Monday, February 22, 2010


I'm learning a lot of things about farm life.

This year is our first time with beef cattle. There have been 4 live births (plus one stillbirth) this month. Calves everywhere! Our fields are much cuter now.

But I've been amazed by how many of these first-time mothers reject their calves. They simply don't know what to do with them, so they leave them in the field and go about their busy cud-chewing lives.

When one of the cows gave birth to her first calf, she looked back and actually let out a startled moo and jumped in astonishment as she got her first glimpse of the strange bundle-of-legs lying behind her. Two of the other new mothers have refused to let their calves nurse (sequestering the cow/calf into a small pen, feeding some colostrum, getting the calf to her feet and letting "time run its course" seem to have worked thus far for re-introducing them... but that only works if the poor calf isn't born in the middle of the night when you're not around to save it).

As I watched the latest calf reject on Saturday, I couldn't help but think of the Planned Parenthood clinic they're building in our area. Which reminded me, I hadn't signed up for this Spring's 40 Days for Life. Have you?

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