We recently moved our big herd sire, Renaissance, to the show barn to breed the two momma cows and three heifers.
Renaissance seems to enjoy hanging around with the two young calves Peach and Respect. On this day his son Respect, snuggled close to Renaissance and mimicked his dad as they lounged in the sunshine.
If there was a noise, both would turn their heads and stop chewing cud to listen. When Renaissance put his head low to the ground, Respect would do likewise. This went on for about an hour with the two spending quality time together.
I can blame it on a lot of things, the series of storms that has been this winter, the 2 large herds of elk that swoop in and out of the pastures ignoring fences completely, minimal grass growing because of the cooler temps, our preoccupation with the twins and all their needs, or just a sheer lack of wanting to go out in soggy, snowy, cold weather to work on fences. But the bottom line is that our fences are not up to standards and will need a lot of attention.
All this has led to a large problem. Continue reading
Renaissance, the herd sire, likes to spend these cold winter nights down in the woods under tall fir trees. The protection of the trees makes a comfortable setting for him and the three cows that he is currently penned with.
The long walk up to the barn is on ground that has been frozen solid, coated layers of snow and ice, and frozen again on top. Renaissance takes his time walking to barn, avoiding twisting an ankle or displacing a hip.
His lumbering gate continues until he catches up with the cows that are already happily eating in the barn.
After breakfast, he will follow the cows back down to the woods for an afternoon under the trees.
It’s been 2 months since the herd sire, Renaissance, had been moved across the river to hang out with the main herd. The cows and calves seemed to enjoy his company. Many times I would find the bull babysitting several youngsters while lounging around under the big old maple trees while the mothers grazed around the hay fields.
Renaissance is a calm sort of bull. He doesn’t call out or make a lot of noise. He is not one to herd the cows from one area to the next as some bulls do. He is more comfortable just being one in the crowd, although this is getting more difficult all the time because of his size. He towers over the calves and the cows with his head and neck almost twice the size of the rest of the herd.
Over the last two months, Renaissance has lost his curly coat of hair. What has replaced it is very short and he is now a sleek, jet black, mass of muscle.
Now back with the show herd, he is in charge of breeding the late calving cows and the yearling heifers. Since he is now closer to the bull pen, the 3 yearling bulls that are still out there are making adolescent noises to try to get his attention.
It is a good perk to be closer to the house with his latest gig. He is closer to the yard and garden which means he is recipient to grass clippings and trimmings from the garden. He stands in line along the fence with the rest of the show string when the lawn mower is started up. Green chop is a favorite, and the end of the radishes will be pulled up and thrown over the fence as will the overgrown lettuce and the spent pea vines.
This is a current pic of our herd sire. He is a patient fellow. He watches as we do the morning feedings, then at his leisure, moves in and eats his fill.
His first baby, Stormy was born several weeks ago. He is the sire for the whole crop of calves that will be born over the next six months.
KC Renaissance #17861507
Current weight 1400 lbs.
Just like last year, Pretzel is the first cow to birth a calf for the new season. We welcome this sweet little heifer that was born 12/12/2015, she weighed in at 80 lbs., and is the first baby born to our newest herd sire, Renaissance.
Most of the time we name the baby after the mother in an effort to track the bloodlines with easy recall. This time, the Pacific storms that have raged the area for the last two weeks have won out and we decided to name this perky little one ‘Stormy.’
She was all cleaned up by her mother after birth, but the walk to the barn had her very wet and cold. We moved her into a pen with her mom so she would have a chance to dry off. Sitka had her warm, dry and well fed quickly and this new addition to the farm is doing well.