Since she was a calf in 2012, I’ve had high hopes for the all-red cow (2092), now babysitting our first Vintage Angus calves on the irrigated pasture. A spitting image of her mother, she is demonstrating the same strong, maternal traits as her mother.
Separated from her first calf, a Wagyu X in 2010, by a series of events I can only imagine that had to include a high-speed ATV chase when she strayed onto the neighbors to be run through two barbed wire fences, 440 was finally reunited with her calf after we picked her up at another neighbor’s corrals at the behest of the brand inspector ten days later.
Drying up, she had obviously had a calf, but local details were skimpy. All we could do was bring her home and put her back into the same hillside pasture she had come from, hoping the two might get back together, though we hadn’t seen her calf. We were fairly certain that if she found it alive, the best she could offer was companionship. Three days later, I saw the two together, and unbelievably, she had come back into her milk. 440 is a legend on this ranch, epitomizing the strong hormones and maternal instincts we choose to develop instead of just beefy carcasses. After all, we’re in the business of raising cows that can raise a baby.
I’ve already checked, her week-old, red calf in the grass is a bull. But we’re hoping for at least 20 replacement heifers from last year’s Vintage bulls and this bunch of second-calf heifers.