Sunday, July 12, 2015

It's A Boy!

You may recall that wide-bodied Jasmine had everyone believing she was pregnant last summer, only to come into heat in late September. I had her artificially inseminated, but she seemed to be fooling me again this year. She grew even wider than usual and her udder began to fill with milk - but no baby. Finally, a full 21 days late, I discovered her out beneath a tree with a newly born calf:

She'd cleaned the little thing off and it was dry:

But it looked very to me to be a recent event. Jasmine's afterbirth was shimmering on the ground behind her and the little calf struggled to get to its feet, likely for the very first time. It was fun, watching it figure out how to stand:

It was not as obvious as one might suppose, but after looking, I pronounced the new calf a male and named him Merlin:

Merlin wobbled around his mom, but she didn't stand up. That worried me a little:

But finally she stood up and began eating the afterbirth. That, to most of us humans, is a yucky sight, but it's nature's way and would help her replenish vital nutrients and get her hormones kick-started:

I didn't want to upset her by getting too close to the little guy, so I used my zoom lens to get a better look:

The next morning brought lovely weather - cool, sunny and breezy. Jasmine and Merlin had by then joined the rest of the herd in the big pasture:

I watched, snapping photos, as Rosella approached tentatively:

Soon Rosella, ever the ham, was blocking my view and trying to get all the attention. She even got Jasmine to lick her. I had to walk around them to take pictures at a different angle:

Merlin is a purebred Red Poll bull calf from two distinguished lines, so I plan to treat him as a future breeding bull. I expect that someone will want him to add productivity and beauty to their herd:

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations on the baby boy! It's sweet to read that you'll keep him for a while.