It didn't take us long to purchase our two dairy heifers! And oh my, do we adore these ladies!? Our holstein is expecting a calf May of 2018! We AI'ed her to a jersey bull named "Texas." Fingers crossed for another heifer! We cannot wait!!! It's as exciting in our family as a new baby being born! When a baby calf is born to a dairy cow, that means milk for everyone! We have never milked a cow before, but are expecting to get 10 gallons a day or more when this calf comes. And that is sharing with the calf. Oh my, oh my! Can you say cheese, butter, sour cream, soap, buttermilk, etc?!!! I am currently on the market for a milking machine. Cows have to be milked twice a day. It takes 5 mins with a milk machine and 20 by hand. This city girl is going with the former option :). To be honest, as a momma of 4, it doesn't look much different than a breast pump. I think I've got this! Cheers to trying new things!
Baby "Belle" arrived the night before Mother's Day. She is our family's first new born baby calf and she is simply perfect! Her mama Bessy is a champion first-time mom! We missed the birth, but found the calf completely dry next to her mama already full of milk. Belle is part Holstein (like her mama) and part Jersey (like her dad). Although she was born brown like a jersey, by the time she turned six months old she would be black like a holstein. Through this we learned that a person's eye color will change when they are a baby. In the same way a cow's hide color can change when they are young. Nevertheless she is gorgeous! And a gentle giant, just perfect for a family farm. We can't wait to see what kind of mama she will grow up to be!
With a new calf on the farm comes all the milk! Milking a cow is a twice a day chore that can be eased down to once a day with calf sharing. To milk a cow by hand may take over thirty minutes to an hour. To do it with a machine only takes five minutes. Modern technology is bliss for the family farm!