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Managing reproduction, feeding, branding, selling & fence repair
2 January 2009
page one of three
The start of the New Year finds the heifers on the move for an examination by the veterinarian at the cow pens. Note the rear left back tire on the pickup truck is going flat.
The heifers reach the bridge over the canal but are reluctant to cross without a little prodding.
With the heifers finally over the bridge and into the cow pens, Brandon McKenzie fills the truck tire with air. Sean Sexton and Brandon go out to feed the first-calf heifers who have had their first calves this year.
The young mothers dive right into the feed. The heifers are ravenous because, to quote from the IFAS publication Florida Cow-Calf Management, "The first-calf heifer must provide milk for her calf, get ready to start a new pregnancy, and still continue her own growth!"
While the heifers are being fed, the sale bulls are brought to the pens for a potential sale.
Mike Sexton and Will Barker.

LEFT: Mike and Brandon complete an impromptu repair job on the chute, which is here inspected by Sean and Travis Scent.

BELOW: With the repairs done, the heifers are sent down one by one into the squeeze chute to be examined by the doctor. From left, Travis Scent, Doctor Harvey (in the squeeze chute), Mike Sexton, Rob Tripson (operating the head catch), and the doctor's assistant, Stephanie.

Will Barker identifies each heifer by the ear tag then doses them with deworming medicine. Doctor Harvey does an internal examination of the heifer's reproductive tract to come up with a Reproductive Tract Score (RTS). The score runs from one, an immature tract, to five, a mature tract.
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Florida Cattle Ranch by Bob Montanaro
All contents copyright Lunar Cabin