10 more cattle questions
Q: How many acres do you need for a cow and calf?
A: The acreage required for a cow-calf pair will depend on several things: mainly soil fertility, pasture quality and how much rain you get in your area. For example, most places in Missouri start with 3-4 acres per cow-calf pair for summer grazing.
Q: How much hay do cattle need in the winter?
A: Cows will eat 2% of their body weight in hay per day in the winter. You can figure that you are going to need to feed hay around 150 days per year. If your cow weighs 1,200 pounds, she will need 24 pounds of good quality hay for 150 days. So a good starting point would be to have 3,600 pounds of hay per cow per year.
Q: How many days after giving birth does a cow go into heat?
A: Your cow should start to cycle around 60 days after calving. However, if she is thin, or has a mineral deficiency, then cycling will be delayed, sometimes as long as 120 days.
Q: What are the signs that a cow is about to calve?
A: As cows get close to calving you will notice their udders filling. The closer to calving the fuller their udders are going to get. Right before calving you may notice some milk starting to drip. That is when you know they are very close. You will also notice them moving around a lot, acting restless. In addition, you may notice their intakes go down right before calving. The problem with cows is none of these signs are 100%. We have had cows eating hay, lay down, have the calf, get the calf nursing, and go back to eating hay. In general, the easiest thing to notice is the udder filling and them being restless. Most cows like to hide their calves in the woods for a day or two before bringing up to the barn.
Q: My wife and I are moving to one acre in Arizona, with "high desert" bare land. What type of calf could we raise that we could slaughter after a year or year and a half, that we could freeze and provide us one year supply of meat?
A: I would suggest going to a local sale barn and purchasing an Angus or Angus cross-bred calf. The Angus breed are noted for their high meat quality and are the most popular beef breed so the availability in any area should be good. Living on one acre will not provide enough forage base, however, for the number of animals you described. You will most likely need to feed hay year round and some kind of feed supplement to obtain a reasonable growth rate in order to slaughter in an 18-month timeframe.
Q: What is the gestation period for cows?
A: The average gestation length of a cow is around 247 days. They will calve within plus or minus the 247.
Q: Can you raise and barn pigs together with Holstein cows?
A: Yes, you can raise hogs and cattle in the same barn. You will want them both to have separate pens and feeding equipment, but they can share the same space, without any risk of cross species disease.
Q: When should you vaccinate calves?
A: Calves are usually vaccinated a couple of weeks prior to weaning. This will help them get through the stress of weaning more easily. I suggest you contact your local veterinarian for a recommended vaccination list for your area.
Q: What does it mean when they refer to a #1 beef calf and a #2 beef calf at the auction yard?
A: When calves have a number designation is in relation to their muscling.There are two things that go into grading feeder calves. The first is muscling. It is segmented into 1 - heaviest (typical beef breed calf), 2 - light (typical of dairy breed calves, and 3 - unthrifty. These calves are very thin. The second is frame size. Again, there are 3 categories: large (will finish at greater than 1,250 pounds), medium (finish between 1,000 and 1,250 pounds), and small (finish below 1,000 pounds). At the sale you may hear the auctioneer describe a set of calves as L-1's. That would mean they are heavy muscled calves that will go to market above 1,250 pounds.
Q: Our bull has been standing at the fence bellowing, sounding very distressed. It is beginning to bother the neighbors. Why is he doing this?
A: He is looking for additional females. Most likely all of his cows are bred and he wants everyone, neighbors included, to know he is open for business. If you are the neighbor, it is annoying. If you are the bull owner, it is good thing because all of your cows are bred.
You might like...
Add Your Comment
You must be logged in to leave a comment. Login