My last cow just calved a couple of days ago, almost six weeks after her nearest counterpart.
Calving lasted exactly 12 weeks start to finish excluding this last girl, unfortunately she’s going to mess up my figures slightly. My breeding season officially ends at the end of April, normally most cows are severed well before.
As soon as they go to grass the bull does the work and for pure simplicity, he gets to stay with the herd all summer. It’s just easier than taking him away and keeping him on his own in a shed - it never seems fair.
I’m usually lucky enough in the fact that late calving cows don’t tend to be a problem. If I do have cows that turn out too late for my system, I just sell them at the back end of the year.
This cow however, I just couldn’t bring myself to sell, she’s a really nice well-made Simmental - Simmental x Limousin x Charolais to be exact - with just the tiniest bit of Friesian thrown in for good measure.
Nicely marked, good end and great bone. Now that she’s calved, I’m kind of left wondering, what do I do now? If I’m going to keep her in the herd I need to try and pull her next calving date back by at least a month, never an easy task and sometimes an impossible one.
Or do I let her slip and not bull her until January next year, something that never sits well with me although I have done in the past.
Or do I try and sell her to a spring calving man? The cow is almost five stars across the board, she has a Euro value of €177, a carcass weight figure of 27.6kg, and a daughter’s milk figure of 12.9kg.
So any of you who pay much heed to figures will understand that it would pain me to sell her, even though with a good Charolais heifer calf at foot, she is worth a few pound.
It would be the simplest and probably the most sensible thing to do but I think I need more time to come to terms with that possibility - only joking.
Almost all lambs/hoggets have now been slaughtered, who ever thought we’d be seeing prices well in excess of €7/kg. It’ll be interesting to see how things hold up when the spring lamb starts to come out but I for one am not complaining at the minute.