It's here... It's all here at once. Calving, snow, and cold have all decided to come at the same time! There are now two calves in the Big Trails Beef herd and 4 in the Greet Ranch herd. It's earlier than we had hoped that they would show up, but the big storm brought them on. So far, they are all doing well despite the cold and snow.
Tonight the temperatures are supposed to drop to around zero and stay there through tomorrow and tomorrow night. Hopefully, the rest of the cows carry their babies until after it warms back up. Today brought six inches of fresh snow on top of the snow that we received earlier in the week making a pretty thick layer for calves to trek through.
The new life is wonderful to witness and I really enjoy "calving season" when it goes well. It becomes incredibly stressful when calves get sick or too cold. To help keep them warm, the ranch's heifers are in the corral at the calving shed tonight, as they will spend most of the nights until they calve. They are bedded in fresh straw to keep them warm. We check them at regular intervals in case any of them have problems.
It is an exciting, stressful, tiring, and fun time when the baby calves start to come. I do prefer it when they don't come at the same time as cold and snow, but I can't keep them from coming two weeks before their due date. A week from now, when we post again, I am sure we will be calving in full force, in the heifers anyway (the cows won't start until around the beginning of March). Now this is what I am planning on doing for the next couple of months: feeding and taking care of baby calves. What do you have planned?
by Brandon Greet