African Farming went to find out what our farmers are busy with at this Autumn.
Tiro Mongwaketsi, Ganyesa, North West
It’s all quiet on the farm at the moment, because we have just taken the bulls out from the breeding cow herds.
We need to keep the bulls in good condition after three months of hard work. Depending on their condition, we will feed production licks or energy and protein licks (if the condition has dropped off).
We also carry out daily inspections of the cows to check for cows in heats. You do not want any nasty surprises come pregnancy test time in May – what if half your cows did not conceive? If you see cows cycling now, there is still a chance of getting them pregnant.
We vaccinate our cattle, including lactating cows, with Supervax to protect against anthrax, botulism and blackleg. We hope that the calves, now between two and four months old, can get passive immunity through their mothers’ milk. Calves will be vaccinated against contagious abortion (brucellosis) too.
We plan to do general infrastructure maintenance like fixing fences and repairing any infrastructure that may be broken. Otherwise, our focus is on the goats, with their breeding season starting this month.