Monday, July 16, 2012

A new season

This is the time of year the new season begins on the farm and its the busiest time of year for the dairy farmer.  The start of calving coincided with the school holidays giving farm children another opportunity to learn about the miracle of birth.

Georgia came in and said, "Did you see us pulling that calf out?"  (referring to an assisted birth)
I told her I'd seen her in the paddock with her mum and dad but no, hadn't seen that.
"Do you know why the other cows gather around when we are in the paddock with a cow that is giving birth?"
Knowing there was a gem of wisdom on its way I said no, why did they do that.
She explained that they do it to for protection.  To protect the cow while she is pushing out the calf, or to protect the calf when it is born.  "You know, from wolves and that."
I smiled and said, "But we don't have any wolves in this country!"
She tries so hard to be patient with me, although her impatience with me is barely concealed as she tells me, "Granny, they are cows!  They don't even know what country they are in!"

No matter how many times I see an aminal being born, I never tire of it.  I love watching motherly instinct at work, the compulsive licking to clean up their offspring and the gentle lowing as they talk to their baby.


This one is a few hours older than the two above but still tired from his birthing ordeal and refusing to get up and move.  His mother was nervous at my presence and positioned herself between me and her stubborn little one.

There are a number of calves already in the calf pens.  I thought for a minute I was going to get these four in a line but there's always one who doesn't co-operate.

In the paddock opposite the pens are the babies' big sisters, last season's heifer calves.  They are quiet and curious.



  1. New life is beautiful as are the images you captured!

  2. Just gorgeous. I always marvel at the miracle of birth as well, no matter how many little ones you see.

  3. Instinct is really a miracle, isn't it?

  4. An uplifting post.....beautiful.

  5. Don"t you know any thing Grannie?
    Oh I love it
    Gorgeous post Tkaes me back a few years

  6. I love Georgia's words of wit and wisdom.

  7. First....COWS!!!!!!!!
    Next, that Georgia cracks me
    Lastly....I love COWS!!

  8. "Out of the mouth of babes..." :)

    Funny, just before I dropped in here I watched an episode of All Creatures Great and Small (the old TV series about Yorkshire vet James Herriot). With the birth of a calf just at the end...

  9. Pauline I am so sorry. I had all that written down and still made that error. I did not even comment on your beautiful cows. Rebecca told me to continue through July but I would appreciate if you would do next week. It is so hard to choose sometimes. Your photography is amazing and after all that is what this is all about.

  10. Hi Pauline. Nice comment about my rocks.
    Love, love, love your blog!!! I used to be a herdtester in NZ. Remember those? Cows are my favourite of all animals - especially dairy cows. Awesome pics, too, by the way.

  11. A delightful post Pauline, out of the mouths of babes, what a gem to remember. Loved the photos and the story. Brilliant!


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