Tuesday, June 16, 2009

"Don't stand so, don't stand so, don't stand so close to (her)."

I awoke this morning to catch a glimpse of T-Bone, all Mr. Big Man 6.5-month old, mounting Bridgit (in a biblical sense), and she was standing for him. This is SO not cool. My understandin a female will only stand for a mounter when she's in heat (and the mounter can be male or female, any age). As I watched, then wandered away from the window and back again later, I saw him mount her no fewer than six times, following her around, practically glued to her backside. Grrr.

Little Annabel, sensing something amiss and T-Bone getting attention from Bridgit he normally doesn't, first ran over to Auntie Sheila for comfort, then back to her mother to try and nurse. Bridgit pushed her away. I believe that's normal when a cow is in heat.

We don't *want* Bridgit to be in heat. She was supposed to come into heat when Tabor the bull was visiting for his extended 16-week stay. She was supposed to have been bred back during that time, and should be pregnant now.

Alas, I'll notate in my dayplanner Bridgit - SH for today, and will make note to watch again in another 28-ish days to see if we have a repeat performance, indicating another heat (cows cycle like women...crazy, huh?). If she indeed is in heat, I have no idea what we'll do. We're not set up to keep her still for artificial insemination, and would have to obtain semen straws from an appropriate Scottish Highland bull (at a cost of $35-200 per straw, depdending on how famous the bull is, and whether we can get just a couple from someone instead of having to take the 5 straw minimum), AND make contact with someone local who does AI. And having a bull back out on our property, what with the strain already put on the fences from Tabor's visit and the fact that the dry spell has caused our grass to head out prematurely and necessitated the purchase of another haylage bale last night....oy, I shudder to think.

And you know, we have no intention of leaving T-Bone an intact bull on our property past the age of 12 months. If he was of age (and God save our fences and other structures/equipment!), there would be no problem letting him breed Bridgit as they're not closely related. Bad timing, man.


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