The Wait is Over…

It’s a heifer!

It’s official. We have a beautiful new heifer calf.

She was born just after midnight on June 11.

At 1:07 am, this is what I found.

Here is a video of Autumn cleaning her calf.

You should never interfere with this process for two primary reasons:

1. It’s can be dangerous. Momma cows are very protective of their newborn calves and in order to keep predators from attacking, they will charge any creature that approaches the calf. Even sweet, gentle 4-H cows will do this. It’s instinctive behavior.

2. It is part of the bonding process between mom and baby. If you jump in and clean the calf, the mom may reject it, or the calf may not come when called by the cow. This is a dangerous behavior and can cause many problems.

At 6 am, they are well-bonded and the calf is nursing that vital first milk, known as colostrum. (I have an entire post about the importance of colostrum.)

As you can see, this 8 yr old Jersey cow will produce much more milk than this little girl can drink. Tomorrow I will go to a friend’s dairy farm to pick up a second calf to help drink the milk, therefore preventing mastitis.

Just a few more pictures because Jerseys are so sweet!

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