|328 wearing her calf tag. She is on pasture in this picture last summer. 4-5 months old|
|Sorry I didn't get any good pics of the vet ultrasounding the heifers. But this is what the machine looks like.|
With the use of an ultra sound machine our vet is capable of not only detecting if the heifer is pregnant or not but how far along in the pregnancy she is. The machine is very similar to the ones used for humans. The use of ultra sound allows us to evaluate if our breeding program is working like we expect and gives us some marketing options on any of the open (not pregnant) heifers. The heifers are also sprayed with fly spray to help them stay more comfortable as we are getting to the time of year where flys are relentless and given their first scour guard vaccine. We use this vaccine to aid in preventing scours (diarrhea) in our baby calves and we are able to vaccinate the cow and that immunity is passed from mother to baby inside the uterus. We have to give the vaccine twice to cows or heifers who have never received the vaccine before and then they will get a booster every spring before they start calving. These heifers will get their 2nd shot when we vaccinate the cows next spring. We removed the calf tags that the heifers were given 15 months ago at birth and replace them with 2 (1 in each ear) cow tags (larger than the calf tag) which is their new permanent identification number. This 3 digit new number will belong to each heifer as long as she stays in our herd. We put 2 tags in because they tend to loose them sometimes and it gives us a back up tag to make sure we always know who is who. The first digit of the number is the last number in the year the heifer was born. 328 was born in 2010 so her new number is 034. Now the heifers will hang out on another pasture until we get ready to move the main cow herd to cornstalk fields for winter grazing.
Our conception rate goal is 90-95%. This year we had 100% pregnant heifers so they all get to stay on the farm for now. WOOHOO !!!
|001 formerly know as baby 455 is patiently wait to rejoin her friends.|