July 25, 2020 – A New Calf is Born

Today Ninja, our Angus cross beef cow, calved (or gave birth) to a big healthy bull calf.

She was bred to a Brahma bull that has been dead for many years.

He won the 2nd annual Houston Livestock Show in 1980.

How in the world did we breed out cow to a bull that is over 40 years old?

The answer is frozen semen. Bull semen is collected, prepared, and stored in tiny straws. Those straws are stored in a tank of liquid nitrogen. When the cow is ready to ovulate, we thaw the semen and breed the cow. This is known as “Artificial Insemination” or AI for short.

Here is the semen straw that we used:

Today we can choose the best genetics for our herds.

We can even freeze embryos and put them in different cows so we can get more than one calf per year.

Gestation length of a cow is about the same as a person: 283 days.

Here is our new bull calf at 24 hours old. The mama cow is going after a dog.

My daughter wanted to show this calf in 4-H as a commercial heifer. However, it is a bull. We may decide to keep him intact and use him as a herd bull.

We will see how he comes along.

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