Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Is 2 Better then 1?

Twins always seem like such a neat thing. 2 calves, 2 times the money, and most times 2 times the work that go along with them.

Each year it we usually get a set or 2 that are born at the farm, and each time we see twins it is a bit of a disappointment. There are lots of different mind sets when it comes to the disadvantages of twins. The big one is that if the sexes of the calves are a male and a female, if there were in the same sack during development the heifer will be a free martin, and unable to breed. When it comes to there being 2 bulls, some people believe that a bull can pass on the twin gene and do not like to purchase them for breeding. The big thing is that regardless of the sex of the calves, the cow simply does not do as well on the calves as there is 2 she is feeding rather then 1. This can lead to lower weaning weights or the cow not getting back in calf.

In some cases if we have a cow who has lost a calf we will try grafting one of the twins onto another mother. This can be a time consuming process, and does not always work, but it is better for both the mother of the twins, and the twins themselves.

One of the twin bulls this year
One big happy family of 3

1 comment:

Dawson Cattle Company said...

we had twins last year. bull-red/white, heifer-black/white. they weighed 75lbs when born and weaned out at over 600lbs each. they did very well and we kept the steer for our son to show.
good luck with those cuties.