Saturday, July 26, 2014

The Red Poll Girls In July

My cows have continued to become more tame and to grow fat, glossy and beautiful. The summer weather and lush pasture have been good for them:

I know they are well fed, not only because they are gaining weight but because they spend such a large proportion of each day lounging around, chewing their cuds. If they were hungry, they'd be grazing:

I have two Box Elders in their pasture, both of which are favorite lounging spots:

Two have now been artificially inseminated. Assuming that both were successful, Violet should be due on March 25 and Gracie on April 13. Amy has not yet been bred and Jasmine is clearly pregnant, due any time before mid-August. Scarlett's condition is unknown, but I'm guessing that she is pregnant:

The other Box Elder, this one behind the barn. It has some low branches which are excellent for scratching an itch:

The cows have been fenced out of the north field, the far south field and even half of their main pasture. This is to allow the vegetation to grow as much as possible before they are hayed:

The girls, standing around the water cooler and exchanging gossip:

And lazing beneath the Box Elder:

Their water consumption has been so high that I have taken to filling the 110 gallon stock tank 5 or 6 times per day. It is completely dry every morning and I keep checking for leaks but have found none. I estimate that the 5 cows are drinking 300 gallons per day. I expect that to increase when they are producing milk:

See how thin they look in this picture? This is an example of how a photo can be deceiving. It depends on the angle and the lighting:

The artificial inseminator man remarked that he'd never seen such a close-knit group of cows. They are seldom more than two feet away from each other. I asked if it might be because they are such a small herd but he thought it might be a breed characteristic of Red Polls:

Scarlett is on the left, and she surely looks pregnant in this picture. Jasmine is on the right and looks less pregnant, though she's enormous when standing. I hope that I'll be posting calf photos before long:

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