March is calving season at Edgar Farms. I thought I would do a pictorial story of a calf’s first few hours of life.
This was taken on March 15,2012. That day we had 7 calves so this was just one of the seven.
This is a first calf heifer meaning this is all new to her. Everything that happen is all instinct on both the cow’s and the calf’s part.
This picture was taken at 7:10 PM. If you look closely you can see two white feet of her calf poking out for the first time.
This picture was taken at 7:25 PM. You can now see the nose of the calf.
This picture was taken at 7:30 PM. Once the head comes out the rest of the calf slides out with only one or two pushes.
This is what a newborn baby calf looks like. He doesn’t look very pretty being soaking wet, having opened his eyes to see the world around him, just being separated from his mother’s umbilical tube, and having to breath all on his own. What a big change in his life, in only one minute!!
This video was taken at 7:35 PM. The calf is now lifting his head and getting his bearings. The background noise is the engine of our quad as we are about to give him a sled ride to the barn.
This video was taken at 7:45 PM. In this video the calf is learning to stand and walk
In this video the calf is learning to walk and look for lunch
This Video was taken at 8:10 PM. The calf is now 40 minutes old and nursing very strongly. If you listen you can hear the calf smacking his lips as he drinks.
This picture was taken the next day at about 3:00 PM. Notice his hair is all dried off and he is actually basking in the sunshine.
Not all calving go this smooth and trouble free. As with anything there is a multitude of things that can and do go wrong, everything from inclement weather, unco-operative mothers, malpresentations. All thing things are just another hurdle we face every day and night during this busy season.