Farming forum: Our new calf

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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!
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dave
Oct 14, 2011 9:49 AM CST

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We keep Jersey cows, but we've been wanting to bring in some Normandy genes because of their reputation as doing well on a low-grain high grass diet, and better weight gain.

In March of 2009, we were fortunate to be able to get a Jersey-Normandy cross bull calf from a dairy in Athens, TX. He is 1/4 Normandee and 3/4 Jersey. Just about right.

Here he is on day 2, standing next to Daisy (our main Jersey):
Thumb of 2011-10-14/dave/4c1ea9

Fast forward over 2 years. Here he is today:
Thumb of 2011-10-14/dave/d0a776

He's a fine bull with a gentle disposition (nevertheless, nobody is allowed in the pasture with him!)

Well, he bred Daisy and I am pleased to show the new calf!
Thumb of 2011-10-14/dave/a588a6

You can see that she got some of his attractive markings. We haven't named her yet and she's currently as wild as a deer, but we're working on her every day to get her tamed and calm. I think she'll make a fine addition to our herd!
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
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Kathleen
Oct 14, 2011 9:56 AM CST
What a pretty girl!

Yes, keep everyone away from him, especially as he gets older. I know you know how I feel about bulls - best kept in a nitrogen tank!

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!
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dave
Oct 14, 2011 10:40 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

My biggest regret with our bull is that I didn't disbud him when he was a calf. I didn't have a disbudding tool and so we just ignored the problem and now he has these horrible weapons.

I have a disbudding tool now, and we'll be using it in a few days with our new calf. Her little buds are just barely present so she's getting close to time.

I know what you mean about the nitrogen tank! We don't have any vets around here who will do that and we don't keep enough cows for me to justify spending the time learning, and buying the equipment, so we keep a bull. Maybe one day that situation will change.
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
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porkpal
Oct 14, 2011 10:46 AM CST
What lovely Jersey eyes your calf has! She needs a very feminine name.

We also have a cow named Daisy, but she is a Charolais.
Porkpal
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!
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dave
Oct 14, 2011 11:18 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

In honor of her wild nature, I suggested the name "Deer" but Trish was non-plussed.

BTW, she is a bit wild because Daisy taught her to be that way. Daisy took to distrusting us from the moment the calf was born and it took 3 weeks to catch this calf! They hid in the woods most of the day and I finally had to trick them into coming into a large pen I had built. I have her in a 10x10 pen right now and she is still easily startled.
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
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threegardeners
Oct 14, 2011 11:25 AM CST
I love the markings on that bull!! and the calf is sweet as can be Big Grin
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!
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dave
Oct 14, 2011 11:26 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I agree
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
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porkpal
Oct 15, 2011 9:54 PM CST
Does she have a name yet?
Porkpal
Name: Susie
Phoenix AZ (Zone 9a)
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Aguane
Oct 15, 2011 10:02 PM CST
Aw. Such a cute baby! Love the markings, too!
My friend used to have a pet calf (until it was taken into her dad's herd) ... she'd walk up and down the street with it on a rope like it was a dog.

My DB and SIL do that with their llama's. Too cute!

Congrats on the really pretty new little one!
“Don't give up too quickly"... unknown, I heard it somewhere.
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Name: Tami Smith
Naylor, GA (Zone 8b)
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mollymistsmith
Oct 16, 2011 12:31 AM CST
Gorgeous calf. When I was a young girl a friend of ours had a huge bull named Dagwood. I think he weighed close to a ton! Anywho, he was very docile with and obeyed his owner unless he was in with the women than he turned into a "raging bull." No one but the owner was allowed near him. He took many a fence down trying to get to his ladies. Hilarious!
Tami
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!
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dave
Oct 16, 2011 6:11 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I'd believe it!!!

porkpal: we haven't decided on a name just yet. I think we're waiting to get to know her a little better first. Smiling
Name: Anna Z.
Monroe, WI
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Cat Lover Raises cows Region: Wisconsin
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AnnaZ
Oct 19, 2011 1:31 PM CST
If the calf is wild now, may I be the first to inform you that it will NOT get any better, unless this beast is the exception. Our neighbor had some calves born in the summer in the pasture that were "wild"..........and when it came time to get them in in the fall, they could NOT, in any way, shape or form even get close to a couple of those calves. Got everyone else, the moms, etc. Sad to say, they had to "contribute to the food chain"..............but it couldn't be helped.
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
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dave
Oct 19, 2011 1:57 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

We've been hard at work on Elsie (that's her name now!) and I am pleased to say that this calf is an exception, and has become quite tame. She is in a small pen right next to my office (which has a door going outside) so I visit her several times a day. The children also make frequent visits to her. She is no longer startled when we approach, and she has no problem letting us pet her. Hurray!
Name: Charleen
Barnesville, Ga. Zone 7b-8 (Zone 8a)
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Ridesredmule
Oct 19, 2011 2:31 PM CST
She is a Beauty. That would be a good name. She really is a beautiful girl.
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
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Kathleen
Oct 19, 2011 2:42 PM CST
Just be careful about her head. We had a few that were born in the woods and ran wild for a couple of weeks. Food helps, and being consistent around her. Letting her know that you are now part of her life, the part that brings the food, is probably the best thing, and frequent reminders of what you look like when your not behind a bucket.

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
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dave
Oct 19, 2011 2:45 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

I agree

And nobody touches her head, period. That's a rule on the farm.

We're going to disbud this calf in a week or two. Not looking forward to that. Thumbs down
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
Perpetually happy!
Forum moderator Tip Photographer I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Critters Allowed Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Keeps Goats Keeper of Poultry Frogs and Toads Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian
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threegardeners
Oct 19, 2011 2:47 PM CST
um...why can't you touch her head? don't they like head scritches?
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
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dave
Oct 19, 2011 2:53 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

It makes them grow up to be a pushy cow.
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
Perpetually happy!
Forum moderator Tip Photographer I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Critters Allowed Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Keeps Goats Keeper of Poultry Frogs and Toads Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian
Image
threegardeners
Oct 19, 2011 3:03 PM CST
really? wow....never would of thought of that...you mean like they'll get the way a cat does when they really want their head scratched, pushing on you...except it'd be a hundreds of pounds cow?
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
Oct 19, 2011 5:28 PM CST
I've given up on predicting which calves will become wild cows - except the calves OF wild cows who are generally doomed, but then I don't keep wild cows around very long. I had one twin calf that I brought up on a bottle and it was very tame - until it went out with the herd, after that I couldn't get close to it!
Porkpal

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