We are trying something different this year.
Usually weaning time comes around and we separate the mommas and the calves. We listen to them ball for each other. It always makes me so sad. I know, I’m a sap. Billy (my hubby) reminds me it’d be much worse if they were never separated. Both animals would suffer like an adult child that never leaves home.
About ten days ago, we brought the cattle in and put these nose clips in the calves. This way the calves stay with their mothers, but are unable to nurse any longer. Studies show reduced stress in weaning. Then you separate them after they are no longer nursing. We thought we’d try it and see if it affected their weaning weight and/or rate of gain.
They certainly didn’t appear to be distraught with the clips. We didn’t notice any changes in behavior. The mother cows were glad to see their calves–there hasn’t been the stress on the mothers either.
Tomorrow we take the clips out and we’ll see how it worked. Nothings like trying new things!