Mothering Ability ?

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Ky hills
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Ky hills » Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:15 pm

Midtenn wrote:I only have four purebred Charolais but all and I mean ALL of them will walk off grazing in the other direction while I'm tagging their calf who is kicking and bawling. What if I was a coyote or A black headed buzzard, would she still be walking away? I usually wait a few days until I can separate cow and calf in different pens but the other breeds...Angus/brangus and baldies will be right there wanting through the fence.


Used to have registered Charolais, and for the most part except for 3 or 4 you could work with the calves easily, and they would just stand there watching. One year I did have some heifers, that were as you are describing and it didn't end well coyotes got 3 young calves. Have not had those issues thankfully since having Hereford and Angus cows.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Brute 23 » Thu Jan 04, 2018 12:02 am

Lucky y'all have honest neighbors or more calves than that would go missing.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby greybeard » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:28 am

Midtenn wrote:I only have four purebred Charolais but all and I mean ALL of them will walk off grazing in the other direction while I'm tagging their calf who is kicking and bawling. What if I was a coyote or A black headed buzzard, would she still be walking away? I usually wait a few days until I can separate cow and calf in different pens but the other breeds...Angus/brangus and baldies will be right there wanting through the fence.


Might be a case of the mommas just don't see you as a threat. Most of my mommas will let me do anything with their calves except one old horned cow of unknown lineage. She'd kill ya if you get within 150' of her newborn or young calf, but the rest of the time, she's gentle as a lamb. Raises a heck of a calf every year tho and no trouble calving or breeding back.
All my chars are good mommas right from the minute calf hits the grass.

Did have one of the beefmasters that was bad about trying to 'steal' another cow's calf and the 2nd year she did it, she already had her own hanging off her teats. She was one that drowned so I don't have to worry about that anymore I reckon.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Ebenezer » Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:18 am

Hate to be my usual and sound stupid, but you want an intelligent cow that can tell the difference in you and a coyote. Doesn't mean that she will not hide the calf from you, too, but not eat your lunch. Hard to get this with a lot of in and out of bulls, lines, breeds as each brings in the unknown. Like temperament, I count the good type of maternal traits with the genetic effect. Have seen AI sibs be the same oddities over a long period of times (not one year of environmental effects). Bad temperament and poor mothering or aggressive cows are good reason to "tag" a bull or a breed as terminal and ship every calf or toss out the remaining semen.

In keeping calves in the herd to consider as bulls to use: the mother's maternal ability. I have some that should have medals for their ability and the sons are going to continue get their chance around here, no doubt. Trumps most EPDs in my book as it makes my life easier and there are more calves to sell.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Stocker Steve » Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:40 am

Ebenezer wrote:you want an intelligent cow that can tell the difference in you and a coyote. Doesn't mean that she will not hide the calf from you, too, but not eat your lunch. Hard to get this with a lot of in and out of bulls, lines, breeds as each brings in the unknown. Like temperament,


Need a mothering EPD ! :cowboy:
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby dun » Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:53 am

Stocker Steve wrote:
Ebenezer wrote:you want an intelligent cow that can tell the difference in you and a coyote. Doesn't mean that she will not hide the calf from you, too, but not eat your lunch. Hard to get this with a lot of in and out of bulls, lines, breeds as each brings in the unknown. Like temperament,


Need a mothering EPD ! :cowboy:

They sort of have one, it's called (Red Angus) Stayability
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Midtenn » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:53 pm

Ebenezer wrote:Hate to be my usual and sound stupid, but you want an intelligent cow that can tell the difference in you and a coyote.


LOL. I don't have any intelligent cows. They all just go off instinct. Hopefully they stay stupid and don't figure out why we want the calves to grow.
But I do know the 4 Charolais cows mentioned are not protective enough by my standards. Whether its epd's , or chute exit score, or whatever standard you use to judge docility.....mothering ability is directly tied to docility. She can be too docile same as being too wild.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Midtenn » Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:10 pm

Midtenn wrote:
Ebenezer wrote:Hate to be my usual and sound stupid, but you want an intelligent cow that can tell the difference in you and a coyote.


LOL. I don't have any intelligent cows. They all just go off instinct. Hopefully they stay stupid and don't figure out why we want the calves to grow.
But I do know the 4 Charolais cows mentioned are not protective enough by my standards. Whether its epd's , or chute exit score, or whatever standard you use to judge docility.....mothering ability is directly tied to docility. She can be too docile same as being too wild.


You know I spoke too quick on that I think. I do have some very gentle cows of other breeds, walk out of the chute, let you pet them, whatever, but you better not mess with their calves. Kind of like my wife, nicest lady in the world, docility score of 50 or so. But don't mess with her kids!
Maybe docility score has nothing to do with it.....maybe the Charolais of mine are just not good mothers.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby dun » Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:21 pm

The majority of our cows will let us mess with new born calves, will leave them hidden somewhere or leave them with another cow to babysit. The may not like us messing with them and talk about it the whole time but they either leave us alone or will haul azz with the calf to the furthest spot they can find. Used to even leave them with the bull to babysit. Pity anything other then a cow or a person that gets within a couple hundred yards of a calf. If a coyote just runs through the pasture they will all stand there and watch. If it stops he better be putting on his track shoes cause everyone except 1 or 2 babysitters will be all over it. They don;t like deer in the pasture, they run off turkeys and I watched them run off a momma skunk with a couple of babies. If you ain't a cow you don;t belong. If we're around, strangers can walk out among them with no problem. If we aren;t around they get pretty close to the same treatment as any other intruder.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Ebenezer » Fri Jan 05, 2018 6:46 am

Midtenn wrote:
Ebenezer wrote:Hate to be my usual and sound stupid, but you want an intelligent cow that can tell the difference in you and a coyote.


LOL. I don't have any intelligent cows. They all just go off instinct. Hopefully they stay stupid and don't figure out why we want the calves to grow.
But I do know the 4 Charolais cows mentioned are not protective enough by my standards. Whether its epd's , or chute exit score, or whatever standard you use to judge docility.....mothering ability is directly tied to docility. She can be too docile same as being too wild.

Intelligence is not all IQ, even in people. It is gift, knack, skill and INSTINCT. Even as bad a rap as sheep get, they have instincts which allow them to do what sheep do and succeed. Recent research has that even the "dumb sheep" recognizes multiple faces and voices. So, maybe a bad term. Like some folks talk about the personality of their cow or horse while the beast is not a person. Is it docility, animal-ity, but surely not personality! :?
Oddest cow I had one time from a line of nut jobs: cow would calve, see me coming and snort and paw for a few minutes, turn and run off a long ways for just enough time to tag the (first) calf and then come over the hill at top speed with death (mine) on her mind. All calves after got tagged at weaning in the chute! But I saw the same action even from the truck window in other years.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby ddd75 » Fri Jan 05, 2018 7:09 am

i cull for mothering ability. they calve in the field or somewhere.. they need to protect it. I've lost too many calves to moms who don't care.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Brute 23 » Fri Jan 05, 2018 8:11 am

The problem is the high headed, some what flighty ones tend to be the best mother's. You have a chance of acclimating and getting some of those to settle in and be great cows. You have zero chance of teaching a cow mothering ability.
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Re: Mothering Ability ?

Postby Tbrake » Sun Jan 07, 2018 8:35 am

My ai rep through genex told me that most guys have quit using ss chisum up north where there are wolves. He said the chisum daughters were so tame they would not protect the calf. Any truth to this I do not know. I have noticed every one of my chisum daughters will let me tag their calf without a problem. They are close by watching, and I never turn my back on them but so far not one has tried to take me out. Some of the gelbvieh on the other hand, I have to rope the calves and drag them onto the bed of the pickup. More times than I can count I’ve had a momma with 2 front feet up on the bed
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