Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Cattle Handling Points

What follows is an excerpt from a great article on cattle handling from Texas Agrilife Extension. You can find the full text of the article HERE and it is certainly well worth the read.

"There are five basic principles of cattle behavior that when used properly can improve the ease and speed of working cattle while reducing stress and increasing efficiency. Those principles are: 

1. Cattle want to see you.
Understanding how cattle see is basic to getting cattle to respond to your position. Cattle can see everywhere but directly behind them or a small blind spot in front of them. When working from behind, it is important to keep moving side to side to prevent cattle from turning in an effort to keep you in their line of sight. 

2. Cattle want to go around you.
This allows you to position yourself such that, when they do go around you, they are pointed directly at the gate or destination you had in mind. They’ll think it was their idea to go there! 

3. Cattle want to be with and will go to other cattle.
A herding instinct is natural among ‘prey’ animals. As stockmen we can take advantage of this natural instinct as we work from the front of cattle. If you start the front the back will follow. 

4. Cattle want to return to where they have been.
The natural instinct of a cow is to return to the last safe or comfortable place they were. The simple principle of the return box or “Bud Box” helps capture and use this principle. It also works great in sorting and moving cattle from one corral to another. 

5. Cattle can only process one main thought at a time.
If cattle are thinking about anything other than what you are asking them to do you will need to change their mind first before putting pressure on them.

There are three basic means of communicating with livestock. Very simply they are:

􀁸 Sight
􀁸 Sound
􀁸 Touch

Cattle prefer to communicate through line of sight. Sound coming from a human for the most part is stressful and marginally successful in getting the desired result. Sound should be used as a secondary method and only used when sight is not adequate. Sound can often lead to distracting the line of sight away from the desired direction. Touch is really only useful in situations where animals are confined and additional stimulus is needed to get cattle to move or respond. Touch does not refer to use of driving aids such as hotshots or sorting sticks or paddles.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

British White Cows & Heifers for Sale

British White Cattle for Sale in Colmesneil, Texas

J.West Cattle Company now has a selection of British White Cattle for sale ranging in age from weanlings to older bred cows that have several more good breeding years to add to add fine stock to your herd.  Here are photos of a few of the bred cows available now.
DAR'lin Lil Diamond

J.West's Maude Rae
J.West's Nova

J.West's Olivia
J.West's Birdie

  Please visit www.TexasBritishWhiteCattle.com for additional information.........

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Cattle and other Animals Slaughtered for Human Consumption Deserve the Benefit of Modern Technology .... just like we Humans do.

This lovely cow is J.West's Nell Opal, sired by J.West's Bounder, an English Woodbastwick Turpin sired bull, and Nell Opal has never missed a calf. Her calf at foot is sired by J.West's El Presidente. I really enjoy this video from a year and half or so ago, gives me a quiet happy feeling. Yes, the calf looks muddy with the August summer sand turning to mud with the fluids of birth . . . but look how very alive and curious he is, how grand and milky and beautiful his dam, my Nell Opal. I've just about finished, only in the last hours, a silly struggle to keep her image from being used for a purpose that I found abhorrent and totally at odds with this breed's history, it's docility -- the joy the breed conveys to it's owners on a regular basis -- yes, they are beef cattle -- but they do feel pain, keenly, they feel the loss of their calves, they sense the injury and distress of their herd mates -- and they do deserve the benefit of modern humane treatment at slaughter, rather than their throats being slit and a painful and unconscionable wait for them to cry and struggle and bleed out and die. We accept the furtherance of technology that benefits humans -- yet some wish to hold the slaughter animal back to Biblical days. Astounding.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Newborn British White Heifer!

Have a look . . . a rather long look, at J.West's Doc's Gal with her newborn heifer sired by J.West's Milo.  The heifer is still wet from birth, and her dam is trying her best to lick her dry in the chilling wind.  My dog, Lucky, is creeping around in the yaupon grove and that puts her on high alert, then you see a nice little bull calf coming to check out what's up, and he happens to be her maternal brother, my J.West's MsRae's latest calf.  Doc's Gal is out of MsRae and Mazarati, both sired by my first herd bull, DFTX 'Doc' Watson, chosen by the late Bob Stanley as the bull to start his herd with. Doc was my first British White to hit the pastures some 14 years back.  J.West's Doc's Gal was flushed for embryos that were exported to Australia for use at Shrublands Estate cattle farm.  I do hope they have heifers from Doc's Gal bred to calve later on this year . . . and even more hope they express the incredibly milky and beautiful udder of Doc's Gal.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

British White Cattle are an Excellent Fit for Commercial Production

Four Top Commercial Producers Talk About Beef Production

The following are excerpts from an interesting Beef Cattle Magazine article.  Click the link above for the full text of the article: 

“Our breeding program is really focused around a maternal composite,” says John Maddux with Maddux Cattle Company of Wauneta, NE, this year’s BIF Commercial Producer of the Year Award winner. “We stress maternal traits and making sure we’re focused on fitness and convenience traits as opposed to the traditional production traits that are represented by EPDs.”

“ . . . For most breeds out there, we have more-than-optimum levels of production,” he says. That means having a high-growth calf is relatively unimportant to them, he says, because it’s relatively easy with moderate growth to make a nine-weight steer at 16 or 17 months of age. . . "

" . . . So, while the most efficient cow size will differ depending on the environmental constraints you run in, all four say a moderate cow size is something to shoot for. “It may not be for everybody, but for our program, we want moderate size, a 1,200-lb. cow max,” Maddux says."

J.West's Vincenzia & Heifer Calf