The Drama of Calving Season

Watching our mama cows calve has been equal parts joyful and nerve-wracking. Our first calf miraculously appeared in our pasture one evening while I was picking strawberries. No anxiety necessary. Our second calf arrived this morning and, fortunately or unfortunately, we discovered the cow was in labor fairly early on. Being new to this, watching a cow give birth is a bit like watching the Discovery Channel while simultaneous trying to decide if the birthing process is moving fast enough. Do we need to help her? Is the calf going to be okay? Should we have separated her from the other cattle? Are all questions that rapid fired through my mind as we watched the birth. Fortunately, neighborly wisdom from our experienced next door farmer helped us to step back and give the cow some space. Within moments, a beautiful new calf was born, entirely ebony in color with a sweet wet nose and clumsy oversized legs. Within minutes, we were worrying about other questions, “When will the baby stand?” “Will it get to its mama’s milk in the first two hours?” All worries that were neatly dealt with by mama’s perfect mothering instincts. Whew! Our cow mamas are baby birthing champs. Only 6 more to go.

 

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