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January 15, 2016

2016 Preg Checking at the Lunde Farm || Airdrie Farm Lifestyle Photographer

Waylon Wise from Nagel Veterinary Services came out to do our Preg Checking again this year. We always appreciate having Waylon out to preg check the cows for us: he is efficient and honest with the animals. Missing this year was his sidekick Sherry, who is fabulous and was sorely missed this year so I put on the big girl pants and got to run the scanning wand this year  (for scanning in the CCIA RFID tags). Preg checking went a little rocky this year as the cows were hot to trot to get in the chute with the warm weather, Waylon was nursing a stomach flu and at one point a pen of unchecked cows crashed through a panel & into a pen of checked bred cows.. You know what they say.. The family that preg checks together stays together.. Preg checking without a few yelling matches is a dull affair!

As the cows are ushered through, they are caught in the chute, preg-checked, treated with Ivomec (external and internal parasite pour on), vaccined, and their RFID tags are scanned into the computer.  Open (not bred) cows are put into a seperate cull pen to be taken to auction. This year we had the best fertility we have ever seen on our farm, with only 3 open cows out of a 150 cow herd. Even Waylon said it is the best fertility he has seen all year as he’s made his rounds. So, a round of applause is in order for our cows and bulls (I suppose its a team effort afterall)!!!

neurontin 300 mgs LET’S GET TECHNICAL ABOUT CCIA RFID TAGS: The CCIA (Canadian Cattle Identification Agency) requires all cattle must be tagged with an RFID (radio frequency identification) tag. These are yellow buttons that we pop in their ear when they are young (while they are still at their home of origin– so, the Lunde farm). Canadian cattle producers cannot sell cattle without an RFID tag in their ear. These tags all have a unique # and they are ordered specially for our farm (we have a premise ID– so as long as that cow has that same button, it can be tracked back to Lunde Farm). Cattle keep their button right up to post death — the tag is kept with the carcass. The CCIA / RFID tags were introduced during the BSE outbreak in the early 2000’s here in Canada (mandatory if we wanted to keep beef exports with the states: as they instituted industry crushing COOL Country of Origin Labeling , but as of Dec 18, 2015 COOL has been repealed). These tags emit a radio frequency that can be scanned into a computer with a wand. I think the radio frequency tags have a strong potential to work for you, especially as new technologies come out… Imagine scanning a cow and having her tag#, calving and health history pop up automatically in a Excel spreadsheet!! Pretty handy. With COOL freshly repealed it is a bright and exciting future for Canadian beef producers.

This year has been especially exciting for me as I watch replacement heifers that I helped raise come through the chutes. It’s been about 2 years since I came home to work on the farm with my Dad. I came home at the tail end of calving 2014 and was around to pitch in a bit that season, and those heifer calves are expecting their first calves this March 2016.  These 20 replacement heifers were raised and fed grain with a pail daily by me for the first 2 years of their life. They are quiet and come running when I call– they know my voice.

I was able to purchase 3 bred replacement heifers from my Dad this year, 106G “Dot”, 71G & 74G “the Twisted Sisters” respectively— they are proudly under the KC brand now and are sporting beautiful new RED tags (130R, 131R & 132R). Nothing compares to this feeling!!

THROWBACK — LEARN MORE ABOUT PREG CHECKING & AND SEE MY 2015 BLOG POST HERE

CHECKOUT THE NAGEL VETERINARY SERVICES HERE

READ ABOUT THE CCIA RFID TAGS HERE

Preg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestyle

As the replacement heifers are checked bred, their “old number” calf tag is snipped out of their ear with pliers and their new “big girl” tag is popped in. Their old tag # is written down in the record book for future reference.

Preg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestyle

Preg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestyle

Waylon’s RFID tag scanning wand that relays ID numbers into the computer spreadsheet like magic!

Preg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestyle

The ultrasound unit is fairly small & hangs alongside the chute.

Preg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestyle

Waylon is quick and efficient at preg checking cows. He is in and out within seconds. I barely have time to snatch a photo!

Preg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestyle

RFID tags on the left. They contain a radio transmitter.

Preg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestyle

Dad prepping a needle with Calf Guard vaccine that helps kickstart immunity for scours (calf diarrhea) aka rotavirus/coronavirus. Scours will dehydrate and take down calves within days/hours so a vaccine and excellent management protocols are your best protection.

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Preg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestylePreg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestylePreg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestylePreg checking, cows, cattle, alberta, airdrie, lifestyle, farm lifestyle

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