Monday, March 31, 2014

In like a Lion - out like a lion.

Well the late March blizzard has arrived.  It didn't start snowing here till after 5 AM, but it really snowed at times.  Weather Service is saying gusts of wind to 62 MPH and temperature of 18 for wind chill of -4 below.
Last Saturday we had a beautiful day with a temperature of 72 degrees.

These calves are all out of our first calf heifers.  These calves are all about two weeks old.  They really enjoy the nice sunshine and warm temperatures.

Tammy and I have been calving our first calvers and have been having pretty good luck.  We have ten left to calve.   We need to send the last ones over to Ryan to finish and we need to get ready to shear the sheep.  This means we have to clean out the barn and scrape the corrals.  It has been hard to do because all the ruts in the mud have remained frozen most of the time.

The cows at Ryan's have been calving right along lately.  Yesterday ahead of the storm he had four cows calve just in the afternoon.  Our cows that are here don't start calving till around April 20.  So this date is creeping up on us.  They calve out in pasture and have to take care of themselves.  The sheep will be in the corrals and occupy the barn, so no cows allowed.

This was the scene outside the barn this morning.  This is the heifers left to calve.

Yesterday there was no snow anywhere.  These heifers had spent the night in the barn so had not been outside very long and got this much snow on their backs.

I have to include one picture of my faithful dog Peaches.  She is patiently waiting for my return to the four wheeler.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Well we had gotten 3 calves before the extremely cold weather last weekend. Luckily the heifers quit calving while the weather was the coldest.  Then they started calving again.  The weather started warming, but slowly during the week.  We plugged along at one calf a day.  With fifty heifers to calf and fifty days to do it in we would get done.  It would just be slow.

Tammy caught these heifers sleeping one night during one of her checks.

On Thursday we moved the bulls to a pasture that is their spring pasture.  There is a shed there and a small springy creek for water that flows most of the year.

The older bulls know where they are going and know it is that time of year to go there.  So they march right along to get there.  Not much fighting and sparring going on.

Then we rode with the four wheelers down to the cows and brought them home to Ryan's.  They will not start calving for two more weeks.  Usually we wait long enough that a calf is born while the cows are in winter pasture.
But this year we brought them home early enough that no calves have been born yet.  We got this done one afternoon while Tammy watched the heifers at our home.
The next day it was colder and had froze the ground and we hauled three loads of heifer calves down to where the cows had come from.  They will be locked in a small lot of about 20 acres.  Hopefully the fence will hold them until they learn their boundaries. Once they figure out where the feed and water and shelter is they will be content and not try to get out.

While I was gone moving heifer calves Tammy was home calving.  That day we had six heifers calve.  All our pens were full as we tried to keep the new mothers and their young babies separate.  Fortunately the next day was to be really nice, so we could start letting some outside.

I have a few black cows and heifers and always like it when the calf they have is red.  So I have to show this to my friends that have black cattle.

The water in the creek has come up in the last few days.  Grand kids were over and we walked down to where the creek is overflowing around the culvert.  I think the ice has plugged the culvert.  So the water is really flowing around causing a water fall.