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Kim Jo Bliss - Moo's From The Herd

Spring definitely in the air these days

The longer daylight hours and the sun shining certainly makes us all feel good!

I really love the cooler nights and sunny days-it makes for a bit less mud in the yard. Mind you, my dad hauled in some hay for me the other day and it created a “soupy mess.”

Luckily, “Roxee” is such a princess that she doesn't really like getting dirty so she does her best to walk around anything too wet.

I'm back to work at EARS

Monday was the first day for 2017 at the Emo Agricultural Research Station (my time off always goes so quickly).

I had plans to get caught up on the stack of farm magazines that I subscribe to. That didn't happen, though at least I can shut the door of the desk I store them in.

I will try hard to continue leafing through them as they often lead me into a direction of a trial that we might like to see done at EARS.

We pretty much have a clean slate since the place was worked up last fall. It almost intimidates me (I think it is because I am getting old).

Temperature swings hard on calves

I'm sure you all will know how I feel about the wet weather we were experiencing Monday. We sure don't need the rain.

I was really hoping we would miss it.

The temperature was mild enough but it sounds like we are in for a cold snap—and rather quickly, too.

These fluctuations are what worry me with young calves. I have treated a few for scours and fortunately they seem to be responding well to the treatment, so that makes things a bit less stressful.

Time certainly ticks away

Well, February is now a wrap. Time certainly ticks away.

The last couple of weeks, I haven't been real sure of what day it is anyway. I'm starting to look forward to more normal sleep, though that likely won't happen for another week or so.

I've been really watching the calves closely for scours since our weather wasn't the greatest for young calves last week (it takes a few days to see the effects).

It can be a very frustrating to work hard getting them on the ground, only to end up with a bunch of sick calves.

Mild weather only a dress rehearsal

I had a busy week of calves (on the top day I had seven arrive). That happened to correspond with Canada Agriculture Day, which I celebrated by bringing more beef into the world.

I guess it was good that it was warm since I had to recycle them through the barn rather quickly. But it isn't easy keeping them dry on a day like that.

I only have two heifers (first-year calvers) left, though they can be a bit more of a worry since it is their first time.

Most of the calves have been lower birth weights but that is OK-they can grow now instead.

Calving season causing some stress

Well, my cows caused me some stress earlier this week.

I noticed a cow was acting like she was going to calve around 4 p.m. on Sunday, so I went and put her in the barn (I wasn't worried as it was her third calf).

She also was the cow that wasn't feeling well last fall, so I was just pleased that she made it through whatever she had going on and was calving.

I left her for an hour, then looked on the camera and could see a water bag. All good. I decided to venture to the barn anyway because I'm still having issues with no Internet in the barn.

My first 'baby' of 2017 has arrived

As I was changing my cows to leave for the 4-H leaders' annual meeting Friday night, I glanced up at the barn camera and noticed I had a heifer calving.

My mom had arrived to pick me up but I told her to go on without me as I fully expected it to take most of the evening with this being her first one and all.

But it was only about half-an-hour later that my first baby of 2017 arrived: a cute little heifer and her momma loved her instantly. It was great!

So I'm officially started and waiting for the next one to arrive.

Cows due to calve soon

I finally started to feel better by the end of the week and I moved my cows into the yard. They are due to calve next week but some are starting to show a lot of sign, so it is nice having them close and easy to inspect.

I was lucky to get a load of fines from the Barwick mill for the calving yard and the cows are absolutely loving them.

Thanks so much to Norbord!

  • • •

I finally think my hydrops cow is coming around. I actually ended up drenching her with some rumen enzymes from another cow in hopes of kick-starting her rumen.

Nasty 'flu bug has hit me hard

There hasn't been many columns that I haven't started off with my view on the weather. And once again, this weather is terrible.

I planned to move my cattle into the calving yard but it is a giant swimming hole right now.

I don't believe this weather is healthy for any of us. As I'm writing this, it is Day 2 for me of bed/bathroom time. I have been hit with a nasty 'flu bug and though my trips to the bathroom are fewer, if I stand too long, I am so dizzy that I feel uneasy.

Cow needed inducing

It looks as though we are going to have a nice week of weather.

I am hoping the current forecast of rain for Saturday is wrong, but I’m certain things will change by then.

It will be a great week to take down my Christmas lights. But from the stuff that I have gathered up already, most of the extension cords likely will have to stay until spring now since they’re under about four feet of snow.

The yard will be dark again—and I’m sure Hydro One will be disappointed.