Uprooted Magnolia

ready, set, Calve!

Posted in Calving, Nature, Photography by leahyetter on March 12, 2012

The babies are landing, the babies are landing!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

But it’s not all sunshine and roses. We had to pull 2 calves in a 12 hour period this weekend.
And it’s only the beginning.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

On Saturday night, a cow was bawling around the meadow for a couple of hours but couldn’t have her calf. Patrick got her in the calving barn and could feel that the little one had not entered the birth canal. She needed assistance because it was definitely time. We put on shoulder high gloves and helped the calf enter the world. Now, I have only attended this procedure one time before but this time I had to help. It was breathtaking and nerve-wracking. The cow took to her calf and they are fine and in the meadow with the others.

©Leah Yetter Photographer

Then Sunday morning we had a heifer trying to calve but was having a hard time. We got her in the calving barn and this one was much more difficult. Being a first time mom, she didn’t know what was happening. All she knew was that her belly hurt and these people are strapping hardware to her rear-end. The calf finally entered the world and it took a little while to get it breathing. The heifer didn’t know what to do with this thing lying on the barn floor so we left her alone. I peeked through the window a few minutes later and saw that she had finally gone over to it and was licking it clean. GOOD sign. But when we went back a couple hours later, the calf had not sucked. NOT GOOD. Patrick milked the heifer and we bottle fed the calf to get it through the night. Momma was a kicker and we think she was kicking it off of her milk bag. Finally this morning, there are signs it sucked and the heifer is being VERY protective. We’ll go down a little later to tag it, check the sex, and put them out with the rest of the cows.
Until then, Imma take a nap.

[Pictured here are calves and cows that have birthed naturally in the meadow. The special cases haven’t had their portraits made just yet. Been too busy bringing them into the world and I don’t think you want to see those details.] 😉

7 Responses

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  1. Lenore Diane said, on March 12, 2012 at 10:35 am

    Wow. The life of the rancher is hard – physically and emotionally. I cannot fathom witnessing the birth of a calf, colt or filly, Leah. The joy I can fathom, but the fear of whether or not the baby will live would be too much. I hope the 2nd calf makes it. I look forward to seeing their pictures. Enjoy your nap! Birthing is hard work. 🙂


  2. cravesadventure said, on March 12, 2012 at 11:45 am

    Nothing like birthing season on the farm/ranch. I grew up on a farm and was partial to the chicks and lambs. Thanks for sharing and Good Luck:)


  3. f-stop mama said, on March 12, 2012 at 2:33 pm

    How exciting and interesting all in the same token! Wow I cannot imagine what it would be like to help birth a calf.


  4. Ellen said, on March 12, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    oh my, you were like a midwife!!!! how fantastic!! I guess you must have been very nervous but what a wonderful experience anyway.
    Enjoy your nap, you do deserve it!!


  5. ncprism said, on March 12, 2012 at 7:14 pm

    What a memorable experience! Look forward to all the babies’ photos!


  6. melissakoski said, on March 13, 2012 at 4:56 am

    Congrats Leah on the births and your part in those births. May you sleep heavily and productively when possible during calving. (:


  7. Roban said, on March 13, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    Your Wyoming adventures make beautiful photographs, Leah! Here, the Bradford pears have bloomed and cherry blossoms will be appearing soon.


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