Redneck Hillbilly Search

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Calf Run

We put up a temporary stretch of electric fencing to create a small calf run for the spring calves. The four of them have been cramped up in the little calf pen for a while now, and it was time to let them stretch their legs a little bit. In their new space they can get accustomed to their new feeding bins and water trough, as well as learn respect for the little yellow wires that border our property on all sides.

I uploaded a video of them discovering the fence and our first 5 star rating and comment came from a fellow who thought we'd be getting a whole pile of hateful comments because of it. So far, so good though. No PETA peeps, no vegetarians, no cruelty to animals type people who don't understand the  reasons for electric fencing and spout off in ignorance. As of today, we have 5 five star ratings so apparently people watching the video understand.

Our first year raising calves we had aging rusty barbwire fencing around the perimeter - and our fencebreaking angus broke through it repeatedly. We've now replaced 95% of our fencing with pagewire, with a barbed wire top strand, and a single line of electric fencing.

Just for the record: we raise our calves as humanely as possible. Yes, in the end they share the same fate as those who are stuffed into feedlots and treated badly - that's a given. But we spare them any unneccesary pain. We don't keep them for three years so alot of the usual and standard treatments are unnecessary. . Dehorning is not necessary - partly because three of them are angus X's and therefore polled (no horns) and the male holstein will only have small nubs come butchering time.

So anyways, as I was saying before I went off on a tangent - we put up some electric fencing, and the cows love it. One afternoon with a few shocks was all it took for them to realize they had boundaries. They are happily eating from their feed bins, and love the new fresh water source. Milk feedings will continue for another week and a half or so, then they'll be vaccinated and let loose on the field to grow up into big, tasty veal. :D