Calving Lot Fences

We’ve been having a little problem lately with some cows that like to go into a corner to calve. This little corner is on the edge of the arena behind the extra shed. The fact that they like to calve back there wouldn’t be so bad, but they leave their calves there and it makes them hard to tag.

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My father in law and I made an attempt to tag a calf in the corner. The cow ran off, the calf spooked, it got up and pushed its way through the fence into an area of dense trees. Trying to retrieve it only made it run more to the other side of the tree row, into the heifer meadow. My father in law took his horse and went over to rope it. By the time I got there with the pickup, chaos had ensued.

The father in law roped the calf, the calf ran into the lake, the horse followed. The horse got in the rushes and got scared. Started bucking in the water, my father in laws calving book flew out of his pocket into the rushes. When I showed up they were all standing by the lake in the meadow, soaking wet.

Don’t lose your calving book on a bucking horse who just roped a calf in a lake. Fix the corner.

We put up some panels; an easy, temporary fix.

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Then we did some other needed fence maintenance. Our calving lot is surrounded by a 5 wire fence. This should be adequate to keep little calves in, but not always.

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In some areas we have a wire mesh-like fencing.

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Cows love to rub on fences, even with the barbed wire. If it makes a difference, it helps to put the barbs on the inside of the post to discourage cows from rubbing on your post and making them crooked. I do like the look of a post and wire that has been rubbed smooth and shiny by cows.

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We fixed a gate and removed some tumbleweeds. It is a no-win game with the tumble weeds here. One day the wind is from the north, and you pull all the weeds out of the gate. They blow to the other side of your pasture just to have a south wind the next day and then they’re back in your gate. We play these games constantly. Tumbleweeds actually hold some nutritional value that, surprisingly, increases when the plant is dried. The plant may save you from drought, if you can starve your cows into eating it. Most of the time it just piles in our fence lines so much that it can actually blow a fence line over.

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My husband has a magical way with fencing pliers. His technique is amazing and he uses the pliers in every way nobody ever thought about. I put together a video that shows some of his skills while he was making a wire hinge. It was windy today, so I took out the sound and added some elevator music for your viewing pleasure! A lot of the technique is in twisting the wires with the pliers to take out the slack.

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One thought on “Calving Lot Fences

  1. Pingback: Cleaning Stalls and Chasing Cows | Calving2014

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