90% at three weeks – John van der Goes

JVG estrotectIt’s been nice to have contact from some of the people who read our blogs and hear how much they enjoy them.

Well, what’s been happening here? Firstly, mating has been going really well. It looks like we will hit the 90% at three weeks target; we only need another two cows to go up tomorrow to get there. This year we used Estrotect patches along with tail paint for heat detection. I found them to be very good; the amount of rub on the patch helped a lot with the decision about when to mate (I do my own AB and the cows get inseminated straight after milking, so they need to be well on heat or it will be too early). I first tried them on some of the last AB cows last year and thought then that I would use them for the whole herd this year.

JVG baleage2The first cut of silage has come off the runoff. 90 bales, which I hope will be plenty to cover both the summer and winter for the stock at the runoff, and maybe some for the cows at home. Hopefully we will get another cut to take home to help get the cows through the summer.

All but the last 13 calves have been weaned and they are now down at the runoff. This means daily trips to feed them meal. It’s a bit of a drag, as it takes time out of a day that never seems to have enough hours in it anyway.

The fodder beet is starting to grow (it takes quite a while to get going). I’m checking for weed growth at least once a week as they need to be kept under control or we won’t have a decent crop. Both sowings are now up and you can clearly see the rows. The first paddock sown is starting to look green as the plants get bigger.

JVG fodder beet seedlings3

Meanwhile, the cobwebs on my bikes are getting bigger and more and more plentiful. I have had a few unsuccessful attempts to start riding again, but after one or two something comes up and it all goes out the window. The dust on my kayak is getting thicker. It’s still up in the ceiling of the workshop and doesn’t look like coming down any time soon. On the plus side we have only just over a week to go before we get away for the weekend, but that too has a glitch. We have just realised that we have to herd test on Sunday night, so need to be back for that instead of being able to get home later in the day. Still, that’s how it is, and we have the next weekend off as well so can’t complain too much.

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