We’ve been in the market for a bull this year. After planning to A.I. (artificially inseminate) the girls, then not, and then again planning to. When we finally were able to get a hold of the vet and get the process started, I’m not sure what happened but we haven’t heard back from him in a few weeks again and have given up on that for the time being. All the while we have been looking for a bull of our own.
Everyone we talk to that uses A.I. on their cows also has a bull to take care of the ones that the A.I. didn’t take. I’m not a fan of that method to begin with and then when you add all the costs that go with it, it’s rather expensive. You go through the whole process and still have a decent chance that it won’t work and you will need a bull anyway. I don’t understand why I would go through all that when having a bull on site will do the same thing?
I’ve asked that question a few times and the answer is always the same. “You A.I. with semen from a high quality bull, and then have a lower quality bull for “clean up””.
Huh. Well that’s somethin’.
From what I figure… in my head without too many numbers… the cost for the vet, the shots to put them into heat, the straws (which depending on what bloodline you want, start at $25 and go past $100 each, and have a 5 straw minimum), figure two straws per cow-times how many cows, it can get rather pricey. Now go through all that and some don’t take. So, you either, buy or rent a bull to have the girls impregnated the old fashioned way. Wouldn’t it make more sense to just buy a quality bull right off the bat and not have to mess around with all the rest? We are already doing cow chores daily so adding another mouth over the fence isn’t that bad in the scope of things. The only hay problem we have is we either need to find someone to buy some or we need to get a few more cows to eat it (and the second cutting is getting baled tomorrow).
After some looking we found one near by, affordable and looked like a good quality animal. We were all set to pick him up and the farmer called to say we couldn’t take him because of another deal he had going and a misunderstanding with that guy. He felt really bad to have to back out. He offered us one of his bull calves instead, it was a deal. We were able to bring the girls down to my uncle’s and put them in with his bull this year.
Using a borrowed truck and trailer we packed up early that morning and headed farther into the country to a little farm not too far from ours. The farmer met us at the barn where he had this years calves penned up for easier catching. The way it sounded they were all going to be sold that day. We got first pick. Talk about cute! I was hoping for the red, horned one, Mike wanted the dun without horns. We got the dun. I named him.
G.W. McLintock. If you haven’t seen the movie, I’m not sure we can be friends… Well maybe. My grandpa was a fan of John Wayne and old western movies. That, McLintock, is one of my favorites. The little guy will have to grow into the name.
When we first were discussing getting the calf as opposed to finding another bull neither of us were too excited about the idea. After a little thought I was quite happy it worked out the way it did. He has only been “home” for a few days and he is already quite friendly. He is learning what a halter is and let me tell ya’, it is so nice to work with a critter that small.
This little 1/2 pint is doing great!