Thursday, September 10, 2009

Lily and Belle

The most recent two cows to join our herd (I think 6 constitutes a herd, yes?) are Lily and Belle. Another 2 lovely ladies, if I do say so myself.

Lily is a bit older at about 6 or 7 years old. She is the just the sweetest thing. She's a bit shorter than the rest and just looks so shy and innocent. She does not have any horns naturally, which makes me so happy to add those genetics to our herd. Both dehorning and dealing with a horned animal are no fun. She does not give a whole lot of milk right now, but we love her anyway.Lily happens to be terrified of children. One time when she was in the stanchion about to be milked, Meagan came running up and Lily was so frightened that she moved the whole stanchion about 4 feet. Don says that all he needs to do to get Lily to move forward is to put one of the kids behind her. There were kids at her last home, but maybe they were a bit wild? All I know is that Lily isn't fond of ours...yet. The kids are milking her with Don, though, so hopefully she will become more comfortable around them as time goes on.

Belle is our one cow with spots. She is very pretty, but a bit untamed. She has absolutely no intention of letting any human get near her. She is dry right now. We'll either get her to settle down or she'll become a nurse cow next year.

Lily and Belle came with a machine bucket milker. We still milk Lily by hand because she gives so little, but it is a nice help for milking Isabelle. Next spring when we have 5 lactating cows (though 1 or 2 may be nurse cows), it'll be a very nice help. It feels a bit like cheating since you get milk without the arm workout, but I love it because Don doesn't need my help and I can stay inside with the babies. Incidentally, did you know that the record for hand-milking was set in 1992 by Joseph Love of Kenya? He milked 30 cows for 117 gallons. I'd like to see those forearms.


Anonymous said...

Wow! What are you folks going to do with all that milk when the cows come fresh? Your two new additions look nice:) Is Belle a Red Holstein? She sure looks like it. Thanks for updating; I enjoy hearing about the activities of your family:)

Red Gate said...

I am so jealous! I recently paid $18 for 2 gallons of raw jersey milk while we were at our farm. I can't wait to have fresh milk every day from our own cow!