I called my nephew today and asked him who’s idea it was to calve in March. You might remember I told you that Norma Jean could calve March 5th if she were bred the day she was put in with the bull. A week ago, I didn’t think she looked too close (that’s when all these pictures are from). I thought she might wait until closer to the end of the month.
I think it was wishful thinking. Looking at her today, I wouldn’t be surprised if she calved at any time. I am really hoping she waits at least until next week because we are stupid cold again. She might. It’s hard to tell with heifers, and especially when their udders don’t drop as much in the cold.
My brother-in-law already had one of the heifers calve, and they lost the calf because of the cold. In these temperatures, you only have about an hour to get it dried off. We have record-breaking cold again tonight. They’re saying about -20*F/-28.9*C real temperatures by morning.
My nephew told me that a farmer a few miles from us was trying to keep his calves from freezing their ears because he sells them as breeding stock and he thinks they sell better if they don’t have short ears. He’s putting stocking caps on their ears and tying them on with pantyhose. He also froze his hand to the calf puller when he was helping deliver one. It’s just stupid cold.
It’s crazy. These temperatures are about 35* below our historical averages. Usuallly, it’s pretty safe to have them calve in March. I’ve told Norma Jean to keep her tail down and her legs crossed for another week. I also asked my nephew to check her during the day when I’m at work and told my son to check her every time he drives by. I’ll be checking her quite frequently too. With any luck, this will all turn out okay.