Jersey heifer calves

For the dairy folks and/or beef folks with questions about udders, milk and mastitis.
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hillsdown
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby hillsdown » Thu Jul 07, 2011 12:54 pm

Where's the pics Valerie ? I am really looking forward to seeing your babies. Especially your new addition . :D
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby vclavin » Thu Jul 07, 2011 1:46 pm

regolith wrote:There's a whole range of temperament in Jerseys - but some heifers will play up when you start milking them then settle down after a few days. Unless one is really vicious, I don't think there's any farmers who would cull them without giving them time to learn the routine first. A bad starter might never be a problem once she's accustomed to the dairying life.
Some cows with a nervous/high temperament never seem to get completely over it but they can fit into the herd with a bit of care - handling them quietly, never splitting them out alone, never getting into an enclosed space with that particular cow.

I'll cull or sell on temperament just because it makes my life easier not to have nervous animals in the herd. And it's genetic, so I don't want her heifer calves either.


Thanks for the insight, I wondered if dairy animals were culled same as beef animals. I suppose the main reason for wanting to know was the answer I alway get when I ask the question "What is the meanest bull you've ever known" and the answer - with no hesitation - is always "Jersey". Guess I couldn't help but wonder if you could cull for temperament for them as well?
Valerie
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby vclavin » Thu Jul 07, 2011 1:48 pm

hillsdown wrote:Where's the pics Valerie ? I am really looking forward to seeing your babies. Especially your new addition . :D

Working on it Hillsdown. Raining this morning and wouldn't yoy know it, I forgot to put my IPhone in my pocket yesterday evening... missed a good pic of hubby feeding the bottles to 2 at once, I have warned him on how hard they butt those bottles and to be sure where "not" to hold the end of that bottle - lol.
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby vclavin » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:31 pm

Image
Image
THis is Bambi.. slight attitude..stubborn lol

Image
Here's Honey, although larger she is the youngest. She alsohas the sweetest disposition.
Very quickly allowed the lead rope and being lead was piece of cake.

Image
Latest aquisition...Fawn.

I think they are pretty skinny and as Fawn is the newest she is the skinniest of the three.
Your thoughts?
Valerie
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby hillsdown » Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:19 pm

They are not skinny ,just do not have much muscle which I think is par for the breed. They are cute though . :)

Juts keep on doing what you are doing, make sure they also are eating their dairy ration calf starter as well as roughage. Also you should be increasing their milk intake gradually so they get at least 6 pints twice a day (they should be getting this at around 1 month of age and for at least another month before decreasing the milk). Another thing I do, but you have to really be careful, is make their milk stronger than the label suggests that way they get a higher concentration in lower volume. Sounds like they are ready for milk if they drink another full bottle of water after each feeding. I would try feeding the older ones 3 pints in the morning ,2 pints in the afternoon and then another 3 in the evening.

I have had calves here that were really hard to get on calf starter and when that happens you have to keep feeding them more milk and for longer.

Thanks for the pics, you have a nice set up there.
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby vclavin » Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:42 pm

hillsdown wrote:They are not skinny ,just do not have much muscle which I think is par for the breed. They are cute though . :)

Juts keep on doing what you are doing, make sure they also are eating their dairy ration calf starter as well as roughage. Also you should be increasing their milk intake gradually so they get at least 6 pints twice a day (they should be getting this at around 1 month of age and for at least another month before decreasing the milk). Another thing I do, but you have to really be careful, is make their milk stronger than the label suggests that way they get a higher concentration in lower volume. Sounds like they are ready for milk if they drink another full bottle of water after each feeding. I would try feeding the older ones 3 pints in the morning ,2 pints in the afternoon and then another 3 in the evening.

I have had calves here that were really hard to get on calf starter and when that happens you have to keep feeding them more milk and for longer.

Thanks for the pics, you have a nice set up there.

Thanks Hillsdown,
All three are getting 3 pints morning and evening... I'm putting 1/2 measuring cups milkreplacer in 3 pints water (bags says that much with 4 pints water). They are eating, together , about 2 1/2 lbs of the feed I have for the cows but is ground up fine for chickens. I add a little xtra soybean meal and a handfull of calfmanna. They seem to like it and I put it along the fence where they walk every day after each bottle. They are curious and sure enough, they found it and started nibbling it. They also ahve a large area of grass and clover to munch on. There's 2 molasses tubs full of water, 1 in the shade and 1 in the sun... they seem to prefer the warm water over the cool water. Left the cool one just in case .. one of these days. There's a little straw under the shade trees and a flake of hay to check out, so far, they kinda nibble the hay but prefer the ground feed and grass.
I'm glad you don't think they are skinny... they worried me..I have to admit that after a week or so of being on our farm they are much, much better at butting the bottle right out of you hands!! LOL.
They do not butt that bottle so hard at first.
I think it may be hard to sell them when they are 2!
Valerie
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby vclavin » Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:44 pm

HIllsdown,
FOrgot to ask, if I feed the older ones more milk in the afternoon, won't that make it harder to get
them to eat grain? (I also started to add a few oats to their ground feed... they like oats!)
Valerie
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby hillsdown » Sat Jul 09, 2011 3:31 pm

Maybe the first couple of days but wouldn't worry about it as they are growing. Mine always liked extra beet pulp pellets and that pink energy ration pellet that the fresh cows got in their TMR, smelt like cotton candy. Was tempted to try them myself but never submitted. :lol:
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby alisonb » Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:08 am

Valerie, those little girls are going to creep into your heart if they haven't already :D . Have you managed to dehorn them yet?
BTW - I hope you and hubby drink a lot of milk..... :P
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby vclavin » Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:45 am

alisonb wrote:Valerie, those little girls are going to creep into your heart if they haven't already :D . Have you managed to dehorn them yet?
BTW - I hope you and hubby drink a lot of milk..... :P

Yes Alison, we LOVE to drink milk.. can't wait to have my own and the neighbors are eager as well -lol. I don't know if Missouri requires the milk to be pasturized in order to sell it. Are there tests that they need to have done when the time comes to keep the milk?
Not dehorned yet, just now able to kinda feel them nubs and girls are rubbing their heads so they must be feeling them trying to burst threw the skin. Plan to talk to vet on Monday.
And yup, they have creeped into both are hearts - especially Honey who has been named perfectly!!
I'm getting them used to being lead away from that blue gate after feeding hoping it will make it easer to break them to lead. We only go about 10 feet from the gate with LOTS of PRAISE and then unleash them. Bambi is just now letting me lead her but the last two days Fawn has been uncooperative. Honey always leads.
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby regolith » Sun Jul 10, 2011 1:06 pm

valerie - put that feed in a container of some sort if you can find one suitable. There'll be less wastage that way and less risk of contamination (faecal and soil). A large bucket, or drum cut in half, or there's all sorts of troughs you could make/construct depending what materials are to hand.

Honey looks like she'll develop into a real nice dairy cow.
The most important check you can make when you start milking is just take a squirt of milk from each teat before every milking - if it's white and clean with no 'bits' it's good to go. Subclinical mastitis can be tested for on farm and there will be a lab close by who can test samples if need be. They'll be able to ascertain that the premises/handling is clean enough. But that's a long time into the future - do you think you'll get a milking machine for them?

Beet pulp pellets taste real good hillsdown. Real good. So does toasted flaked maize drizzled with molasses.
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby vclavin » Sun Jul 10, 2011 10:09 pm

regolith wrote:valerie - put that feed in a container of some sort if you can find one suitable. There'll be less wastage that way and less risk of contamination (faecal and soil). A large bucket, or drum cut in half, or there's all sorts of troughs you could make/construct depending what materials are to hand.

Honey looks like she'll develop into a real nice dairy cow.
The most important check you can make when you start milking is just take a squirt of milk from each teat before every milking - if it's white and clean with no 'bits' it's good to go. Subclinical mastitis can be tested for on farm and there will be a lab close by who can test samples if need be. They'll be able to ascertain that the premises/handling is clean enough. But that's a long time into the future - do you think you'll get a milking machine for them?

Beet pulp pellets taste real good hillsdown. Real good. So does toasted flaked maize drizzled with molasses.

I should have explained that the feed is in rubber tubs along the fence. Actually up against the fence. I noticed them walking that way every day after their bottle so I figured they would check it out. Sure enough, they saw the chickens reaching thru the fence to get some and they soon did so themselves.
Thanks.
Valerie
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby MF135 » Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:40 pm

Those calves are plenty big enough to just drink the milk out of a rubber trough. With 2 calves its so easy. Get you a funnel and a 1 gallon milk jug. Funnel the replacer into the jug and fill it the rest of the way up with water. Shake it up as your walking out there and pour it in. Try putting a lb of textured feed in the trough and then pour the milk over it. They will love it and this will get them on feed quick. I've weaned calves off milk replacer as early as 5 weeks doing this method. The sooner you can get them on feed, minimum 2 lbs/day each, the better the calf will turn out.
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby regolith » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:58 am

That's great Valerie. I just presumed 'along the fenceline' meant on the ground which can be a bit risky for coccidiosis particularly, if it's on the farm.

I'm a-thinking MF135 should give us his guess on what those babies weigh.

Found another premature Jersey calf today - not the greatest start to calving this year. This one wouldn't have been more than 10 kg and I thought it had to be a full month early, though it had a full coat. Went and checked and... fifteen days from now he was due. He weighed next to nothing.
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Re: Jersey heifer calves

Postby MF135 » Mon Jul 11, 2011 1:27 am

regolith wrote:That's great Valerie. I just presumed 'along the fenceline' meant on the ground which can be a bit risky for coccidiosis particularly, if it's on the farm.

I'm a-thinking MF135 should give us his guess on what those babies weigh.

Found another premature Jersey calf today - not the greatest start to calving this year. This one wouldn't have been more than 10 kg and I thought it had to be a full month early, though it had a full coat. Went and checked and... fifteen days from now he was due. He weighed next to nothing.


She said she was feeding 6 pints a day. Recommended for 100lb calf is 8pints. Those calves are closer to 50lbs than 75. The bottom calf Prolly closer to 45. I've had 3 day old calves drinking milk. No need for a bottle.
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