new videos
hot off the press!  
    more about rocket
mass heaters here.

more videos from
the PDC here.
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

My Wife Bought a Calf...  RSS feed

 
Travis Johnson
pollinator
Posts: 1193
126
books cat chicken duck rabbit transportation trees woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Yes my wife went behind my back and agreed to buy a friends calf off her. I was not really that upset, it is just that we are a commercial sheep farm and my last foray into beef did not go so well with cows and sheep grazing the same pastures. I won't do that again!

This is a a Jersey, cut of course as a Jersey Bull is incredibly mean, but anyway, here is the appropriately named Jersey: Brisket.

DSCN4655.JPG
[Thumbnail for DSCN4655.JPG]
 
wayne fajkus
Posts: 718
11
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What were the problems with putting them in same pasture?
 
David Livingston
steward
Posts: 3475
Location: Anjou ,France
163
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Wish my partner would do things like that, she just buys flowers for me
 
Travis Johnson
pollinator
Posts: 1193
126
books cat chicken duck rabbit transportation trees woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
wayne fajkus wrote:What were the problems with putting them in same pasture?


Being grass fed only they were very tough and did not taste great. They also liked to chase my sheep for fun, not only reducing their overall weight, but reducing the weight on my sheep. This also caused undo stress. They also liked to rub on my fences and being woven wire, they often destroyed large sections of it. It was the last reason that really got my dander up; a $350 cow or a $37,000 fence? They went to the slaughterhouse at age 14 months on that one.

But you live and learn to. I would have never known these things if I had not tried it. As Gabe Brown says, he likes to fail at a few things every year because it means he is learning.
 
Travis Johnson
pollinator
Posts: 1193
126
books cat chicken duck rabbit transportation trees woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
David Livingston wrote:Wish my partner would do things like that, she just buys flowers for me


That is not a bad thing, at least she is showing you she loves you.

As a side note, right now the prices on dairy cow breeds are really down. A dairy farmer, after paying the beef check off, the transportation, and auction fees are getting about $10 per bull calf. With milk replacer costing $75 for a 50 pound bag they cannot afford to even keep bull calfs. It also increases workload for them, so they are motivated to sell them to local homesteaders. Around here this is very common, but I live in dairy farm country. I paid $50 for this one, and dairy cow breeds are nothing to shy away from. In beef test testing, Jersey won 8 years in a row on taste. It is not that these cows taste horrible...they don't...it is just being dairy cows breeds they have more bone structure and but on weight slower, what cattlemen call "conversion", as the conversion from grass to weight. But taste, they have that. They marble their meat well.

The key to good tasting beef is getting that fat marbled through the muscle, and making sure it is healthy. A rally healthy cow tastes great. I know because I was raised on a dairy farm and always ate the sick cow tat were on their way out. Yuck!

So if there is a dairy farm nearby, stop and ask for one of their bull calfs. I am 99% they would sell you it cheap, and in getting to know a person, would set aside a really good one. Dairy farmers are great people, love their animals and love to help others.
 
Dave Dahlsrud
Posts: 503
Location: North-Central Idaho, 4100 ft elev., 24 in precip
26
books food preservation fungi hugelkultur trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
So what's your plan for grazing this little guy Travis?  Are you going to paddock shift him with some electric wire or just put him out in his own big pasture?
 
Travis Johnson
pollinator
Posts: 1193
126
books cat chicken duck rabbit transportation trees woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Dave Dahlsrud wrote:So what's your plan for grazing this little guy Travis?  Are you going to paddock shift him with some electric wire or just put him out in his own big pasture?


No, I will just keep him in a pen in the barn and feed him silage. That will keep him from getting tough since he won't be running around putting muscle on, and the silage will add to his taste. This is for my family only and not for sale so we want the best tasting meat that we can get.
 
David Livingston
steward
Posts: 3475
Location: Anjou ,France
163
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Unfortunately it's not so easy to buy an animal in the Eu as paper work is involved big time like you have no idea oh well it comes along with free health care for humans so I should not complain about the system .
Yesterday we had some visitors 4 calves very sweet ,unfortunately they came with their mothers not so sweet . Ate half my spring broccoli and destroyed two of my grafted fruit trees and a flowering bush trampled. I am learning some new French swearwords and will be trying them out on my neighbour

David
 
Dave Dahlsrud
Posts: 503
Location: North-Central Idaho, 4100 ft elev., 24 in precip
26
books food preservation fungi hugelkultur trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Travis Johnson wrote:
Dave Dahlsrud wrote:So what's your plan for grazing this little guy Travis?  Are you going to paddock shift him with some electric wire or just put him out in his own big pasture?


No, I will just keep him in a pen in the barn and feed him silage. That will keep him from getting tough since he won't be running around putting muscle on, and the silage will add to his taste. This is for my family only and not for sale so we want the best tasting meat that we can get.


Sounds kinda veal-esque!  Let us know how that turns out for you guys, what kind of costs, etc you run into....
 
Travis Johnson
pollinator
Posts: 1193
126
books cat chicken duck rabbit transportation trees woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
The only thing we have run into so far is some pink eye, not that uncommon coming from a dairy farm where they were over-run with newborn calfs. They had 3 to a pen and why the owner was trying to unload them. But we put some Tobradex on them last night (a trick we learned with lambs) and it cleared right up overnight.

I am looking at buying more sheep right now, and got most of my farm expenses down to accurate numbers, but veterinary needs is a tough one for me. I know I could do better health wise for the sheep with more vet visits, vaccinations and whatnot, but at one point do I simply say, doting on them would only cost more and not reduce mortality? But even something like Tobradex, it has a cost, but since it is spread out over so many animals, how can you really calculate its cost?

I am having a new vet service come out soon I hope and set up a new sheep program, and I hope to get a cost estimate of what vet care will be per month or year.
 
Wes Hunter
Posts: 271
Location: Missouri Ozarks
18
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
You could veal him.  Six to eight months or so, actively growing, on milk (or replacer) and grass.  Tasty, tender meat.  And too small to tear up your fencing!
 
I have always wanted to have a neighbor just like you - Fred Rogers. Tiny ad:
2017 Rocket Mass Heater Workshop Jamboree - 15 workshops in one event
https://permies.com/wiki/63312/permaculture-projects/Rocket-Mass-Heater-Workshop-Jamboree
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!