Monday, May 28, 2012

The Twin

I returned to the field early the next morning to see if the expected twin had been born and if it was a male or a female.

I brought my bucket of equipment and was ready to band, tag and weigh.
Unfortunately, somehow on Friday when I fell down the steep slope, I had lost my perfect Uncle Henry jacknife with 3 blades.
I have had that knife since my deployment during Hurricane Katrina and am pretty miffed that I may never find it.
I fully intended to look for the new calf and then my knife. In that order.

When I arrived to the field the herd was scattered around and chewing the lush grass.

The grass was still high.
It was going to be like an Easter egg hunt looking for a new calf.

I found Google and there was no calf nearby.  And she wasn't going to tell me where any of her calves were.
She has a long standing tradition of hiding her calves really really well.

Her first calf Gracie (the Guard Cow) was hidden in a 100 acre field for 8 days before we found her.
People, dogs and riders on horseback searched that field every day and none of us could find that calf. I thought coyotes had gotten it. But 8 days later Googie walked the calf out to the field by the road and showed us all how much smarter she was than the rest of us.

For now, Goog gave me the hairy eyeball as I approached her from the east side of the big field.

I walked a grid in the field looking for ALL the calves and doing a head count.  The grass was high and hard to walk in.   I eventually found all of the calves except for Goggies new heifer and any other calf she may have had.  I was ready to call out a search party.

If I had a good cow dog I know that I would of been able to find her calf sooner....but as you all know, Mavis is a reluctant cow dog.

She is always with me, but always outside of where the cows are.  She has an imaginary boundary and she will. not. cross. it.

 Anyhow, she had her paws full trying to keep an eye on me while I walked the field.  Mavis zooms all over the field on the other side of the fence keeping track of me.  I wear her out.

I walked the entire perimeter of the field and approached Googie from the west and that's when I saw a little white head in the grass.

Googie watched me at first and then pretended it was no big deal and went back to grazing.

As I approached the calf in the grass, I could feel my heart pounding with excitement.

It was the heifer from the evening before with a full belly.   No other new calf in the area.

I continued to look and went back to the areas I had walked and fallen 12 hours previously.

Hoping to either find a calf or my much used, and NEEDED, knife.

The grass on the left was grazed on Friday and the grass on the right was given to the herd this morning.

About 30 feet to the left is where the hill is and where I went butt over nose down it.

My knife was nowhere to be found, although I did find an extra ear tag and a pen.

 While I was looking for knife and calf, Wanda came over to see what I was doing OR to make a confession that she swallowed my knife.  I do not know which.

What I do know is that there is no twin and there is no knife.

I am actually a bit relieved that there is no second calf in Google's plans this weekend.  Twins are a lot of work and I usually have to bottle feed and creep feed them to keep them growing at the same pace as others.  Not to mention the work and stress on the mother.

Sadly, my knife is gone and won't be replaced for awhile.

So, dear friends.  Its a twinless weekend!         Time to exhale.


  1. I can identify first hand with the problems twin calves bring...glad she seems to be off to a great start with her one heifer!

    Countless times when we've had twins we groan, because even if both calves are fine, the Mamma either doesn't clean, or has some kind of complications.

  2. kind of relieved, myself that there is no twin as I find they are truly not always the blessing they first appear. Sucks bout your knife though . nothing beats a really good pocket knife.My best one flipped out of my hand one day and landed in the tube steel of a gate! could not have managed that twice on a bet!