:As they hard to milk? How long do they have milk? Can they be pregnant and still give milk? Do they get along with goats and horses? Online it said they were one of the more nervous of cows.


We never have a problem with milking jerseys but we've never milked any other kinds of cows so I don't know how they would compare to a Guernsey or something like that. They are much more docile than goats, for sure.

After they give birth to their calf, we start milking them right away. About 2 months later we breed them again and then 7 months after that we dry them up. So we milk for about 9 months, then 3 months of dry.

Plenty of people raise goats alongside cows. They don't compete much for food, and their parasites don't affect each other.

I've never noticed a cow to be particularly nervous. Our cows are always easy going. I once picked up a cow from a neighbor and she was the meaning jersey you've ever seen. She would have killed me if she could have gotten to me. We kept her for about 12 hours and off she went!

Sounds like you'd do well to get a good book on the subject of raising milk cows. We have this book and like it: http://www.amazon.com/Keeping-Family-Cow-Joann-Grohman/dp/09...
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

Tomato Heads
Image
texaskitty111
Apr 7, 2014 3:19 PM CST
Thanks, I'll check it out
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Tim Hoover
Elysian FIelds, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Seller of Garden Stuff Beekeeper Ponds
Image
TimHoover
Apr 9, 2014 9:26 PM CST
I too have thought off and on about getting a Jersey. You know why I do not? I just do not know what I would do with that much milk. At 50, I do not much need or want to drink milk. 7 of my kids are grown and gone, and my 3 year old is good for a gallon every 4 days or so.
It seems there are so many restrictions about selling fresh milk (if I recall correctly) that I would not even want to think about it. I am sure there are plenty of people who would "take it off my hands" but honestly, I am not going to put that much time and money into anything just to give it away. I have done to much of that it in my life already lol.
I wish I would have gotten on the stick and done it 20 years ago when I had a ton of kids at home.
Who knows? I may yet do it. I am prone to flights of foolishness.
Name: Toni Melvin
Sherwood Oregon (Zone 8a)
Region: Oregon Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Herbs Beekeeper
Permaculture Composter Canning and food preservation Bee Lover Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
Toni
Apr 9, 2014 10:12 PM CST
My neighbor has 4 Jersey milk cows. She loves them. I LOVE their milk Lovey dubby We live here in NW Oregon and she gives cheese classes, and sells their raw milk for 18 dollars a gallon. And we all pay that price *Blush* I love making cheese, yogurt, butter, and every now and then drinking that tremendously healthy goodness. It has been soooo many years since I have milked a cow, but, I do still toy with the idea of getting one.... dream, dream, dream Right now, I just feel so fortunate that I have a source for such healthy product.
Toni
I aspire to be the person my dog thinks I am
Name: Tom
Southern Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Irises Vegetable Grower Butterflies Region: Wisconsin Keeps Horses Cat Lover
Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry Daylilies Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
tveguy3
Apr 11, 2014 5:58 PM CST
Tim, if you don't need to drink that much milk there are lots of ways to use it. You could raise a veal calf, and market it when it's big enough, and buy another new born. That would use most of the milk. I used to feed my extra goats milk to the chickens. They loved it, and buy the way, milk fed chicken meat is wonderful! Or raise a hog or two, They love milk. I would love a cow, but I guess I don't need any more chores to do right now. They do tie you down though, unless you let a calf run with her.
I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion. - Alexander the Great
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

Tomato Heads
Image
texaskitty111
Apr 11, 2014 6:58 PM CST
If you let a calf run with her, can you milk only as you need it?
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Image
dave
Apr 11, 2014 7:33 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Great advice, Tom. Thumbs up Raising calves is an excellent use for milk. We frequently have a bottle calf and it's a good use for the milk. If you have dairies in your area you can get little bulls for cheap since nobody wants to mess with bottle babies.

@texaskitty111 that has never worked for us. The cow gives all her milk to the calf and resents you trying to take any.
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

Tomato Heads
Image
texaskitty111
Apr 11, 2014 7:40 PM CST
Well, I'll keep trying to find a neighbor who wants to milk share. Most people are into beef cattle. However, there is a guy about 10 miles from here who has bought about 100+ young jerseys. If I can find his house, I may go ask what he's planning for them.
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
So Cal (Zone 10b)
Cat Lover Forum moderator Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
OldGardener
Apr 12, 2014 10:04 AM CST
My experience has been different than Dave's. We have kept calves on the udder and milked 2x/day and still walked away with a good bucketful every milking. Our initial girls were from a dairy (production cows) and had never kept their calves before coming home with us so maybe this has something to do with why they were just fine with us milking while they had babes.

Our girls had very distinct personalities from one another but none were what I would call nervous by any stretch. The one common thread between them all is they all enjoyed grooming us at every opportunity.
"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." -Abraham Lincoln
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

Tomato Heads
Image
texaskitty111
Apr 12, 2014 11:03 AM CST
Interesting!
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
So Cal (Zone 10b)
Cat Lover Forum moderator Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
OldGardener
Apr 12, 2014 12:36 PM CST
We also kept both horses and goats (as well as chickens and a pair of ostriches) near the cows and it never bothered them at all - they really were easy going girls. They were quite interested when 2 of our mares foaled next to them about 2 hours apart and we did have to move the cows as they kept sticking their heads through the rails and making the one maiden mare nervous. I think you will enjoy Jerseys. In fact, I recently purchased a Jersey girl for our TX property and the sheep & goats there don't bother her at all.
"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." -Abraham Lincoln
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

Tomato Heads
Image
texaskitty111
Apr 20, 2014 6:01 PM CST
Well, I have read half of the book you recommended, @dave, and it changed my mind totally. Not getting a cow. Too much work, etc. And, at $18 a gallon , @Toni, doubt I'll be buying any milk, either. Books very interesting, though, and I'm going to finish it. Interesting look at farm life.

Thumb of 2014-04-21/texaskitty111/09aad6

Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Keeper of Poultry Farmer Roses Raises cows
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
porkpal
Apr 20, 2014 6:14 PM CST
Yes, cows do tie you down. However, those are very cute calves...
Porkpal

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Farming forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Today's site banner is by Baja_Costero and is called "Agave"