Ode to Isabelle
Purchased for $1200 on July 19th, little Jersey Isabelle "Belle" arrived well-trained. The seller did not know her age (guessed 5 years old) and had a "friend" deliver her, arriving at mid-night due to traffic after nearly 12 hours in the trailer. Belle freaked when unloading immediately breaking through the fence to be with the other cows. That may have been her last bold moment. She was as gentle and sweet as we have known, never kicking or objecting to come in to be milked, though she had a quirky way of licking her teeth. The moment she knew where the stanchion was, she would compete to get into it. She let down perfectly, milked out easily, was only 3 years old, tested A2/A2, and had great handles. Her downfall was her poor fertility, probably hinted at by her crooked teeth and tiny frame. She had been with a bull for a month and was supposed to be bred. Then, we AI'd her unsuccessfully.
She gave a total of 161 gallons of rich milk from the latter part of her lactation before we dried her on November 11th. We invested $25 to find out she was A2/A2 with a simple hair sample, $110 to AI her, $6 for a blood preg-check, (we learned to do a blood draw from the tail-no vet needed) and around $250 to have her vet do a farm call with exam and check for TB and Brucellosis. We sold her for $1500 to someone who picked her up. She taught us the value of fertile cows, and we are now committed to Brown Swiss crosses.
Spray foamed new facility roof
After approval from the inspector, I sprayed open cell 5" and 8.5" thick, not trimming to avoid a huge mess. It was "extra" foam, so Jamin gave me a GREAT deal (I picked the price), paying $750.
Milk pump for Jewel
Jewel's edema before calving
Days before calving: it's a bulge; it's a hernia; it's edema! Thanks to Peter in Emmett, Amy, and the vet for their free consultations!
Josh: Founder, father